General Study Plan for Third-Cycle Studies in Business Administration

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1 Date of ratification Dnr FAK 2012/628 Faculty Board School of Business and Economics Third-cycle studies at Linnaeus University are regulated in the Higher Education Act and the Higher Education Ordinance as well as in local rules for third-cycle studies, established at the university. In the university s working, decision-making and delegation regulations it is specified in which institution decisions are made. General Study Plan for Third-Cycle Studies in Business Administration General study plan for third-cycle studies in Business Administration is established by the Faculty Board for Economy and Design and will take effect from , revised by the Faculty Board of School of Business and Economics Scope of Education Doctoral Degree The doctoral degree usually requires four-years fulltime studies and is attained upon completing 240 credits of which 105 credits consist of courses and the remanding 135 credits of an approved scientific thesis (doctoral thesis). Licentiate Degree The licentiate degree usually requires two-years fulltime studies and is attained upon completing at least 120 credits of which 50 credits consist of courses and the remanding 70 credits of an approved scientific essay (licentiate essay). Objectives of Education Doctoral Degree For a doctoral degree, the following objectives must be fulfilled: Higher Education Ordinance, appendix 2 System of Qualifications Knowledge and Understanding For a doctoral degree, the doctoral student should Demonstrate a broad knowledge within, and a systematic understanding of, the research field as well as deep and current specialist-knowledge within a limited part of the research field, and Demonstrate familiarity with scientific methodology in general and with the methods of the specific research field in particular. 1

2 Skills and Abilities For a doctoral degree, the doctoral student should demonstrate an ability for scientific analysis and synthesis as well as for independent critical examination and assessment of new and complex phenomena, issues and situations, demonstrate the ability to critically, independently, creatively and with scientific meticulousness identify and formulate questions as well as plan and with adequate methods carry out research and other qualified assignments within given timeframes as well as examine and evaluate such work, with a thesis and through independent research, demonstrate the ability to significantly contribute to knowledge development, demonstrate the ability to, both verbally and in writing, and in both national and international contexts, present and discuss research and research results in dialogue with the scientific community and the community in general, demonstrate the ability to identify the need for further knowledge, and demonstrate prerequisites, both within research and education and in other qualified professional contexts, to contribute to the development of society as well as support the learning of others. Judgement and Approach For a doctoral degree, doctoral students should demonstrate intellectual independency and scientific probity as well as the ability to make research-ethical assessments, and demonstrate deeper insight into scientific possibilities and limitations, their role in society as well as people s responsibility for how this knowledge is used. Licentiate Degree For a licentiate degree, the following objectives must be fulfilled: Higher Education Ordinance, appendix 2 System of Qualifications Knowledge and Understanding For a licentiate degree, the doctoral student should demonstrate knowledge and understanding within the research field, including current specialist-knowledge with a limited part of this as well as deeper knowledge in scientific methodology in general and the specific methods of the research field in particular. Skills and Abilities For a licentiate degree, the doctoral student should demonstrate the ability to critically, independently, creatively and with scientific meticulousness identify and formulate questions as well as plan and with adequate methods carry out a limited research paper and other qualified assignments within given timeframes and, through this, contribute to the development of knowledge as well as evaluate this work, demonstrate the ability to, both verbally and in writing, and in both national and international contexts, clearly present and discuss research and research results in dialogue with the scientific community and the community in general, and 2

