Regarding shadow doctoral students

Last changed: 16 December 2022

At some SLU departments, the practice has been to employ the main candidate as an assistant, etc. after the selection process has been completed but before the application to the Doctoral Education Committee (FUN) for admission. During the employment, the candidate can participate in courses, prepare the project and write on the ISP. There may be several thoughtful motives for this. However, the legal assessment is different.

The Council for doctoral education at SLU (FUR) decided at its meeting of 20 June on the following guidance to heads of department:

  1. Anyone who, on application for admission to postgraduate education, already has an SLU employment, may, in consultation with the head of the employment and in the initiative of the principal supervisor, participate in discussions on the research project to be included in the dissertation work.
  2. Applicants who do not have an SLU employment under paragraph 1 above can not be employed for the primary purpose of preparing for postgraduate studies before the Faculty Board has decided to take admission.
  3. The main supervisor is responsible for compiling the preliminary ISP to be attached to the application from the faculty to the faculty board regarding admission of the main candidate. A preliminary ISP's main purpose is to show that the research project that will form the basis for the planned dissertation work is reasonably defined and defined. Other parts of the education planning may be complete to be completed after admission together with the doctoral student.


Although the guidance does not solve all problems with any shadow doctoral students, it is FUN's view that it should be followed, which means that graduate students recruited should be admitted before they are hired. The guide applies immediately.