Monday January 17, 2022

Helsinki varsity changes doc student title to doc researcher

Published : 15 Dec 2021, 22:39

  DF Report

Photo: University of Helsinki by Juuli Kalavainen.

The University of Helsinki will use the title ‘doctoral researcher’ in official contexts to refer to anyone pursuing a postgraduate degree.

The Board of the university has taken the decision to change the title of doctoral student to doctoral researcher, said a press release of the university on Wednesday.

While the change has been recorded in the Regulations of the University, it does not affect related eligibility requirements or job descriptions.

The new title will be introduced for those who start their employment at the University to complete a doctoral degree as of 1 January 2022.

Titles will not be changed in currently valid employment contracts, but doctoral researchers can independently switch to using the new title in relevant contexts as of the beginning of 2022.

In the case of doctoral researchers employed by the University, the title change will be implemented in the SAP HR system and their personal profiles.

Those completing a doctoral degree with other funding can also switch to using the title of doctoral researcher.

In Finnish, the title of ‘tohtorikoulutettava’ is replaced with ‘väitöskirjatutkija’. In Swedish, the title remains unchanged: ‘doktorand’.

“We wish to express our appreciation of this large group of researchers at the University of Helsinki, and to emphasise through this title change that researchers are professionals at all stages of their careers. The title of doctoral researcher refers to both the content of their work and their career stage. The change is aimed at promoting the researcher identities and careers of anyone pursuing a doctoral degree. People completing a postgraduate degree have themselves wanted this change for a long time,” Vice-Rector of the University of Helsinki Paula Eerola said.

A total of roughly 4,700 people are pursuing a doctoral degree at the University of Helsinki, of whom about 1,350 are employed by the University. Each year, the University awards around 500 doctoral degrees.