Do you have a passion to not only conduct research and publish medical innovations but pursue scientific work as well? Then a Doctorate in Medical Sciences is the program for you!
The full-time, English-language doctoral/PhD program in Medical Sciences is 180 ECTS credits. The program focuses on scientific work and completing a dissertation. You also learn transferable skills, such as presentation skills and writing scientific studies and papers.
The program concludes with a "defensio" (oral defense) of your dissertation in which you present your research study and findings in a public setting and open the topic up for discussion. Graduates of the Doctorate Degree program in Medical Sciences are conferred with either the title Dr. scient. med. or PhD.
Both types of degrees must fulfill the following criteria:
The program options differ with regard to the nature of the required scientific work:
The Dr. scient. med. degree is conferred for clinical or epidemiologic research.
The PhD degree involves conducting basic research or translational (laboratory) research.
Dr.scient.med. / PhD
English (Level C1)
As part of the doctoral degree program, students are required to successfully complete a total of 180 ECTS credits as follows:
A doctorate degree is a prerequisite to pursuing an academic career at universities, or at universities of applied sciences, at centers of excellence, or at other non-academic research institutions, particularly to work toward earning a PostDoc/Habilitation degree, and/or apply for a professorship position.
The successful completion of a PhD degree is considered advantageous in support of pursuing a career in industry, particularly senior research and development positions at pharmaceutical companies and in the biotech industry.
To enroll in the doctorate degree program in Medical Sciences, please provide the following:
Submit the application for admission to the degree program online via MyAdmission, opens an external URL in a new window. You will also need a student applicant account. Click here for detailed information about enrollment.
You can find imporant information, instructions, announcements, and notifications on the doctorate "bulletin board" in Moodle. Once you have successfully enrolled, you can log in to Moodle using your student ID number and password. The Faculty of Medicine Medical Sciences blackboard, opens an external URL in a new window contains important information you will need throughout your studies at the Faculty of Medicine.
Your Thesis Advisory Committee (TAC) is required to supervise your dissertation and monitor your progress in an academic, scientific, and scholarly capacity from the very start.
Your three-person TAC team must include:
Once a year, the candidate will be required to hold a presentation for the Thesis Advisory Committee regarding progress in the dissertation, which will be documented in a TAC protocol. The form is available in Moodle. Once the form is completely filled out and signed, the student is required to upload the form in Moodle as part of the Dissertation Colloquium, Interim Report I & II courses.
As part of the dissertation colloquium at the start of your studies, you will be required to present a comprehensive dissertation concept. The concept must address the following points:
As soon as you have selected your team of supervisors, please inform the JKU's Office of Examinations and Recognition Services regarding your first and second supervisor. Once you have successfully completed the dissertation colloquium (no later than by the end of the third semester), you will need to finalize a dissertation agreement and submit that agreement to the Office of Examinations and Recogntion Services. The required forms are available here ("Doktorat neu").
Cardea: The Electronic Attendance Registry
Courses that include examinations and/or mandatory attendance require advance registration. Use the Faculty of Medicine's electronic attendance system (Cardea, opens an external URL in a new window) for this purpose (a QR code, or via your mobile phone using the MyJKU app, or by using your student ID card). See the blackboard at the Faculty of Medicine - Medical Sciences, opens an external URL in a new window for detailed information.
Only this method of taking attendance will be accepted in order to receive a passing course grade.
When writing your dissertation, please take the following aspects into account (see: dissertation guidelines / minimum dissertation requirements, opens an external URL in a new window to learn more):
Cumulative dissertations are permitted upon request (see Moodle to access the application form). Cumulative dissertations require a minimum of three original papers in first authorship or co-authorship (see the curriculum for details). Please include the following (see the "dissertation guidelines/minimum requirements for a dissertation, opens an external URL in a new window" to learn more):
Once you have successfully completed your dissertation and all of the required courses, submit your dissertation to the Office of Examinations and Recognitions Services at the JKU to be graded. Prior to submitting the dissertation, we recommend having the paper informally reviewed by the Doctoral School's dissertation committee. To do so, send the paper to: doctoralschool_medicalsciences(at)jku.at.
Your dissertation must be reviewed by two post-doctoral faculty members who are not a member of the Thesis Advisory Committee (TAC); they may not be co-authors of publications for the dissertation. The Vice-Rector for Academic Affairs will receive the reviews. You and/or your team of dissertation supervisors can provide the Vice-Rector for Academic Affairs with a list of eligible and qualified (and in general) external reviewers.
The dissertation will be reviewed and evaluated as part of a defensio by a three-member examination board:
Your third Thesis Advisory Committee (TAC) member may not be a member of the Examination Board.
The defensio is an oral defense of your dissertation as well as an opportunity to examine your ability to independently address scientific issues as part of your dissertation subject. The defensio begins with a 30-45 minute presentation by the candidate in regard to content and the dissertation's key findings. The presentation will be followed by a discussion of the topics covered during the presentation and, if necessary, other aspects as covered by the dissertation. The defensio may not exceed 120 minutes. All of the examination board members are required to be present.
The examination board will grade the dissertation immediately after the defensio is completed. The examination board will render its decision based on:
Please note that in accordance with Study Law, the dissertation's ECTS credits (140) can only be awarded after submission.
If you have any questions about the program, or need help registering to enroll, please contact the JKU's Office of Student Information & Advising Services (SIBS). Our team at the JKU's Office of Student Information & Advising Services (SIBS), or your contact person for doctoral studies (doktorat_MED(at)jku.at), will be happy to help you!