3 demonstrate the knowledge that is needed to independently partake in research and development work and to independently work in other qualified operations. Judgement and Approach For a licentiate degree, the doctoral student should demonstrate the ability to make research-ethical assessments in their own research, demonstrate an insight into the possibilities and limitations of science, its role in society and people s responsibility for how it is used, and demonstrate the ability to identify their need for further knowledge and take responsibility for their own knowledge development. Entry Requirements Higher Education Ordinance 7 chap. 35 In order to be accepted to third-cycle studies, applicants must, 1. have general entry requirements and specific entry requirements assigned by the university, and 2. be thought to have the ability that is needed to acquire such education. General Entry Requirements Higher Education Ordinance 7 chap. 39 General entry requirements for third-cycle studies concern those who have 1. completed a degree on advanced level, 2. completed course requirements of at least 240 credits, whereof at least 60 credits are on advanced level, or 3. in some other way inside or outside the country, essentially acquired equivalent knowledge. The university may, for an individual applicant, grant exemptions from the general requirements, if there are special reasons. Transitional (2006:1053) Provisions Those who, before 1 July 2007, meet the basic requirements for admission to third-cycle studies will also be considered eligible for admission to third-cycle studies, but only until the end of June The transitional provisions (regulations 2006:1053 above) mean that those who have undergone general higher education of at least 120 credits in accordance with earlier point systems, or who have, in some other way inside or outside the country, essentially acquired equivalent knowledge are eligible for acceptance to third-cycle studies. Specific Entry Requirements 3

4 Higher Education Ordinance 7 chap. 40 The requirements for specific entry requirements must be totally essential if the student is to benefit from the education. Requirements relate to 1. knowledge from higher education or equivalent education 2. specific work experience, and 3. necessary language knowledge or other conditions that the education commands. Specific Entry Requirements for the Subject of Business Administration Specific entry requirements for third-cycle studies in Business Administration are as follows: at least 90 credits in the subject of Business Administration or in subjects that are connected to third-cycle studies in Business Administration or equivalent knowledge acquired in some other order, inside or outside of the country at least 15 credits in second-cycle studies or third-cycle studies in the subject of Business Administration or in subjects that are connected to third-cycle studies in Business Administration, including the writing of an independent work carried out on second-cycle or third-cycle level. good knowledge of the English language Application Applications to third-cycle studies are regulated in Local admission regulations and Local rules for third-cycle studies. In order to apply for the third-cycle studies, the correct application form should be used. The application form for third-cycle studies is available on the university webpage. Along with the application form, students should include documents that confirm their general and specific entry requirements as well as other required documents. Assessment and Selection Criteria Higher Education Ordinance 7 chap. 41 Selection of applicants who fulfil requirements according to HF 7 chap. 35 and 36 (in relation to entry requirements and requirements for funding) shall be made with consideration for their ability to benefit from the education. The mere fact that an applicant may credit earlier education or professional duties for education should not, during selection, give the applicant priority over other applicants. 4

5 Within Business Administration, assessment of abilities to benefit from the education is primarily based on: i) scientific skills documented in scientific work, especially the quality of theses on advanced level and other scientific work, ii) course grades, especially on advanced level, iii) the impression that is made from the applicant s prerequisites, and iv) assessments from interviews. The application is further strengthened through the relevance and originality of the thesis plan, and through feasibility within the given timeframe, that is equivalent to four-years full-time education for a doctoral degree and equivalent to two years fulltime education for a licentiate degree. Admission Admission is regulated in Linnaeus University s local admission regulations and Local rules for third-cycle studies. Higher Education Ordinance 7 chap. 36 The university may only admit applicants who are employed as doctoral students, or granted a stipend, to third-cycle studies. The university may, however, admit applicants who have some other form of student finance, if the university believes that the funding can be secured throughout the entire education and that the applicant can devote so much time to the education that it can be completed in four years, when it comes to the licentiate degree, or licentiate degree of fine arts, and eight years, when it comes to degree of doctor, or degree of doctor of fine arts. The forms of funding that are available for third-cycle studies at Linnaeus University are employment as a doctoral student (internally or externally funded), external funding through employment with another employer, reserved funds for lecturers, self-funding and scholarship funding. If an applicant wishes to be admitted through other means of funding than internally funded doctoral employment, the sustainability of the financing plan should be tested. Education allowance does not apply to Linnaeus University. Requirements for funding are provided in more detail in the Local Rules for Third- Cycle Studies. In relation to institutional resources that are necessary for admission, the prefect must be able to prove that there is funding for four-years full-time studies, insurance, supervisors and a workplace. Chief supervisor, assistant supervisor as well as examiner are appointed in conjunction with admission. 5

