Doctoral Training at the Faculty of Humanities

​All postgraduate students that have been granted a right to doctoral studies belong to a Doctoral Programme.

The Faculty of Humanities at the University of Turku has two Doctoral Programmes.     

>Juno is the Doctoral Programme for History, Culture and Arts Studies.
The departments offering doctoral studies are: Archaeology; Art History; Comparative Literature; Comparative Religion; Cultural Heritage Studies; Cultural History; Digital Culture; European Ethnology; Finnish History; Finnish Literature; Folkloristics; Gender Studies; European and World History; Landscape Studies; Media Studies; Musicology 

>Utuling is the Doctoral Programme for Language and Translation Studies.
The departments offering doctoral studies are: English, Spanish, Italian, Classical Languages, Scandinavian Languages, French, German, Finnish Language and Finno-Ugric Languages.

Funding your studies
Finnish universities do not charge tuition fees. On the other hand, the students are expected to take care of their own living costs. Membership in a Doctoral Programme is not a guarantee for funding from the programme. Doctoral researchers of the programme may receive funding from various sources. Doctoral Programmes announce a certain amount of salaried doctoral researcher positions each year but most postgraduate students receive funding from other sources.


Information about scholarships available for foreign students studying in Finland see Finnish National Agency for Education
Useful information on the Finnish higher education system can be found from the website of Study in Finland.

Postgraduate study guide

All information concerning the postgraduate studies from applying to graduation is available in -> postgraduate study guide (2022-2023).

-> Postgraduate Study Guide (2023-2024). Valid from 1 August 2023 onwards.

Aims and structure of postgraduate studies

According to the Decree on University Degrees, the aim of postgraduate studies is that the student

“becomes well-versed in his/her own field of research and its social significance and gains knowledge and skills needed to apply scientific research methods independently and critically and to produce new scientific knowledge within his/her field of research; becomes conversant with the development, basic problems and research methods of his/her own field of research; and gains such knowledge of the general theory of science and of other disciplines relating to his/her own field of research as enables him/her to follow developments in them.” (The Government Decree on University Degrees [Valtioneuvoston Asetus yliopistojen tutkinnoista], 794/2004: section 21)

General structure of postgraduate studies

In the Decree on University Degrees from the year 2004, the status of the doctoral degree as the primary postgraduate degree is emphasized. The postgraduate student is admitted to take the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree. The doctoral degree comprises of 240 ECTS credits, which include the doctoral dissertation worth 200 ECTS credits and other studies worth 40-60 ECTS credits.

It is possible for the student to take the licentiate degree of 150 ECTS credits, which comprises of the licentiate thesis worth 110 ECTS credits and other studies worth 40-60 ECTS credits. If the student continues his or her studies towards a PhD degree, the studies worth 40-60 ECTS will be approved as a part of the Doctor of Philosophy degree.

Doctoral dissertation

Doctoral dissertation and its format

A doctoral dissertation is a consistent scholarly work on a subject which lies within the Faculty of Humanities’ field of research and can be studied there as a major subject. The dissertation should be based on independent research that makes an original contribution to scientific knowledge.

A doctoral dissertation is either a monograph or a compilation of several separate scholarly articles. The extent of the dissertation required for a doctoral degree is 200 ECTS credits. The format of the dissertation should be discussed and agreed between the doctoral researcher and the supervisors at an early stage.

The dissertation can be written in Finnish or English and, by agreement, in any of the languages taught at doctoral level in the Faculty of Humanities at the University of Turku. The dissertation may include articles written in different languages. The choice of languages will affect the selection of the pre-examiners and the opponent, which should be taken into consideration when choosing the language(s).  

Monograph dissertation

A monograph dissertation is a previously unpublished research that is written by the postgraduate student/doctoral researcher and is published as a consistent work. The recommended length of a monograph dissertation is approximately 200-250 pages (500 000-750 000 characters), appendices not included.

The monograph cannot be previously published. However, the doctoral researcher can publish independent articles on the theme of their doctoral research already before the doctoral defence. Publication plans should be discussed with supervisors. A monograph manuscript is previously non peer-reviewed, and therefore supervisors must take particular care to ensure its scientific quality before the pre-examination.

Article-based dissertation

An article-based dissertation is a consistent scholarly work composed of articles. The Government Decree on University Degrees states:

“As a doctoral dissertation may also be approved a number of scientific publications or manuscripts vetted for publication deemed sufficient by the university which deal with the same set of problems and a paper summarising the findings or some other work which meets corresponding scientific criteria. The publications may include co- authored publications if the author's independent contribution to them can be demonstrated.” (Government Decree on University Degrees [Valtioneuvoston asetus yliopistojen tutkinnoista], 794/2004, section 22.)

Structure and Scope 

 An article-based doctoral dissertation consists of 3-5 articles and a summary section. Articles must as a rule be either published or approved for publication (so that the publisher no longer requires any changes to be made) before submitting the doctoral manuscript for preliminary examination. However, one article that has not yet been accepted for publication can be included. The article that has not been accepted must be though submitted but the acceptance may be pending.  

