Doctoral education

The following postgraduate degrees can be completed at the Faculty of Medicine: Licentiate of Philosophy, Doctor of Philosophy, Doctor of Medical Science and Doctor of Dental Science. As of 1 January 2017, it will also be possible to complete the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (Psychology). As a rule, persons with a degree of Licentiate of Medicine or Licentiate of Dentistry or an eligible second-cycle (Master’s) degree may apply for a right to pursue a doctoral degree at the Faculty.

Prospective postgraduate students should first contact researchers and research groups to find a suitable supervisor and research topic. Applicants can apply for a right to pursue doctoral studies once a suitable doctoral programme, supervisor(s) and monitoring group have been selected and the applicant has drafted a research plan.

The right to pursue doctoral studies must be applied for using an online form in Studyinfo system. Application deadlines are published separately.


The goal of the doctoral degree is to familiarise the doctoral candidate with scientific thinking and research methods and to enable him or her to solve scientific problems.

Postgraduate education has the following objectives:

  1. The doctoral candidate becomes profoundly familiar with his or her research field and its social significance and acquires, within that field, the abilities to apply scientific research methods critically and independently and to contribute to scientific knowledge.
  2. The doctoral candidate becomes familiar with the historical development, fundamental issues and research methods of his or her field.
  3. The doctoral candidate acquires sufficient understanding of general scientific theory and the disciplines related to his or her research field so as to be able to follow future developments.

Doctoral School in Health Sciences
Applying for a right to pursue doctoral studies
Doctoral dissertations

Are you already a doc­toral stu­dent?

The Instructions for Students website, aimed at current and old doctoral students, offers advice related to funding your studies, doing doctoral-level research and all the other information you need to complete a doctoral degree at the University of Helsinki.