6 Organisation of Third-Cycle Studies Organisation of third-cycle studies is regulated in Local rules for third-cycle studies and in the university s organisational decisions. Supervisor Higher Education Ordinance 6 chap. 28 Every doctoral student should be appointed at least two supervisors. One of them should be appointed as chief supervisor. The doctoral student is entitled to supervision during the education as long as the rector, with support of 30, does not decide otherwise. The doctoral student has the right to request a change of supervisor. Requirements Every doctoral student should be appointed a chief supervisor and at least one assistant supervisor. The supervisors should be at the very least a competent associate professor and be employed by Linnaeus University (unless special reasons are given) and have undergone supervisor education or equivalent. Gender balance between supervisors must exist to all possible extents. In the subject of Business Administration, diversity is generally sought after. The chief supervisor and the examiner may not be the same person. The assistant supervisor and examiner may be the same person, but only if special circumstances exist. In the subject of Business Administration, this means in particular that the assistant supervisor and examiner may be the same person prior to the Research Proposal. Duties Supervisors main duties are to help doctoral students become independent researchers with a scientific attitude, and to support them in their education so that the objectives of the degree are accomplished. The chief supervisor and assistant supervisor plan the supervision of the doctoral student s work. Planning should be specified in the individual study guide, likewise the division of responsibility and work between the chief supervisor, assistant supervisor and examiner. The chief supervisor is responsible for making sure that the individual study guide is established and revised. Supervisors should help with the choosing of the thesis subject and, with the doctoral student, structure this in a way that makes completion within given timeframes possible. It is also the supervisors duty to examine the manuscript and other material, to recommend relevant literature as well as to confer with the examiner and the doctoral student about which courses should be included in the education. Supervisors must also prepare the doctoral student for the public defence of the thesis. Examiner Higher Education Ordinance 6 chap. 32 Examinations included in the third-cycle studies should be assessed in accordance with the grading system that the university provides. The grade should be decided upon by a 6

7 teacher (examiner) who has been especially appointed by the university. (SFS 2010:1064) Requirements Every doctoral student should be appointed an examiner upon admission. The examiner should be at the very least a competent associate professor and be employed by Linnaeus University (unless special reasons are given). The chief supervisor and the examiner may not be the same person. The assistant supervisor and examiner may be the same person, but only if special circumstances exist. Duties The examiner decides, upon consultation with the chief supervisor and the doctoral student, which courses should be included in the education and to which degree, and has overall responsibility in making sure that course grades are reported in the Ladok system. The examiner decides on accreditation of earlier education or activities such as courses, or parts of courses, in consultation with the supervisor. The examiner is responsible for making sure that the examination and assessment of the thesis script is carried out before notice of the disputation is given, and verifies when all presentations are completed so that degree certificates for licentiate and doctoral degrees can be issued. Department and Prefect Normally, doctoral students have their main place of work located at an department. As the department s team leader, the prefect has overall financial responsibility in addition to responsibility for on-going work regarding working environment, both physical and psychosocial. Structure and Content of the Education Individual Study Plan Higher Education Ordinance 6 chap. 29 An individual study plan must be established for every doctoral student. The plan should contain the university s and the doctoral student s undertaking and a schedule for the doctoral student s education. The plan should be decided upon consultation with the doctoral student and his or her supervisor. The individual study plan should be regularly monitored, and upon consultation with the doctoral student and his or her supervisor, changed by the university to the extent needed. The education period may only be extended if there are special reasons for doing so. Such grounds may be leave due to illness, leave for military service within the total defence or for commission of trust within trade unions and student organisations or parental leave. The individual plan is a work plan for a course of studies, thesis work and supervision up to the point of graduation. The plan is drawn up by the supervisor and the doctoral student in consultation with the examiner and should be monitored at least once every year. The progress of the education should be clearly specified in follow-ups. 7