When planning the overall structure (and the number of articles) of an article-based dissertation, it is important to take into account the discipline, the amount of research the author has done independently, the length of the articles, their scientific quality and the importance of the publication forum. Supervisors are responsible for ensuring that the overall quality of the article-based dissertation meets the general criteria for doctoral dissertations.

When the article-based dissertation is presented for pre-examination, it must be accompanied by a list of the works in which the articles have been published or accepted for publication. Furthermore, when co-authored publications are included, the postgraduate must submit a written statement explaining the nature of his or her independent contribution to these publications. This information must be included in the summary section of the dissertation in a clear and distinct manner.  

The Articles 

 The articles that constitute the dissertation must be published in peer-reviewed publications.  These include national and international academic journals and edited volumes.   The set of articles should be planned with care. Each article must contain new information and contribute to the study as a whole. As published articles may not be altered after the publication to ease the compilation and summarizing of the thesis, minor repetition is allowed.  

An article-based doctoral dissertation may, taking into account the practices of the discipline, contain one peer-reviewed review article at most. The article cannot merely be a literature review or a summary: it must produce addressable new research-based information, such as a methodological contribution or a meta-analysis of previous research. The suitability of a review article as a part of the doctoral dissertation is to be discussed with the supervisor. In the discussion, the supervisor determines whether the review article fulfils the requirements for the inclusion of the article in the dissertation. 

When planning the publication schedule for the articles, it is advisable to be as specific as possible and to learn the publication processes and schedules of the publishers of interest. It should be taken into consideration, that the writing processes of the individual articles, including the referee feedback and finalization, are bound to overlap. Also, the acceptance for publication and the issuing of the publications will affect the overall research project and the completion of the dissertation. The supervisors’ input in choosing the suitable publishers is essential.   

As a publishing agreement is being drawn up with a publisher, the doctoral researcher should ensure that they still have the right to republish the article as part of the doctoral thesis. If the publisher sets a time period within which republishing is forbidden (embargo), it should not contradict the planned schedule of the dissertation defence.  The articles bound for the dissertation do not expire. In case that the publication process is prolonged and the author or the supervisor feels that a part of the article is outdated, it is advisable to address this concern in the summary section of the thesis, which includes an evaluation of the results.  

Co-authored articles   

An article-based doctoral dissertation may be partly or entirely composed of co-authored publications. If all the articles in the dissertation are co-authored, the doctoral researcher must be the main author of at least one article. In all co-authored articles, it is essential to clearly document and define the doctoral researcher’s individual input.   The contributions of the doctoral researcher may be stated in the article itself, but doctoral researcher’s personal research input must be clearly and adequately presented in the summary section of the dissertation. In case a co-authored article is included in the dissertation, but the article has not yet been accepted for publication, the postgraduate must obtain the co-authors’ permission to use the paper in his or her thesis.  

Prior to the pre-examination, the doctoral researcher must present the whole of the dissertation to their supervisors, including a statement of their contribution to the co-authored articles. This way the supervisors may estimate, whether the doctoral researcher’s input to the study matches the standards of a doctoral dissertation and whether it can be sent for pre-examination.  

The account of the postgraduate’s contribution to the study is also essential to the pre-examination. The pre-examiners (and later on, the opponent) must be able to evaluate the extent and academic merits of the doctoral researcher’s input.   The same co-authored article may be included in several article-based dissertations, as long as the above-mentioned report regarding each author’s contribution is attached.  

The summary section  

The article-based doctoral dissertation forms a coherent whole, and its goals, theoretical frame of reference, methods and results are presented in the summary section of the thesis.  The summary is the centre of the dissertation, and its significance to the evaluation of the entire thesis is essential.  

In addition to giving an analytical introduction and presenting the research goals, the summary must round up the whole of the study. The summary section must contain an integrated and critical evaluation of the results and the rendering, not just a mere summary of the articles. Therefore, the summary section of the dissertation should be carefully planned. As the article-based dissertation is meant to be a coherent volume, it is advisable to emphasize the connections between the articles. The summary section is not a digest version of the articles, rather it is an opportunity to revisit the choices, and evaluate the outcomes of the articles. It is noteworthy, that unlike in a monograph (which includes separate chapters for the introduction and the conclusions), in the case of an article-based dissertation, the summary section must include both an analytical, scientific introduction to the study as well as its results, discussions conclusions and significance of the research.  

The recommended length for the summary section is 40–80 pages (50 000-90 000 characters), excluding the appendices.  The length of the summary section can also be evaluated in relation to the number of articles.

The general regulations regarding doctoral degrees and dissertation are included in the Government Decree on University Degrees, 1039/2013, sections 21 and 22. ch%5Bpika%5D=University%20Degrees



Language revision of the Dissertation

It is the doctoral researcher’s responsibility to ensure that the language of a dissertation written in a non-native language is revised to a publishable standard. The final revisions should take place after the pre-examination, at the latest, when the work otherwise has reached its final form. Already during the stage of pre-examination, it is necessary to pay attention to the grammatical correctness of the language used and to its fluent linguistic form. In order to achieve a publishable standard, hiring a professional, native-speaking language reviser is nearly always necessary. The costs of the revision are undertaken by the doctoral candidate but the Faculty offers support for the costs.

