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PhD guidelines

Apart from the PhD regulations, Leiden University also employs a set of guidelines that lay down the minimal requirements for the supervision, training and available facilities for PhD candidates.

PhD categories

The guidelines apply to PhD candidates with employee status and self-funded PhD candidates. If you are an external PhD candidate, you are subject to individual arrangements. This may mean that not all of the PhD guidelines below apply to you. Speak to your supervisor to confirm the guidelines that apply to you.

You can find the definition of the categories below:

PhD candidates that have an employment contract with Leiden University which includes the obligation to obtain a doctoral degree. These PhD candidates have among other things:

  • admission to a Graduate School
  • training and supervision plans
  • supervisor (and co-supervisor)
  • employee number
  • salary

PhD candidates who do not have an employment contract with Leiden University, but who will have their doctoral defence ceremony at Leiden University and whose main objective is pursuing a PhD. These PhD candidates have:

  • admission to a Graduate School
  • training and supervision plans
  • supervisor or co-supervisor

A self-funded PhD candidate won't receive a salary from Leiden University, but reveices funds and/or time to pursue a doctorate:

  • scholarship awarded by Leiden University
  • scholarship awarded by another organisation (European Union, a foreign university, subsidizing institutions)
  • no scholarship, but funding or time from their employer

Unlike a contracted PhD candidate, an external PhD candidate does not have a university employment contract or a grant. An external PhD candidate has set him- or herself the goal of obtaining a PhD and has found a lecturer at Leiden University who is willing to act as his or her PhD supervisor. External PhD candidates do not receive a salary, and they follow the entire PhD track in their own time. External PhD candidates have certain attributes, including:

  • registration in the Graduate School
  • programme plan and guidance plan
  • PhD plan
  • supervisor

If you are an external PhD candidate, you are subject to individual arrangements. This may mean that not all of the PhD guidelines below apply to you. Speak to your supervisor to confirm the guidelines that apply to you.

Guidelines

The guidelines below apply to all (self-funded) PhD candidates who were admitted to their Graduate School after 21 april 2015 (new PhD candidates). Were you admitted before 21 april 2015? Then only the first five guidelines apply to you.

  1. Self-funded PhD candidates are registered in SAP as guest employees or PhD candidates with an unpaid appointment. They are registered in the category ‘self-funded PhD candidates’.
     
  2. All PhD candidates are entitled to a LU Card that grants them access to the library. They may also use copying and printing facilities without charge, within the rules that apply in the faculty for academic staff.
     
  3. All PhD candidates are entitled to a desk in the faculty.
     
  4. The faculty must clearly inform prospective PhD candidates about the available facilities (including courses, research costs etc.) when offering them a place in a Graduate School.
     
  5. All institutes hold regular sessions on job market prospects for their own PhD candidates.
     
  6. All PhD candidates are given the opportunity, within reason, to visit at least two academic conferences during their period of appointment. (new PhD candidates)
     
  7. A training and supervision plan must have been drawn up for all PhD candidates within three months of the start of their PhD programme. (new PhD candidates)
     
  8. All PhD candidates have a second supervisor or a co-supervisor alongside the first supervisor. The training and supervision plan documents the division of responsibilities between the different supervisors. (new PhD candidates)
     
  9. Each PhD candidate has an annual review or monitoring meeting each year with one or two independent members of staff. The quality of the supervision is an important aspect of this meeting. (new PhD candidates)
     
  10. A go/no go decision is taken at the end of the first year of the PhD programme. This is documented in writing. (new PhD candidates)
     
  11. All PhD candidates follow a compulsory programme for the full period of appointment that at least comprises (new PhD candidates):  
    • 140 hours of academic activities (training in the candidate’s specialism, conference attendance, etc.), and
    • 140 hours of activities focusing on transferable skills, including at least one training course on academic integrity.
    • Members of staff who are supervising a PhD candidate for the first time must also follow such a course.

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