8 The main supervisor is responsible for making sure that both follow-ups and study plans are carried out. If the parties who establish and revise the individual study plan are not in agreement about the content, description of distribution of responsibility and work, undertakings and/or follow-ups, and one party cannot agree upon signing the individual study plan, the matter must be dealt with in accordance with Linnaeus University s decision making and delegation regulations. Departmental Duties Higher Education Ordinance 5 chap. 2 Those who are employed as doctoral students should first and foremost devote themselves to their own education. However, an employee can to some extent work with education, research, artistic development work and administration. Such work should not, prior to the completion of a doctoral degree or doctor of fine arts degree, exceed more than 20 percent of the total working time. The work referred to is called departmental duties. Doctoral students whose employment comprises 50% cannot include of departmental duties. Departmental duties are funded by the department for which the work is being carried out, and are normally regulated financially within the doctoral student's employment. Practically, this means that the doctoral student s third-cycle education time is increased by the number of hours spent teaching. Courses Teaching is given in the form of individual supervision, courses and seminars. Students should, throughout the entire education, actively participate in research seminars in the subject/environment. The elective courses to be included in the degree are determined by the examiner in consultation with the doctoral student and supervisor. External courses provided by other departments or seats of learning, which are not included in the study plan, can be credited upon review of each case. Decisions concerning accreditation should be made based on foundations such as Ladok selection, course certificates and other information about the content of the course. Accreditation is documented in the individual study plan and in Ladok. Doctoral Degree Obligatory courses Theory of Science 7.5 credits Methodology 30 credits (of which at least 7.5 credits qualitative and at least 7.5 quantitative features) Active participation in seminars 7.5 credits Elective courses Within or outside the subject elective courses (of which a maximum of 15 credits individual courses) 60 credits 8

9 Licentiate Degree Obligatory courses Theory of Science 7.5 credits Methodology 22.5 credits (of which at least 7.5 credits qualitative and 7.5 credits quantitative features) Elective courses Within or outside the subject elective courses (of which a maximum of 7.5 credits individual courses) 20 credits Course Syllabi The handling of course syllabi for third-cycle studies is specified in the Local rules for third-cycle studies. Examination of Courses Every course is examined through oral or written tests, through oral presentation for the research seminar or through reports that are submitted for the seminar. The course examiner decides choice of examination form. Every such educational measurement is assessed and evaluated by the course examiner with the grades Pass or Fail. Scientific Seminar The aim of participation in the scientific seminar is for students to train their ability to partake in scientific debates within the subject as well as their ability to discuss their work in a scientific forum. Doctoral Thesis The thesis is comprised of 135 credits. For a doctoral degree, doctoral students should write a scientific thesis (thesis). The thesis should be based on an independent research work and be of relevance to research within the chosen subject. The requirement for independence does not mean that the thesis can be part of a larger research-projects. The subject should be defined and delineated as early as possible during third-cycle studies. The thesis can either be designed as a coherent scientific work, a monograph thesis or as a compilation thesis. A monograph thesis is normally coherent, single-authored text, divided into chapters that deal with the same themes. It is recommended that the doctoral student who so desires, from the beginning, or at least in the early stages of the thesis, concentrates on writing a monograph thesis. The thesis should not exceed 300 printed pages. A compilation thesis should normally contain the equivalent of three to five essays as well as a compilation section (kappa). The essays should have a quality that is considered adequate for publication in a peer-reviewed journal. One of them should be accepted for publication in a peer reviewed journal or an anthology of high quality. The compilation section can, as well as a summary of the thesis, include a discussion of the work s theoretical basis and connection to previous research. The relationship between 9

