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”The quality of doctoral education affects everything we do”


Malmö University has a new framework for quality assurance of doctoral education.

During 2017, a joint framework for quality assurance of doctoral education has been developed. Research is increasing at the University, and doctoral education is a priority. The framework is focusing on collegial review and exchange of good practice between subjects and faculties.

“Collegial review of each PhD student’s work is most important to ensure high quality.

”Much of the framework is things we are already doing today, just not systematically. We have not had the connection between what is being done at faculty and university levels before,” said Christian Stråhlman, research officer at the University Executive Office.

Collegial review is pivotal

“The quality of our doctoral education affects everything we do at the University. So many good things are being done, and we can learn from each other. One example is the supervisor collegia. These are very important to ensure collegial influence, and not all faculties had them before” he added.

The framework describes the division of responsibilities – what is to be done at the faculty or school, and what is to be done at University level.

”The faculties are very different from each other and are free to do their work independently, but what is being done has to be documented and experiences must be shared. There is not one way of doing doctoral education that suits all of our fifteen subjects. This gives us the opportunity to learn from everyone’s experiences.”

At University level, professional development for supervisors is needed. All research subjects are also to be evaluated over a five year cycle.

“This is an update to the internal evaluation that was done 2013-15. We saw that this was so important and valuable that it has now been made part of the framework with the addition of external representation.”

Development of the framework

Bo Petersson, adviser to the Vice-Chancellor, has lead the development of the framework for doctoral education, which has been done by the Committee for Doctoral Education. In addition to Bo Petersson and Christian Stråhlman, research coordinator Peter Jönsson has taken part in several phases of the process.

The proposal has been circulated for comments and discussed by the Research Committee as well as the University Management. The Doctoral Student Union has also been involved.