Faculty of Law

PhD programme in Law

The Faculty of Law offers an ambitious doctoral education programme, leading to a PhD degree. On this page you can find information on admission, courses, rules and regulations.

Gamle lovbøker i hylle
Magnus Halsnes

Main content

For a period of three or four years, PhD candidates shall write a thesis and conduct an obligatory training component. The obligatory training component has a scope of 30 credits corresponding to one semester of full-time study. 

Content and courses

The training component consists of an obligatory part (20 credits) and an open part (10 credits). 

The obligatory part consists of seven components:

  • Introduction to legal science and thesis writing (3 credits)
  • Sources of law and the methodological pluralism of legal science (3 credits)
  • Introduction to legal theory (3 credits)
  • Empirical perspectives in legal science (3 credits)
  • Text quality (3 credits)
  • Dissemination of legal research (2 credits)
  • Role understanding and project development (3 credits)

In the open part the candidate shall choose external subjects and participation in seminars and/or conferences equivalent to 10 credits. Nordic elective courses can be found via the web portal JurForskNordic.

Read the full description of the PhD programme here.



In order to become eligible for admission and enrol as a PhD candidate, you must have secured funding that covers both living costs and the costs relating to the research project for the entire doctoral training period. This could be an university fellowship of three or four years, a three-year scholarship from the Research Council of Norway or another external funding source.

At the Faculty of Law most PhD candidates hold positions as PhD fellows ("stipendiat") during their doctoral training period. When a position is available it will be advertised on our website www.uib.no/jur. To submit an application to an advertised position you must provide all the required information via the website JobbNorge (there will be a link in the advert).

Please note that admission is only possible after you have documented sufficient funding to cover the costs relating to the doctoral training period, or have been appointed to a PhD fellowship.


In order to be admitted and enrolled as a PhD candidate at the University of Bergen you must meet the following requirements and have:

  • a Master's degree or an equivalent university or college university degree. Applicants educated abroad must enclose certified translation into English or Scandinavian if the original diploma and transcripts are not in any of these languages. The applicant must also enclose an approval from NOKUT. Please see www.nokut.no for information regarding general approval of education. 
  • sufficient funding for living costs and the research project
  • a project description 
  • a plan for the training component: PhD courses and presentations at conferences etc.
  • a research field for the PhD studies in which UiB professors have research interests and qualifications for supervision  

Admission is dependent on you being selected on the basis of your merits as a student, your work experience, publications and project description. Further information, including Handbook for doctoral education (PhD) at UIB and regulations, can be found on the University of Bergen's PhD portal.   

If you have funding/employment and only wish to apply for admission, send your application to: Det juridiske fakultet v/Forskningsutvalget, Postboks 7806, 5020 Bergen, Norway.


Overview of formal requirements and application form can be found here

Information for new PhD candidates

Just started - what now? 

The first thing you need to do after starting your PhD education is to contact your supervisor. Together you will construct a plan for the project and your supervisor will help you initiate your writing process. 

Key people

  • Ragna Aarli: Vice Dean of Research, leader of the University Research Committee and HR-manager for PhD candidates employed at the Faculty of Law. 
  • Jørn Jacobsen: Leader of the Faculty's PhD programme.
  • Karoline Aksnes: Adviser, PhD Coordinator for all candidates enrolled in the PhD programme.
  • hrjur@uib.no: HR-adviser responsible for PhD candidates employed at the Faculty of Law.

Half-year registration og progress report

  • Half-year registration: It is mandatory to log into Studentweb and complete a half-year registration (deadline dates for registration are 1 September and 1 February). This is similar to an ordinary semester registration, except for the semester fee.  
  • Progress report: All PhD candidates must deliver an annual progress report. The main supervisor must do the same. The progress report are delivered through an electronic questionnaire sent to all PhD candidates by email. The reports will be read by the Dean of Research, the leader of the PhD programme and the PhD Coordinator, and will be treated with confidentiality. The progress report may be used as background material in relation to an appraisal interview. 

Academic supervision

All PhD candidates will be assigned at least one supervisor. The main supervisor shall be employed at the Faculty of Law and must have a doctoral degree. The academic supervisor(s) is appointed by the Research Committee (FU) or by the chair of the Research Committee by authorisation of FU as soon as possible after admission. The academic supervision will normally amount to a total of 80 hours per year. Questions relating to supervisor(s) may be directed at the Dean of Research. 

PhD on Track

PhD on Track is a resource for PhD students who are starting their research career and want to learn more about information and literature for research purposes, and how to publish research.