PhD studies

In order to solve current and future societal challenges, we need creativity, the ability to think in new ways and deep knowledge. Do you want to contribute? Then PhD studies could be something for you. Below you can read about the PhD-education offered at the University of Gävle, general eligibility and how to apply for an available doctoral position.

The University of Gävle carries out research to foster a sustainable human living environment. The research is concentrated to four strategic research areas; Sustainable city development, Health-promoting work, Intelligent industry and Innovative learning.

During your PhD studies, you will conduct independent research projects. You will get the tools to solve research problems with the right choice of methods, and you will practice your ability to think critically, constructively and analytically. You will also be able to practice your ability to transfer knowledge in a pedagogical manner to others.

The aim is that you will become an independent researcher ready to take on complex tasks within trade and industry, the public sector as well as at universities. As a PhD student, you are an important part of our research environment and a significant representative of the University of Gävle.

PhD study subject areas at the University of Gävle

At University of Gävle we have degree-awarding powers within the areas Built Environment, Health-Promoting Working Life and Educational Sciences.

Within these areas there are eleven third-cycle subject areas:

  • Caring Science
  • Curriculum studies
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Energy Systems
  • Environmental Psychology
  • Geospatial Information Sciences
  • Industrial Engineering and Management
  • Indoor Environment
  • Occupational Health Science
  • Social Work
  • Sustainability Science

Four years of studies

The PhD education consists of 240 ETCS which corresponds to four years full-time studies and ends with a doctoral degree. It is possible to graduate with a licentiate degree after two years of studies. It is common to be offered departmental service such as teaching first- or second-cycle students or administrative tasks up to 20 percent, that prolongs the study time with up to one year.

The education is planned and performed in close collaboration with your supervisors. Most of the time you work in research projects that result in a thesis. You also take third-cycle courses. These are regulated by the general syllabus for the third-cycle programs.

How do I apply for a PhD position?

Available positions are announced

Available PhD positions are announced at the University’s page with available jobs. The link is only available in Swedish. Positions can be announced throughout the year.


In order to be able to apply for a PhD position, you need to fulfil the eligibility requirements: you must have acquired 240 ECTS External link. from past education comprising at least 60 ECTS of studies at the advanced level. Depending on the research area of your PhD studies, other qualifications might also be required. The different requirements are regulated in the admission regulations at the University of Gävle and in the general syllabus for third-cycle programs.

General eligibility

A prospective doctoral student meets the general entry requirement for doctoral education if he or she:

  1. has been awarded a degree at advanced (equivalent to second-cycle in Sweden) level, or,
  2. has satisfied the requirements for courses comprising at least 240 credits (ECTS) of which at least 60 credits (ECTS) were awarded at advanced level, or
  3. has acquired substantially equivalent knowledge in some other way in Sweden or abroad.

Kindly note that 60 credits from a non-EHEA country might not be the same as 60 ECTS. Also, note that your studies must have been completed at an internationally recognised university.

Specific eligibility

All prospective doctoral students must show proficiency in English equivalent to the Swedish upper secondary school course English B/English 6 (with a passing grade).

Information about Meeting the English requirement External link.

Some doctoral educations require Swedish language proficiency equivalent to (the Swedish upper secondary school) Swedish course 3/B.

Information about Meeting the Swedish requirement External link.

Documentation requirements – foreign academic credentials

At External link. you can find instructions how to document your studies depending on which country your studies are from. Make sure to select your country of study.

The admission process

Applications are handled by each faculty respectively. The selection criteria are regulated in the specific third-cycle general syllabus.

Directors of doctoral education

Shahnaz Amiri

Studierektor för forskarutbildning vid profilområdet Byggd miljö

Jose Chilo

Studierektor för forskarutbildning vid profilområdet Byggd miljö

Kourosh Tatar

Studierektor för forskarutbildning vid profilområdet Byggd miljö

Hans Richter

Studierektor för forskarutbildning, Akademin för hälsa och arbetsliv

Björn Haglund

Studierektor för forskarutbildningen inom området Utbildningsvetenskap

This page was last updated 2024-04-21