Employee pages for the Faculty of Social Sciences

Instructions for evaluation of fellowship applications

The Faculty of Social Sciences has prepared these instructions for evaluations for fellowship applicants.

In addition to these guidelines, the assessment committee must base their work on the following documents:

  • the text in the job advertisement
  • the job description, if this exists

    Basic qualifications

    In order to be accepted onto the faculty’s PhD programme, the applicant must hold a 5-year masters degree or equivalent qualification (”hovedfag”, masters degree, professional degree or similar) within the discipline with which the fellow will be associated. If the applicant holds a masters degree from a foreign place of learning, or a 5-year discipline-based masters degree (or equivalent) within a discipline other than that with which the applicant will be associated, the applicant must submit the reading list for his/her masters degree course. If this gives rise to doubt within the committee, the relevant department must decide whether the awarded degree satisfies the department’s requirements.

    The committee will assess the:

    1. Applicant’s basic qualifications (documented education)
    2. Applicant’s scholarly qualifications
    3. Standard of project

    In their assessment of basic qualifications, the committee will put special emphasis on the masters thesis and the overall grade achieved.

    If a candidate has completed supplementary courses which are of relevance to the research project, this will be taken into consideration by the committee when assessing the applicants.

    If a candidate acquired relevant working practice as a research worker and/or research assistant while studying and/or after completing his/her course, this will count as a positive assessment factor.

    Scholarly qualifications

    The committee will attach special importance to any scholarly qualifications documented by printed works other than the masters thesis. Priority is given to single or co-authorship of publications aimed at an international readership. The "Guidance Notes for Applicants", ask applicants to specify their own contribution to any joint project, or to refer to a contact person who knows the applicant and his/her work, and who is available for the expert committee to contact. The applicant is asked to clearly indicate which scholarly works he/she considers to be most significant.

    Standard of project

    When assessing the standard of the project, the committee will attach importance to whether the work is likely to result in a thesis of international standing and attain a high academic standard in terms of problem formulation, conceptual precision, methodical, theoretical and empirical basis, documentation and presentation. Furthermore, the committee must attach importance to the degree in which the research will represent an independent contribution to existing knowledge. Such contributions may relate to concept analysis, the development of theory and method, and empirical material.

    Considerable importance must be attached to the realism of the research project. The committee will carefully assess whether the project’s content and framework conditions are such that its implementation within the fellowship period, i.e. three years, is more likely to succeed than not. When making this assessment, the committee must be aware that a deduction should be made for any earlier recruitment employment during which the applicant worked with (parts of) the project.


    Weighting of qualifications

    When ranking the applicants, the committee will consider their basic qualifications, their scholarly qualifications and the standard of their projects. The three qualification criteria are weighted as follows:

    Basic qualifications


    Scholarly qualifications


    Standard of project


    Recommendation format

    The merits of each applicant should be briefly described in as equal terms as possible with respect to education and practice, scholarly works and project description. For applicants who have been found by the committee to be not qualified, a brief statement should be provided with an indication of which requirements the applicant has failed to fulfil. If any of the recommended applicants have been working with (parts of) the project during a recruitment or employment period, this must be clearly stated in the recommendation.

    In order to provide a proper basis for further work by recommending and employing bodies, the committee will set out, as clearly as possible, the respective candidates’ overall competence relative to one another.

    Given the required number of competent applicants, the committee will submit their opinion and rank the three best qualified applicants accordingly.

    The assessment of each qualified applicant should be structured as follows:

    1. Basic qualifications

    • Academic education
    • Course performance / grades
    • Relevant practice

    2. Scholarly qualifications over and beyond the masters degree

    • Published works
    • Manuscripts

    3. Standard of project

    • Brief description of project
    • The project’s scholarly contribution
    • Feasibility within the time schedule
    • Academic anchorage and support

    4. Conclusion