Lund University

World-class research, outstanding research staff and specialised research environments create a breeding ground for PhD studies at Lund University. Doctoral candidates at Lund University are not only well prepared for successful careers as independent researchers but they also have strong possibilities to publish their work independently during their studies and to gain significant teaching experience.

  • Lund University offers PhD studies in all eight faculties
  • There are no tuition fees for PhD studies at Lund University

PhD programme and licentiate degree

A PhD programme consists of two parts: courses and thesis, forming a total of 240 ECTS credits, in which the doctoral thesis is to account for at least 120 credits. A PhD involves a total of four years of full-time study.

In Sweden a ‘licentiate’ degree equals the completion of half of the coursework, or thesis, required for a full PhD, i.e. a licentiate degree corresponds to two years of full-time study and at least 60 credits have to be awarded for a licentiate thesis. It is equivalent to the MPhil of the British education system.

Funding and financing doctoral studies

In Sweden, the most common form of funding postgraduate study is through appointment to a doctoral studentship position (“doctorandtjänst”) or a doctoral study grant position (utbildningsbidrag”).

In both cases, the University employs the doctoral candidate as a staff member and pays a salary whilst the doctoral candidate undertakes their PhD studies. In return the doctoral candidate provides some departmental and teaching duties (no more than 20% of a full-time position).

Admission requirements

To be admitted to doctoral studies, you need to have completed courses for at least 240 credits, of which at least 60 credits must be for Master’s level studies.

In most cases, students will hold a Bachelor’s degree and a Master’s degree, with a major in the same subject as the intended postgraduate study. The major must include a degree thesis presenting the results of independent research.

The quality of your thesis/theses is of particular importance and it is important that you demonstrate a capacity for independent thinking in this piece of work.

Students must have a very good command of English and you may be asked to include proof of proficiency in the form of a TOEFL or IELTS test, if requested by the individual department.

Finding and applying for PhD  positions

PhD studies are organised at the faculty level and the process for applying for PhD positions is specific to each faculty. There is no set application period for PhD positions. Some departments advertise their positions in spring, while others advertise on an ongoing basis, as and when positions arise.

You apply for a PhD position within a certain subject area. Admission to PhD positions is restricted and competition for advertised positions is usually tough.

Most of the faculties advertise their PhD positions on Lund University’s main website, through the doctoral job vacancy page. Note that the Faculties of Humanities and Theology only advertise on their own website, usually announcing their positions once a year in February.

You should always check the relevant faculty’s website pages for any additional notices and specific forms and instructions about their application process.

For the majority of PhD positions at Lund University, you apply online through our online job portal and complete the requirements as advertised for the specific vacancy and in line with the process described by the faculty. Application documents are sent directly to the faculty including officially certified copies of documents/certificates/transcripts and other supporting documents, as required for the specific position/particular faculty. Authorised translations are often needed. You may need to provide additional details of your academic background, e.g. syllabi, course descriptions and literature lists.

For additional information or clarification, please review the PhD application information on the faculty webpages or contact the relevant faculty to discuss opportunities for PhD study and the procedure for applying.