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University of Turku Graduate School UTUGS -Supervising a Doctoral Researcher

The University of Turku Graduate School (UTUGS) is responsible for the development of doctoral education and provides support to the doctoral thesis supervisors.

For the doctoral thesis supervisor

Doctoral researcher's supervision and career guidance

Educating future experts who will solve complex scientific questions and social issues and build a sustainable world is a strategic goal of the University of Turku. In doctoral training, this goal is met by providing high-quality supervision, with emphasis on supervisors’ expertise and commitment to personalised supervision of doctoral researchers. In accordance with the goals set in the strategy, supervision of doctoral researchers should be inspiring and flexible, and it should support the reseachers’ research and doctoral education.

Career guidance for doctoral researchers

The doctoral researcher may have a career guidance discussion with his / her supervisor or it may be held as part of a follow-up group meeting. A suitable moment for a career discussion is, for example, at the beginning of the year.

UGIS - Information System of the Graduate School

UGIS is an information system developed for the needs of the university's graduate school. It contains the information about all the doctoral researchers and their supervisors in each doctoral programme at the university. UGIS covers the life cycle of doctoral education in its entirety (from an applicant all the way to a disputant). Its function is to act as a portal, which offers instructions as well as digital services such as accepting doctoral studies credits and e-forms related to the dissertation process. The supervisor is able to see all his/her students and monitor their progress. In addition to doctoral researchers and supervisors, among UGIS users are coordinators and secretaries from the doctoral programmes and faculties.

>> UGIS 3.0  

How to use UGIS for doctoral researchers

How to use UGIS for supervisors

How to use the UGIS portal

The UGIS portal can be found at To use the system, you must belong to one of the following user groups:

  • doctoral researcher
  • supervisor
  • head of major subject / research director
  • member of follow-up or supervisory group
  • director of a doctoral programme, head of a department
  • coordinator, administrator

In addition, you must have a utu useraccount that can log in to the system. If you have any problems accessing the system or have any questions regarding the use of the system, please contact the coordinator of the doctoral programme.

If you have a problem with the portal, you can send an e-mail to A screenshot of the error and a brief explanation of the action attempted will help you find the quickest solution.

UGIS works with Firefox, Chrome, Opera and Edge browsers, unfortunately Explorer is not compatible with UGIS.

Doctoral Researcher's Annual Progress Reporting

Annual reporting of doctoral researchers is one of the central quality assurance methods in doctoral training. Doctoral researcher, especially, and their supervisors benefit from the annual reporting, but the activities of the doctoral programmess and the graduate school are also developed on the basis of the reports.

Monitoring the progress and activeness

Monitoring doctoral researcher’s activeness takes place once a year, in January. In order to maintain an active study right, a doctoral researcher is required to

  • register every year with the University, either as an attending or a non-attending student, and
  • if registered  as an attending student, hand in an annual progress report to their doctoral programme in January.
  • In addition, the UGIS supervisor has to express their support for keeping the study right active. Supervisors are familiar with their supervisees’ situation, progress, and also possible disruptions or dropping out, so supervisors’ input is important when assessing doctoral researcher’s current situation.

A doctoral researcher has to report their progress for the first time when their right to study for a doctoral degree has started one academic year or one and a half academic year ago. The instructions on how to hand in the progress report are sent by the coordinator of the Doctoral Programme annually.

Doctoral researchers themselves and their supervisor, member of the follow-up / steering group, the head of major subject/research director and director of the doctoral programme will see the answers to the questions related to the progress of the training and research in the UGIS portal.

University Commitment for Grantees

Human Resources and the Research Funding Unit have planned the University's uniform commitment form that can be used in faculties/departments at the discretion of the department when agreeing on the conduct of research and offering research prerequisites between a person who is conducting research on a grant, as a visiting researcher or in any other way without an employment relationship with the University of Turku and the University of Turku's functional unit. Departments can, at their own discretion, guarantee researchers with e.g. a working room and various services.

International Doctoral Researchers

Information for international doctoral researchers

Information for international researchers  

Information for accepted students  


UNICOM project

The Uniting Companies and International University Talents (UNICOM) initiative aims to facilitate the interactions between small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) located in Southwest Finland and the highly qualified international talents already living in the area. The UNICOM project is part of the Course towards Finland project (in Finnish: Kokka kohti Suomea), which aims to boost the growth of companies by promoting the placement of international talents on the Finnish labour market.

The actions of the UNICOM project will be piloted and developed in cooperation with partner companies, which have already committed themselves to the project during the application phase. The actions are divided into three distinct work packages:

  • Internships at companies for doctoral researchers and post-docs,
  • workplace coaching for international talents, and
  • campaigns and support services for companies.



HEI LIFE project

Higher Education Institutions’ Support for International Academics and Staff – Living, Integration, Family and Employment in Finland (HEI LIFE) project aims at building national models for Finnish higher education institutions to support the integration of international academics, staff and their families. The project is funded by the Ministry of Education and Culture (1.9.2020 - 31.8.2022).

University of Turku is in charge of a subproject, focusing on integration of international researchers and staff to Finnish working life and the innovation environment. The aim of the subproject is to strengthen company collaboration for international researchers and other staff by piloting a mentoring programme and developing new collaboration models.


Supervisor Training

More information on Supervisor Training web page.