10 the essays should also be discussed in the compilation section. In cases where essays have been co-written, the individual authors contributions should be specified in the preface. A thesis that has been co-written by two or more individuals can be approved as a doctoral thesis provided that the authors' individual inputs can be distinguished. A thesis can be written in Swedish or English. If the thesis is written in Swedish, it should contain a summary written in English. If the thesis is written in English, it should contain a summary written in Swedish. Quality Assurance of the Thesis Preliminary subject for the thesis should be chosen in consultation with the supervisor as early as acceptance to the third-cycle programme. The subject should then be defined and delineated as early as possible during third-cycle studies. The following public seminars are carried out within the framework for third-cycle studies: Research Proposal (RP) seminar should be proposed by the end of term 2. The purpose is to discuss the feasibility of the project that the student suggested, in order to give the go-ahead as well as give advice for further work. RP should include: a description of the current, scientific problem along with a theoretically based motivation of interests and a positioning of the subject in regard to various possible theoretical approaches a definition of the research project s aim as well as its theoretical and practical relevance a discussion of possible methods and a motivation of the methodological approach the doctoral student intends to use a schedule. There should be three opponents present at the seminar, of which one should have doctoral skills, one should have at least a doctoral degree and the third should be a doctoral student. The Chairman should be the doctoral student's chief supervisor. Immediately after the seminar has been carried out, the examiner decides, in consultation with the chief supervisor and the opponents who have a doctoral degree, whether or not the doctoral student's RP can be approved. When the RP has been approved, the doctoral student can be credited with 30 credits of the planned thesis. Midway seminar is held when the doctoral student has completed about half of the required work for a finished thesis that is normally during term 6. The order of the seminar is the same as the RP seminar. When the midway seminar report is approved, the doctoral student can be credited with an additional 37.5 credits of the planned thesis. Final seminar is carried out when the thesis is deemed almost complete, normally during term 9. It is carried out in order to give the doctoral student final recommendations for the completion of the thesis. One of the three opponents present at the final seminar should come from outside of the School of Business and Economics. Otherwise, the same conditions apply as in the three previous seminars. When the final seminar has been approved, the doctoral student can be credited with 37.5 credits of the planned thesis. 10

11 Timekeeping is what is normally expected of a doctoral student with an 80% degree of activity in third-cycle studies. Doctoral students with other levels of activity are expected to follow time indications suitable to current levels of activity. In addition to the obligatory seminars, the supervisor, examiner and doctoral student should be in agreement regarding other seminars. Licentiate Thesis The thesis is comprised of 70 credits. For a licentiate degree, doctoral students should write a scientific thesis (licentiate thesis). The thesis should be based on an independent research work and be of good scientific quality. The requirement for independence does not mean that the thesis can be part of a larger research-projects The thesis can either be designed as a coherent scientific work, a monograph thesis or as a compilation thesis. A monograph thesis is normally coherent, single-authored text, divided into chapters that deal with the same themes. It is recommended that the doctoral student who so desires, from the beginning, or at least in the early stages of the thesis, concentrates on writing a monograph thesis. The thesis should not exceed 150 printed pages. A compilation thesis should normally contain 2-3 essays as well as a compilation section (kappa). The essays should have a quality that is considered adequate for publication in a peer-reviewed journal. A thesis can be written in Swedish or English. If the thesis is written in Swedish, it should contain a summary written in English. If the thesis is written in English, it should contain a summary written in Swedish. Quality Assurance of the Licentiate Thesis Preliminary subject for the thesis should be chosen in consultation with the supervisor as early as acceptance to the third-cycle programme. The subject should then be defined and delineated as early as possible during third-cycle studies. The following public seminars are carried out within the framework for third-cycle studies: Research Proposal (RP) seminar and final seminar are carried out according to the rules for seminars for third-cycle studies. In addition to the obligatory seminars, the supervisor, examiner and doctoral student should be in agreement regarding other seminars. Examination of Doctoral Thesis The doctoral thesis should be defended at a public seminar. Two months before the disputation, at the latest, an application should be sent in to the decision-making body. Applications are made via the application form, Application for Disputation. See Local rules for third-cycle studies to see what the application should contain. The publication of the thesis should be made at least three weeks before the disputation. Publication is carried out at university library and electronically in the 11

