Entry Requirements to Doctoral Education at Karolinska Institutet, KI

In order for you to be eligible to doctoral studies at KI you are required to meet both the general and the specific entry requirements.

KI follows the guidelines developed by the Association of Swedish Higher Education (SUHF), and the Swedish Council for Higher Education (UHR) in the assessment of general and specific eligibility.

The General Eligibility Requirement 

A prospective doctoral student meets the general entry requirement for doctoral education if he or she: 

  1. has been awarded a degree at advanced (equivalent to second-cycle in Sweden) level, or, 
  2. has satisfied the requirements for courses comprising at least 240 credits (ECTS) of which at least 60 credits (ECTS) were awarded at advanced level, or 
  3. has acquired substantially equivalent knowledge in some other way in Sweden or abroad. 

The higher education institution may permit an exemption from the general entry requirements for an individual applicant, if there are special grounds. Please see the Higher Education Ordinance Chapt 7 section 39.

Your studies must have been completed at an internationally recognised university. 

The Specific Eligibility Requirement on Language Proficiency in English 

All prospective doctoral students must show proficiency in English equivalent to the Swedish upper secondary school course English B/English 6 with a passing grade. 

Applicants with academic credentials from the Nordic countries 

Applicants who meet the general entry requirements according to point 1 or 2, see above, through academic credentials from a Nordic higher education institution is assessed to meet the English language requirement. This means that prospective doctoral students who fulfill the general entry requirements through academic credentials from a Nordic higher education institution, only need to submit documents that certify the general entry requirements.

Applicants with academic credentials from a country outside of the Nordic region 

For information on how applicants with foreign academic credentials, foreign upper secondary school credentials or an internationally recognised English test can certify the English requirement, please see English language requirements for doctoral education

Documentation requirements – for those with Swedish academic credentials 

The following documents must be uploaded for each doctoral student position that you apply for through the recruitment system Varbi: 

Completed master’s degree (advanced level) 

An applicant with a completed master’s degree must submit the following documents: 

  • Master’s degree certificate 
  • Official transcript of records 

Ongoing master’s studies (advanced level) 

An applicant with ongoing master’s studies must submit the following documents: 

  • Official transcript of records with all completed courses at master’s level 
  • Bachelor's degree certificate 
  • Bachelor’s official transcript of records 

Documentation requirements – for those with foreign academic credentials 

The following documents must be uploaded for each doctoral student position that you apply for through the recruitment system Varbi: 

Completed master’s degree (advanced level) 

An applicant with a completed master’s degree must submit the following documents: 

  • Bachelor's and master's degree certificates in original language 
  • Official transcript of records of your master’s and bachelor’s studies in original language 
  • Diploma supplements (if applicable) 
  • Documentation that certify the English requirement 

 

Ongoing master’s studies (advanced level) 

An applicant with ongoing master’s studies must submit the following documents: 

  • Bachelor's degree certificate in original language 
  • Bachelor’s official transcript of records in original language 
  • Diploma supplements (if applicable) 
  • Official transcript of records with all completed courses at master’s level 
  • Documentation that certify the English requirement 

If you have ongoing master’s studies in a country outside of European Higher Education Area (EHEA), in addition to the above, you should also submit a syllabus for your master's degree programme.

Kindly note that 60 credits from a non-EHEA country might not be the same as 60 ECTS.

 

General eligibility - equivalent knowledge 

If you do not meet the general eligibility requirement through your education, but have other qualifications that may compensate, Karolinska Institutet will assess these qualifications to determine if you have equivalent knowledge. Please make sure you submit the following documents:  

A translation is required if the original documents are issued in a language other than Swedish, Danish, English or Norwegian. The translation must be made by an authorized translator into one of these languages. There might be country specific exceptions from this requirement. Read more about translations at the bottom of this page.

You can find more information about equivalent knowledge for general eligibility for doctoral education here

Documentation Formalities

How to scan

The documents must be scans of originals (and not scans of certified copies or copies). Karolinska Institutet will not accept scans of copies. If your documents have been issued in color, then you must scan them in color. Please make sure you scan all pages, including both front and back sides of pages (including for example diploma covers, pages which only contain stamps or information on the education system), and make sure that all details are visible.

Official documents 

Your degree certificate and transcript of record must be officially issued. This usually means that the degree and transcript has been issued by the Examination's or Registrar's office. The original degree and transcript must usually include official stamps and signatures by the issuing officer. 

Translations

A translation is required if the original documents are issued in a language other than Swedish, Danish, English or Norwegian. The translation must be made by an authorized translator into one of these languages. There might be country specific exceptions from this requirement. Karolinska Institutet uses the same documentation requirements as specified by University Admissions. For more information regarding country specific documentation requirements please visit their web page.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I go about to make my application to one of KI:s student doctoral positions?

Can my University diploma/Degree Certificate and Transcript of Records be uploaded as one combined file in Varbi?

Yes, it does not matter if you upload the documents separatelly or as one combined file. KI have access to all files that you upload to your application. Remember to upload all documents to all applications that you make however.

Will references, professional qualifications to regulated professions, CV, letters of recommendation, personal letter, certificates of previous employments, CGPA, etcetera affect my chanses of being selected by the reqruiting department?

