University of Gothenburg

More about doctoral studies at the Department of Conservation

Here you find information about the content of the education.

The third-cycle study programme comprises a total of 240 credits for the Degree of Doctor, a small portion of which comprises coursework with the remainder being the research for and writing of an academic thesis. For doctoral students , a pass for the defence of the thesis and courses amounting to at least 60 credits are required for the Degree of Doctor. The Degree of Licentiate comprises 120 credits, including a licentiate thesis and coursework amounting to at least 30 credits.


Under the Higher Education Ordinance, at least two supervisors must be appointed for each doctoral student, one of whom is the principal supervisor. In addition, one or more assistant supervisors may be appointed. At least one of your supervisors must be an associate professor or equivalent. At least one of your supervisors must have completed the University’s course in the supervision of doctoral students or an equivalent course at another higher education institution.


The thesis is an independent research project that is reported on in the form of a monograph or a compilation thesis. The same applies to the licentiate thesis. You can discuss with your supervisors and examiner which form is most appropriate for you and your doctoral project.

During the study programme, you present your thesis at the department’s Higher seminar on at least three occasions, an Introductory seminar (after approximately six months), a Mid-way seminar, or a licentiate seminar halfway to the Degree of Doctor, and a Final seminar (approximately six months before the planned defence of the thesis). Additional seminars may be added if you wish and if there are seminar times available.


The courses in third-cycle study programmes comprise compulsory, recommended and elective courses. Every doctoral student has an examiner who is responsible for reviewing and grading the courses included in the study programme. The composition of the coursework component is adapted individually to meet your needs for breadth and depth in your studies.

Examination for third-cycle studies at the Department of Conservation

Third-cycle studies can lead to both a Degree of Licentiate and a Degree of Doctor. The Degree of Licentiate may be either a step in the third-cycle study programme to a Degree of Doctor, or be a final degree.

The Degree of Doctor must normally comprise exactly 240 credits. In exceptional cases, where it is not possible to exclude any course components in the degree, the Section of Degrees and Examination Service may approve a maximum of 245 credits in the degree.