If the dissertation is written in a non-native language, the permission will be granted only after the doctoral researcher has submitted this statement. In order to obtain permission to defend the dissertation at a public examination, the language reviser’s statement must be delivered to the Faculty:

Language revision support

The doctoral researcher can apply for a language revision grant (max. 1500 € if the dissertation is less than 200 pages in total and max. 2000 € if the dissertation is more than 200 pages) from the Faculty for language revision of a dissertation written in a non-native language. The doctoral researcher pays the language revision first themself and only afterwards applies for the language revision support. 
In the case of a monograph dissertation, the language revision can be applied when the dissertation has been submitted to pre-examination. In case of the article that is part of article-based dissertation the language revision support can be applied already before the pre-examination. In order to be eligible to apply for Faculty of Humanities language revision support the doctoral researcher has to in case of English-language article use for one article the FALCS service provided by the UTUGS (See >FALCS ). When applying for the language revision support the doctoral researcher must include the statement of their supervisor noting that the article is part of doctoral researcher’s article-based dissertation and that it is ready to be submitted to a journal/book.

The language revision support can be applied by sending a free-form application to The application should include the title of the dissertation / article, the name of the supervisor and doctoral programme, the number of pages that have been revised and other grounds for the sum to be applied. In case of an article the application should also include the statement of the supervisor and in case of a monograph dissertation or the summary section of an article-based monograph a copy of the language reviser’s statement.  

More information on the language revision support can be obtained from

Eligibility for postgraduate studies

The general prerequisite for the right to complete postgraduate studies is a Master's degree or an equivalent higher university degree. Applicants must hold an applicable higher university degree or must have completed an applicable education abroad which, in the country in question, qualifies the student for postgraduate studies equivalent to those offered at the University of Turku, or must be able to otherwise demonstrate the knowledge and readiness needed for scientific postgraduate studies. A degree or other form of education will be considered relevant if the work is of a high standard, includes advanced studies (or equivalent), and is in a field that adequately prepares the candidate for conducting the research proposed in the dissertation plan/preliminary research plan.

Applicants must also have sufficient knowledge of the languages needed to conduct their postgraduate studies.

A single Master's degree cannot form the basis for more than one postgraduate degree. Thus, applicants with, for instance, a Master's and a doctoral degree in another field cannot complete a Doctor of Philosophy degree at the Faculty of Humanities without first completing a Master's degree in a relevant humanist discipline.

Acceptance of the study place and registration

An accepted applicant has to notify University of Turku of their acceptance of the study'place 

according to the instructions given in the admission notification. If the accepted applicant does not give the notification in the time indicated, they shall forfeit the study place. A person admitted to more than one university or polytechnic degree has to notify only the degree in which he/she accepts the study place. Notification is binding, it is not possible to cancel or change it later.

According to Finnish legislation, student may accept only one study place leading to a higher education degree in Finland during one academic term (autumn term 1.8.-31.12. or spring term 1.1.-31.7). This rule applies to all higher education. Higher education degrees included in the rule are Bachelor degrees and Master degrees awarded by Finnish universities of applied sciences, Bachelor degrees and Master degrees awarded by Finnish universities and Licentiate and Doctoral degrees awarded by Finnish universities. The only exceptions are Transfer student selections, the Åland Polytechnic and the Police College of Finland.

After graduation

After graduation, doctors in the field of humanities typically find themselves doing project work which reflects their education and gradually turns into a permanent position. The most typical work places include universities and various research centres, culture and art organizations, the public sector, and specialist projects of different associations and organizations. Doctors also work in study and research administration. It would seem that an ability to adapt to different tasks and develop your own expertise according to what is needed at the time is something typical for a graduated doctor as well as an ability to see the wider picture and understand change.

Many who have completed a doctoral degree wish to continue their research. Help for funding applications is offered by the Research Funding Unit, the specialists of which are able to give advice on calls organized by the Academy of Finland as well as questions regarding EU initiative calls and also give tips on opportunities one does not always even think of. Research funding specialists can be contacted at: tutkimusrahoitus(at)

Most foundations and trusts require that the applicant has a written commitment from the university. This university commitment, an affiliation agreement, is made between you and your School and it describes the position and responsibilities of the researcher at the university. Those with a university commitment are guaranteed the usual research necessities such as network, mail, printing, library and information services to the extent that is typically available to doctoral candidates and researchers. Office space can normally be given only to funded researchers.

Agreement matters in the School of Language and Translation Studies are handled by Department Coordinator Maija Österlund (maija.osterlund(at) and in the School of History, Culture and Arts Studies by Department Coordinator Katariina Teräs (kamiko(at)

Information for post-doctoral researches at the University of Turku can be found ->

Contact info

In all matters concerning postgraduate studies at the faculty of humanities, contact: