Applying for a doctoral stydy right at the Doctoral Programme Brain & Mind, University of Helsinki

The application periods during the academic year 2017 - 2018 are 1-14.9.2017 and 3-16.4.2018.  

University of Helsinki's general information on doctoral training and applying for doctoral studies:



The applications, along with the required additional documents, must be submitted by the end of the application period. Applications are submitted via an electronic application form, which closes at 15:00 (UTC +3) on the last day of the round of applications.


The application periods in the academic year 2017 - 2018 are 1-14.9.2017 and 3-16.4.2018


According to the Universities Act (558/2009) section 37 eligible applicants for studies leading to a postgraduate research degree have completed

  1. An applicable second-cycle university degree,
  2. An applicable second-cycle degree from a university of applied sciences, or
  3. An applicable education at an institution abroad providing eligibility for equivalent higher education in the country in question. 
  4. In addition, applicants who have been accepted to complete a Licenciate of Medicine or Licenciate of Dentistry degree in the Faculty of Medicine, University of Helsinki, are eligible to apply.

An applicant may also be admitted to pursue a postgraduate research degree if the University finds him or her to have otherwise obtained the required knowledge and skills.

Applicants of the Doctoral Programme Brain & Mind typically have a Master's degree or equivalent and a background in biology, medicine, psychology, cognitive sciences, physics, technology or another relevant field.


  • Motivation and CV of the applicant, success in previous studies
  • Demonstration of adequate knowledge in relevant fields and potential of the applicant to develop into an independent researcher
  • Scientific relevance and ambition of the research plan, use of relevant methodology
  • Thematic fit of the research plan with the doctoral programme profile
  • Funding plan and feasibility of the thesis project within the intended timeframe (net time 4 years)
  • Supervisory and follow-up of progress arrangements, quality of the research environment 

In addition, the doctoral programme may organize an interview or an entrance exam.



All applicants wishing to be considered must submit the following documents:

A. Electronic Application (form open during the application period), including

A1. A research proposal. Please use the University of Helsinki research plan template ( to draw up your research plan. Please write your plan in English. The following fields related to the research plan are included in the electronic application form (the number in parentheses indicates the maximum number of characters per field, spaces included):

  • Brief summary of the research plan (1500)
  • Significance of the project in relation to current knowledge (1500)
  • Objectives of the research (2000)
  • Effects and impact beyond academia (500)
  • Research methods (2000)
  • Research material to be used and its significance for the research project (1000)
  • Data management plan (1500)
  • Critical points for success, alternative implementation strategies (500)
  • Ethical issues (1000)
  • Publication plan (including a preliminary outline of a monograph) (1000)
  • Methods for ensuring open access (more information available on the University Library's website, 500)
  • Schedule for the research (500)
  • Funding plan for research and doctoral studies (500)
  • Applied funding and salaried positions (500)
  • Motivation for choosing the University of Helsinki as the site of doctoral research and motivation for selecting the doctoral programme (500)
  • Mobility plan (500)
  • The most important research literature and/or sources (1000)

A2. A study plan. Please acquaint yourself with the doctoral programme’s curriculum / degree requirements before drawing up your study plan:
Doctoral Programme's degree requirementsB&M degree structure and course catalogue in UH WebOodi
The degree requirements are summarized as:

    • Doctoral thesis
    • Discipline specific studies (30 ECTS)
    • General competence studies (10 ECTS)

A3. The title and summary of your Master´s thesis or equivalent or a description of previous academic publications.

A4. The names of the supervisors, who have agreed to supervise your thesis. 
Each doctoral candidate has a personal supervisor/supervisors. It is the responsibility of the applicant to find a supervisor and to discuss and agree on the research and study plans with him/her. Contact a principal investigator who is working in a field that matches your background knowledge and interests in research. An updating list of principal investigators is available here: www.brain-mind/group-list. In addition, you can look for other potential supervisors from the University's research portal TUHAT (

B. Attachments to the Electronic Application

B1. Copies of your previous degree certificate(s) (Master's degree or equivalent and potential Bachelor's degree)

B2. Transcript of records for your previous degree(s) (Master's degree or equivalent and potential Bachelor's degree)

B3. Verification of language skills, unless proven by the Master's degree (see instructions for EnglishFinnish or Swedish)

B4. A permit by an Ethical Review Board and/or by the National Animal Experiment Board, if required by the research arrangement

B5. A signed letter of commitment from the responsible professor as well as the supervisor(s), who have agreed to supervise your thesis. 

C. Additional documents to be sent by post (applicants whose previous degree is not from the University of Helsinki)

C1. An officially certified copy of your previous degree certificate (Master's degree or equivalent)

C2. An official transcript of studies icluded in the Master's degree (or equivalent)  More information on submitting the documents related to eligibility

C3. Verification of language skills, unless proven by the Master's degree (see instructions forr English, Finnish or Swedish)



The applications, along with the required additional documents, must be submitted by the end of the application period. Applications are submitted using an electronic application form (links below), which closes at 15.00 (Helsinki time) on the last day of the round of applications. Please note that even if you use the application form in Finnish or Swedish, the research plan should be written in English. Those applicants who are required to send certified copies of the additional documents by post must make sure that these documents arrive by the end of the application period.


APPLICATION FORM in English (please use the application form for Doctoral School in Health Sciences)

HAKULOMAKE suomeksi (Terveyden tutkimuksen tutkijakoulun hakulomake)

ANSÖKNING på svenska (Forskarskolan in hälsoforskning) 


Applications and additional documents sent by email are not accepted. Incomplete applications are not considered.

The certified copies of additional documents must be delivered to the Admissions Services of the University of Helsinki. For instructions on how to submit your documents, please see here.

For questions about the admission process and the required documents, please contact the Admissions Services This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .



The doctoral programme's steering group assesses all applications to the programme that meet the formal requirements. The steering group draws up an admission proposal indicating the names of the admitted and rejected applicants, together with the reasons for each decision. The final decision is made by the degree-awarding Faculty.

Once the decisions have been made, applicants will be informed of them. If the decision is positive, the offered study place must be accepted within the set time limit. Should the decision be negative, it will be accompanied by information on the appeals procedure.

Timetable for the decisions, deadlines for accepting the offer and default dates for the beginning of the study right

Application period

Letters of acceptance to be sent by

Deadline for accepting the offer

Study right begins