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Guidelines for the doctoral work plan

Part of the doctoral study plan

Working title

Name of advisor and possible consultant

Initial findings: Analysis of the current state of the discipline of doctoral study, with several references to the basic literature. Here it is necessary to specifically state what is known, what is unknown, and what would be useful to know and why.

Basic question(s): ensuing from the initial findings. It is advisable for this section to combine questions which are relatively specific (which can also be answered) with more general questions that provide the doctoral student basic direction for a later period of study.

Methodology used/Progress of work: This is the main body of the work plan, together with the general schedule. Let this tie in to the questions. Of course it is possible (especially at a later stage) to list multiple alternatives (“depending on whether something works out/does not work out”).

Location: where the research will be carried out (if relevant) and possibly the owner/manager of these places. Whether a permit is necessary to enter or work in these areas, or to work with protected species and how to get such authorization.


Funding: Here you should state whether there is any funding available for the project and for what time period. If not, or if there is only available funding for part of the project (which is almost always the case), indicate how the situation can be resolved. It is useful to state whether the topic is tied to any grant project and how.

General timetable: this should be relatively specific for the first part of studies and only general for the later period. The timetable should contain information about (i) data collection (specified separately for each area of data collection), (ii) data processing and publication preparation. There should also be a timetable for planned stays abroad.

Possibly additional consultation/connections: Here please list the names of people and their workplace, if useful, and especially the field in which they will be consulted. Here it is good to mention other similar thesis or dissertation topics already assigned and being researched.

Typical length: 1-3 pages

This outline can also be used as a guideline for presenting the topic during admissions interviews.

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