We kindly refer all questions about the selection of candidate to the contact person in the advertisement (contact details can be found in the advertisement).

Will my answers to the questions in the application affect my chances of being selected?

We kindly refer all questions about the selection of candidate to the contact person in the advertisement (contact details can be found in the advertisements).

When are you going to get in touch with our referees? Also, when are we going to know if we are chosen for an interview? 

We kindly refer all questions about the selection of candidate to the contact person in the advertisement (contact details can be found in the advertisements). . 

Can I upload additional documents or update my application in Varbi after deadline?

You who have applied for an announced student doctoral postion cannot add new documents after deadline. However, you can submit additional documents to the e-mail address doctoraleligibilty@ki.se after deadline.

How does KI assess my submitted documents?

Can KI make a preliminary assessment of my documents?

No, KI does not make any preliminary assessments. You have to register an application in Varbi. Your application will then be assessed in time and order.

Do I just have to upload my documents and then my application is assessed automatically?

The Admissions team at KI will assess your submitted documents for doctoral eligibility. After that, the reqruiting department selects the candidate.

I do not have a degree on the advanced level. However I have many scientific publications and experience as a scientist. How do I go about to apply for assessment of equivalent knowledge?

Submit your bachelor degree diploma. Review information about equivalent knowledge to the general eligibility to doctoral education. Fill out the form for application of assessment of equivalent knowledge. Note that you can only apply for assessment of equivalent knowledge for the general eligibility to doctoral education. You can not apply for equivalent knowledge for the specific eligibility requirement (language proficiency in English) which has to be shown formally.

I have a masters degree in economics, can I still be eligible to doctoral education at KI?

Yes. Doctoral eligibility is depending on the level and extent of your previous academic studies. It does not depend on the main area of studies. KI does however only offer doctoral education in the main area of Medical Science.

I know the English language very well but how do I go about to prove it formally?

I have a bachelor’s and master’s degree with English as Language of Instruction. Do I still need to take a language proficience test in English?

It depends on the documentation of your diplomas and which country you studied in. Note that there might be country specific information.

I was born and raised in an English speaking country, or I have citizenship in an English speaking country. What applies for me?

Even you who have English as native language or have citizenship in an English speaking country  need to prove your language proficiency in English formally to meet the KI specific eligibility requirement.

Which English language proficience tests does KI accept? Could you tell med exactly where does KI place the cut-off for accepting the language test score?

KI accepts several English language proficiency tests. The scores differ among the different tests.

Can I meet the specific eligibility requirement in English proficiency through upper secondary studies or Municipality Adult education?

You who have Swedish upper secondary studies or Municipality adult education in English B/6 kan submit your grades, or an excerpt, from central Admission to your application in Varbi.

Will KI accept a letter from my home University about the language of instruction, or does the language of instruction need to be stated on the officially issued Degree, Transcript of Records or Diploma Supplement?

It depends on which country your bachelor and master degree studies are from. You may want to check what applies for your country of study.

Which documents do I need to submit?

Does KI require of me to submit my original diploma? What applies about signatures, stamps etc?

You must submit scans of your original degree/diploma and transcript. Copies will not be accepted. Find out more under the heading Documentation Formalities.

Must foreign documents be translated by an authorized translator?

A translation is required if the original documents are issued in a language other than Swedish, Danish, English or Norwegian. The translation must be made by an authorized translator into one of these languages. re might be country specific exceptions from this requirement. Find out more under the heading Documentation Formalities.

I am currently studying an integrated master program. The program doesn’t offer a bachelor degree diploma but I am now on my final year of studies. Which documents can I submit to show that I have at least 240 ECTS of which at least 60 ECTS or equivalent are on the advanced level?

Submit your most recently issued Transcript of Records. Provide us with formal documentation from your home university that explains hours/credits/other if not given in ECTS. A sullabys can also be helpful for us as well.

I have a master’s degree diploma. Does this mean that I only need to submit my master’s degree diploma and not my bachelor’s degree diploma?

Yes. If you hold a master’s degree diploma it is enough that you submit your master’s degree diploma together with Transcript of Records. However, if you have a foreign bachelor’s or master’s degree diploma from a country where the academic levels differ from those established with the Bologna process, you must also submit your bachelor’s degree diploma together with Transcript of Records.

If your master’s degree studies are ongoing, make sure to submit Transcript of Records and syllabus.

I have ongoing studies on the advanced level (master’s degree level), which documents do I need to submit with my application?

Submit your bachelor degree diploma (if you have one). Also submit your most recently issued Transcript of Records of both your bachelor’s degree and master’s degree studies. Please attach formal documentation, issued by your home University, that explains hours/credits/other if your home University does not give ECTS. Submitting your syllabus is also helpful.  

I still have not found the answer to my question, whom should I contact?

Is there any scholarship or fund for doctoral students?

For information abour scholarships and financing we kindly refere you to Grants Office. If you have further questions we refer you to the local HR at the KI department.

I already hold a doctoral diploma and I need guidance for my career. Should I contact you?

No, it is better if you contact KI Career Service for postdocs and researchers.

I still have not found the answer to my question, whom should I contact?

You are welcome to contact doctoraleligibility@ki.se for your questions about doctoral eligibility at KI.