Norwegian version
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New PhD programme in Social Sciences

The programme was approved at the OsloMet university board meeting 17 June 2021.

The PhD programme in Social Sciences is a new PhD degree program at the Faculty of Social Sciences (SAM). The programme aims to facilitate innovative interdisciplinary research anchored in the Social Sciences (including humanistic and technological approaches) and closely connected to the professional fields under study. The programme has four specializations, based in each of the faculty’s four departments:

  1. Business Administration, Innovation and Governance, BIG (Oslo Business School)
  2. Journalism and Media Studies, JMF (Department of Journalism and Media Studies)
  3. Information, Library and Archival Studies, PIBA (Department of Archivistics, Library and Information Science)
  4. Social Work and Social Policy, SASP (Department of Social Work, Child Welfare and Social Policy)

All PhD candidates must be affiliated with a specialization. The Social Work and Social Policy and Information, Library and Archival Studies specializations are continuations of SAM’s two existing PhD programmes, which will be incorporated under the umbrella of the new PhD in Social Sciences.

The PhD in Social Sciences is a full-time, 180 ECTS credit programme. Upon completion and passing of the programme, the candidate will be awarded the degree PhD in Social Sciences. The candidate’s specialization will be named on the transcript and diploma.

Admission requirements

To be admitted to the PhD programme, applicants must have completed a master's degree (120 ECTS credits) or an equivalent education in social sciences, the humanities, and/or fields relevant to the specializations in the PhD programme.
Admission is based on a total assessment of the application, including the relevance and quality of the project description and on funding.  There are no set deadlines for application to the PhD programme in Social Sciences. Applications are accepted on an open-ended basis.

Target group

The target group for the PhD in Social Sciences consists of those who wish to achieve research competence in Social Sciences – within one of the specializations - in order to be qualified for research and teaching positions and other public and private sector positions that place high demands on professional competence.  

  • JMF: Journalism and Media Studies

    The specialization in Journalism and Media Studies will have a particular but not exclusive orientation towards theories and methodologies related to journalism and media production, and the developments in the practices, professions, and structural frameworks of journalism, media, and communication. 

  • PIBA: Information, Library and Archival Studies

    The specialization in Information, Library and Archival Studies prepares candidates to meet the needs in research, teaching and further professional development in the fields of Library and Information Science and Archival Science. The interdisciplinary specialization focuses on understanding relations between information, knowledge or culture, their production/producers and their use/users. 

  • SASP: Social Work and Social Policy

    The specialization in Social Work and Social Policy qualifies candidates for research, teaching, development, and other work in the fields of social work and social policy. The specialization is characterised by methodological and theoretical pluralism, maintaining in addition a focus on research and professional ethics and on international and comparative perspectives. This applies both to research into relations between social workers and the citizens they serve, and to the implementation of social policy programmes 

  • BIG: Business Administration, Innovation and Governance

    The specialization in Business Administration, Innovation and Governance qualifies candidates for research, teaching, and highly qualified public and private sector work in the fields of professions and management; organisation and management in the public sector; economics and finance; and digital innovation and strategic competence in organisations. The specialization will be interdisciplinary, attracting candidates with backgrounds in economics, business, finance, public administration, political science, and other social science disciplines.

Program structure and requirements

The PhD programme consists of an educational (coursework) component (30 ECTS credits) and a research component comprising the doctoral thesis (150 ECTS credits). The programme is intended to be completed within an effective researcher training period of three years, alternatively four years including mandatory duties (pliktarbeid).

Research component (doctoral thesis)

The doctoral thesis is the main component of the PhD degree, comprising 150 ECTS credits. The doctoral thesis consists of independent research work carried out in active cooperation with a supervisor (or supervisors) and other researchers. 

Training component

The training component is intended to underpin the PhD candidate's research. The training component comprises a mixture of obligatory and common courses/ requirements (required for all candidates to the programme); obligatory but not common components (specialization-specific requirements; methods requirements); and an elective component. 

The obligatory and common requirements at the programme level total 10 ECTS credits. Candidates must take these courses at OsloMet, unless an exemption is granted from the Faculty’s Research Education Board. 

The educational component also comprises a specialization-specific requirement amounting to 5-10 ECTS credits. The goal of the obligatory course at the specialization level is to provide candidates with an understanding of the foundational theories, concepts, and approaches within the field(s) of study, including how these relate to methodological choices. 

Methods training amounting to 10 ECTS credits is also obligatory. Doctoral candidates are free to choose which courses are relevant to their project. Methods courses can be taken at OsloMet or at other universities in Norway and abroad, subject to approval from The Faculty of Social Sciences Research Education Board. In the case of candidates in the PIBA specialization, 5 of the methods credits may be waived if deemed appropriate due to the topic of the doctoral thesis.

The final 5 ECTS credits will be used on an elective course of the candidate’s choosing, in consultation with her/his supervisor(s). Elective courses can be taken at OsloMet or at other universities in Norway and abroad, subject to approval from The Faculty of Social Sciences Research Education Board.

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