12 university's publication database DiVA. The thesis may be a monograph or a compilation thesis. There should be at least 100 copies of the publication made. The thesis may not be amended or supplemented after the disputation. Linnaeus University Press provides the university's regulations concerning the design of theses. The opponent should, at the very least, be a professor (unless special reasons are given), and come from another seat of learning. The Board should consist of three or five members. The examination committee must include at least one member who does not work at Linnaeus University. The examining committee should include no more than one member who works at the same subject/environment as the doctoral student. All members of the examination committee should be at least professors or have equivalent qualifications. The supervisor of the doctoral student may not be a part of the examination committee. Both sexes should be represented in the examination committee. The subject of Business Administration strives for diversity in general. The provisions in relation to participation in the grading of the doctoral thesis also apply when an alternate member of the group replaces an existing member. Deviation from the above (as well as the proficiency of the docent) should be motivated during notification of the disputation. The doctoral thesis will be assessed using the grades of fail or pass. The grading will take into consideration the content and defence of the thesis. For a doctoral degree, students must receive a grade of pass in the courses included in the education as well as a grade of pass on the doctoral thesis. When all requirements for the doctoral degree are fulfilled, the examiner will document the results in the Ladok system. The student is responsible for applying for the degree. Examination of Licentiate Thesis The licentiate thesis should be defended in a public seminar. Two months before the licentiate seminar, at the latest, an application should be sent in to the decision-making body. Applications are made via the application form, Application for Licentiate Seminar. See Local rules for third-cycle studies to see what the application should contain. The publication of the thesis should be made at least three weeks before the licentiate seminar. Publication is carried out electronically in the university's publication database DiVA. The thesis may not be amended or supplemented after the licentiate seminar. The departments decide which graphical format the licentiate thesis should have. There are two alternatives for examination and grading of licentiate theses. In the subject Business Administration, alternative 1 is preferably applied. Alternative 1 Opponent, grading committee and chairperson are elected for the licentiate seminar. The licentiate thesis is graded by the grading committee. Alternative 2 Opponent and chairperson for the licentiate seminar are elected. The licentiate thesis is graded by the doctoral student s examiner with the exception of cases where the 12

13 examiner is the doctoral student s assistant supervisor. In this case, another grader must be elected. The opponent should, at the very least, be a professor (unless special reasons are given), and come from another seat of learning. The Board should consist of three or five members. The examination committee must include at least one member who does not work at Linnaeus University. The examining committee should include no more than one member who works at the same subject/environment as the doctoral student. All members of the examination committee should be at least professors or have equivalent qualifications. The supervisor of the doctoral student may not be a part of the examination committee. Both sexes should be represented in the examination committee. The subject of Business Administration strives for diversity in general. The provisions in relation to participation in the grading of the doctoral thesis also apply when an alternate member of the group replaces an existing member. Deviation from the above (as well as the proficiency of the docent) should be motivated during notification of the licentiate seminar. The licentiate thesis will be assessed using the grades of fail or pass. The grading will take into consideration the content and defence of the thesis. For a licentiate degree, students must receive a grade of pass in the courses included in the education as well as a grade of pass on the doctoral thesis. When all requirements for the doctoral degree are fulfilled, the examiner will document the results in the Ladok system. The student is responsible for applying for the degree. Prefixes to Degree Titles For doctoral degrees within the subject of Business Administration, the prefix economics or philosophy will be used. Interim Rules in Relation to Previous General Syllabi Doctoral students admitted on the basis of previous general syllabi can still take their degrees in accordance with these documents provided that the current version of the Higher Education Ordinance is followed. Doctoral students admitted on the basis of older versions of third-cycle syllabi in the subject of Business Administration, directive number 571/ as well as directive number 770/ can change to the general syllabus currently in force. 13

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