The background requirement for eligibility for a doctoral study right is either a master degree in Business, other higher education level degree or an equivalent foreign degree that has been completed in an institute part of the official higher education of the country. The degree must also have included an advanced level thesis. The grade of the thesis or equivalent, as well as the overall grade of your advanced level studies must be at least “good” (GPA 3 on a scale of 0-4, Finnish grade 3/5 or equivalent). In addition, there are requirements for English language certification. Your research topic must fit into the focus areas of the main subject and all the other criteria must be met. These admission criteria have been described in the following sections.
Admission requirements concerning background education
The criteria for the eligibility of the study background has been described in the next applicant groups 1-4. The applicant’s study background must fill all the criteria mentioned in one of the groups to be eligible for doctoral studies. If the applicant is not eligible, they cannot be granted a doctoral study right.
If the major subject decides necessary, a qualified applicant must supplement their studies, for example, if they have graduated in other subject than the major subject that they are applying to or if the background degree is not in the field of business or if they do not possess sufficient competencies for completing a doctoral degree in the chosen major subject. The professor of the major determines whether supplementary studies are required or not and they must be completed before completing studies that are part of the doctoral degree. The maximum of supplementary studies is 60 ECTS. Supplementary studies must have an average grade of “good” (3/5 or equivalent).
- Applicants with a Finnish Master’s degree in Economics and Business Administration or other field who have mainly achieved the grade good (cum laude approbator, 3/5 or equivalent) or higher for their pro gradu thesis or equivalent and the grade good (3/5 or equivalent) or higher for their major subject studies. If the grade is lower than this, it is possible for the applicant to be accepted through other merits (excellent research plan and/or previous peer reviewed publication).
- Applicants with a degree in a Finnish university of applied sciences and the degree includes a thesis. The thesis must be completed with the overall grade good (3/5 or equivalent) or higher and the average of the major subject studies must be good (3/5 or equivalent). If the grade is lower than this, it is possible for the applicant to be accepted through other merits (excellent research plan and/or previous peer reviewed publication).
- Applicants with a Finnish licentiate or doctoral degree in Business or other field.
- Applicants who have acquired a relevant degree abroad which, in the country in question, provides eligibility for further university studies and for pursuing a doctorate. Applicants who have obtained their qualifications abroad must demonstrate their competence to pursue a research project by detailing their major studies (that include a Master’s thesis or other similar study project that corresponds to a pro gradu thesis) for which mainly at least the grade good (GPA of all studies must be at least 3 on a scale of 0-4 and additionally with a degree completed in other than an EU country, GMAT must be at least 600 points) has been awarded and which have been completed before applying to the doctoral programme. If the Master’s thesis or other study project has been written in a language other than Finnish, Swedish or English, an English summary must be attached to the application. Applicants with a degree completed abroad must also attach their original thesis in PDF-form on the application form. Major subjects will also check the thesis with a plagiarism detection program.
Other admission requirements for doctoral study right
- The proposed research topic must be scientifically and practically relevant and connect to the research strategy and focus areas of the pursued major subject (the links to research groups can be found on our webpage). The applicant must select their major subject when applying and the applicant must have the competencies and readiness for doctoral studies and undertaking a dissertation. The major evaluates the competences during admission and the requirements vary between subjects.
Required competencies in major subjects:
- International Business and Sales Management: high scientific level of research plan and theoretical contribution in the field of International Business and Sales Management, high goal orientation of publication plan concerning international peer-reviewed journal publications.
- Accounting and Finance: The requirement is that the applicant has taken enough courses in Accounting and/or Finance. The applicant should also demonstrate knowledge relating to research methodologies relevant for the planned doctoral dissertation through previous thesis or equivalent.
- Service Management; Innovation Management, Business and Law; Tourism Marketing and Management: it must be apparent from the research plan that the applicant has familiarized themselves with previous research through which is able to indicate a justified research gap, the research problem must be well-justified and defined, the applicant must have good knowledge of a method that suits the research problem.
- There must be enough supervision resources to be allocated for the proposed thesis. The major subject which the applicant selects when applying to a doctoral study right will decide the availability of supervision resources.
- When applying for a doctoral study right through student admission, a maximum of 5 page long research plan is required (reference list is not included into the maximum). The plan must be of high quality and e.g. the following aspects will be evaluated: what is the scientific contribution of the proposed research topic, how realistic and coherent the research plan is and how it is executed, acknowledgement of the research ethical questions.
Contents of the plan:
- starting points and theoretical basis of the research, previous research
- aims of the research, research tasks and questions
- research methods and data, administration of data
- working plan, working plan for part of the tasks. Especially in article dissertations it is important to describe what kind of parts the research will be conducted in and published (when applying to positions, a more detail description is required but when applying to a doctoral study right, it is not required to have a comprehensive plan of all the articles)
- schedule and funding plan
- publication plan
- evaluation of opportunities to exploit the results of the research, societal significance of the research results
- Proficiency in English.
If the applicant fulfils at least one of the following requirements, a separate language test is not required but the applicant is to prove their English proficiency with the applicable degree certificate and the transcript of their academic record:
- English as foreign language included in at least a Bachelor-level degree conducted in Nordic country (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden) or in an EU/EEA country.
- Bachelor's or Master's degree conducted in English language in a Nordic country (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden) or in an EU/EEA country.
- Bachelor's or Master's degree conducted in English language in Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, the United Kingdom or the United States.
The applicants are to prove their language skills in English as follows if they do not fill the aforementioned requirements:
English language test:
TOEFL paper-based: Total score 600 and Writing 4.0
TOEFL Internet-based: Total Score 100 and Writing 22
IELTS (Academic): Overall Score 6.5 and Writing 5.5
PTE (Pearson Test of English), min. 59 points
C1 Advanced (CAE), pass levels A, B or C / C2 Proficiency (CPE), pass levels A, B, C or level C1 Certificate