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Public Defence and Degree

The Degree of Doctor is the highest degree in Sweden. At the Faculty of Culture and Society these Doctoral degrees are awarded:

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Degree certificate
Public defence
Doctoral award ceremony
After the degree

  • Filosofie licentiat - Licentiate of Philosophy
  • Filosofie doktor - Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

In some of our Doctoral programs the following degrees may also be awarded , after assessment by the dean, to research students with the relevant first-cycle courses and study programmes:

  • Teknologie licentiat - Licentiate of Philosophy
  • Teknologie doktor - Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

The Degree Ordinance states which degrees may be awarded at the faculty Doctoral programs. The general Study Plan of the relevant program lists which degrees may be awarded.

Degree certificate

Following successfully completed public defence or licentiate seminar, you apply for a degree certificate. To do so, you must also have completed all the credits required in the programme. The degree certificate is issued by the university Degree Office

Public defence

The public defence is the examination which concludes your Doctoral education. This is when you defend your dissertation publicly. To be awarded your Doctoral degree, the higher education credits that are included in the program must also be completed. The Directions for the public defence of dissertations contain a detailed account of the whole process from the final examination of the dissertation, via the notification of the date of the defence, to the printing procedure and the defence act itself. These directives also state the division of responsibility and give guidelines for how to allocate the faculty grant given to the department to organize the public defence. 

In Directions for licentiate seminar you can read about the process until licentiate seminar.

Help with the publication of your dissertation is available through the University's Publication Services

Doctoral award ceremony

Everyone who has received a Doctoral degree in the preceding academic year is invited to take part in the Doctoral award ceremony (Malmö University's Annual Academic Ceremony), which usually takes place in the early autumn. This is when the diploma and the doctoral insignia are handed over, including the doctoral ring and the laurel wreath or doctoral cap, in other words, the external signs of the Degree of Doctor.

Either a laurel wreath or a doctoral hat must be worn during the award ceremony. Doctoral hats can either be bought individually or borrowed. Wearing a ring is, however, not compulsory, as rings are only symbolically conveyed on this occasion. Still, Doctors who wish to buy a ring usually order one in preparation for the ceremony. The diploma is printed at the initiative of Malmö University and is received as part of the ritual.

After the degree

A little more than half of those who have been awarded a research degree remain in academia. You may also apply for positions outside the university.

Read more about the future prospects after third-cycle education in the Doctoral handbook,studera.nu/doctoralstudies,

Post doc
Post doc (postdoctoral research ) offers an opportunity for those who have just been awarded a Doctoral degree to gain further research experience and qualifications. Postdoctoral research is usually financed via scholarships. A postdoc position is often taken up at a university or research institute abroad for the duration of a few years.

Project researcher
An employment as a project researcher aims to meet the needs of the business for research competence in connection with time-limited research projects. Authorized to be employed as a project researcher is the person who has obtained a doctoral degree or has equivalent scientific competence.

An ademic career normally involves competition with other researchers for obtaining positions or financing via external research grants. After a period of gaining research qualification and supplementary education qualification you can apply to be appointed as an unpaid Docent (reader), which means that you have been declared competent as an independent researcher qualified to supervise Doctoral Students.

Last updated by Susanne Lundborg