FAQ for applications to the PhD council


What is a consortium?

A consortium is a collaboration between at least one university and one university college. Additional universities or university colleges may also be part of the collaboration. It is a prerequisite for your application that your PhD project is part of such a collaboration.

How do I begin my application?

The first thing you should do is to contact a university college or a university. See a list of partners (only in Danish). This is very important as the individual cooperation with partners or consortiums typically have internal deadlines that can be placed early in the spring. You can subsequently agree on the further application procedure with the relevant contacts at the universities and university colleges. This means that it is not sufficient that you yourself have found a relevant supervisor.

What is a cooperation agreement?

It is a prerequisite for your application that a cooperation agreement is in place between the participating institutions: at least one university and one university college. The cooperation agreement, appendix E of the application, must give an account of relevant conditions such as place of employment, how your workload will be implemented, distribution of overhead as well as supervision.

Can I apply for a fellowship on the basis of a Master’s degree?

The relevant graduate school must decide whether you are qualified to apply for a PhD fellowship. You should therefore contact them and ask.

Can I apply even if I have not completed my qualifying examination?

The relevant graduate school must decide whether you are qualified to apply for a PhD fellowship. If they give you a preliminary approval, you must submit a copy of the qualifying exam certificate to the PhD Council’s secretariat within the deadline that is stated in the application guidelines.

Can I submit supplementary appendices with my application?

No. You can only submit the appendices that are listed in the application guidelines. Any additional appendices will not be included in the assessment of the application.

When can I begin my PhD project?

PhD projects are expected to start at January 1. 

Do I have to be employed at a university college to apply?

No. The only requirement is that you must be able, both during your studies and subsequently, to teach at the university colleges and to engage in research and development in the educational field. Your conditions of employment are part of the cooperation agreement that the consortium behind your application must enter into (appendix E).

Can I complete my PhD project on a part-time basis?

No. The PhD fellowships are defined as three-year projects.

What are the typical reasons for an application being rejected?

The typical reasons for rejection are:

  • The research question is not sufficiently precise and well-defined
  • The coherence between research question, theoretical background and method design is not clear and well-founded
  • The method design is not sufficiently clear and relevant
  • The account of how the project contributes with new input to already existing national and international research and knowledge is not sufficient
  • The project description does not contain the elements stated in the application guidelines to a sufficient degree
  • The application does not sufficiently live up to the evaluation criteria stated in the call for proposals
  • The project does not deal with research to a sufficient degree, instead having the character of a development project