4+4 PhD programme

From ‘MSc IN ECONOMICS AND BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION AT AARHUS UNIVERSITY, SCHOOL OF BUSINESS AND SOCIAL SCIENCES September 2014

PRE-PHD - PART OF THE 4+4 PROGRAMME
To be considered for admission, students must hold a relevant bachelor’s degree and must have completed course work corresponding to 60 ECTS credits in one of the MSc specializations in Economics and Business Administration offered at the School of Business and Social Sciences, Aarhus University. The 4+4 programme requires 4+4 PhD students to complete their Master’s degree within the first two years of the 4+4 PhD degree programme (i.e. during the first two years students are enrolled in the Master’s as well as the PhD degree programmes). On condition that all requirements are fulfilled, students will achieve the master’s degree. For the remaining two years, students are enrolled as PhD students only. Read more about application etc.

4+4 PhD programme
The evaluation method described below exclusively applies to students enrolled in the 4+4 PhD programme, i.e. in the ‘pre-PhD phase’. For students enrolled in this programme at Department of Management, the remaining 60 ECTS of the MSc degree consists of the following three elements:

  1. complete PhD courses (from the Department’s or BSS' courses) amounting to 20 ECTS – the courses must be approved by the head of the programme;
  2. write an extended PhD project description for the entire PhD or alternatively a monograph chapter or an article for an anthology addressing the research question(s) and research design in question (10 ECTS); and
  3. write an MSc thesis consisting of a chapter or an article from the PhD thesis under development amounting to 30 ECTS.

For students enrolled in this programme at Department of Economics, the remaining 60 ECTS of the MSc degree consists of the following three elements:

  1. complete PhD courses amounting to 20 ECTS;
  2. write an extended PhD project description for the entire PhD or alternatively a monograph chapter or an article for an anthology addressing the research question(s) and research design in question (10 ECTS); and
  3. write an MSc thesis consisting of a chapter or an article from the PhD thesis under development amounting to 30 ECTS.

Based on the MSc thesis material and readings from the two PhD methods courses, an oral exam (involving a qualified 4+4 experienced external examiner) will take place at the end of the second year thus completing the MSc part of the 4+4 programme.  All in all, the two written assignments should not exceed 50 A4 pages (2400 characters incl. of spaces).

The objective of the Master thesis:

The student should be able to:

  1. draft a well-defined problem statement and argue for the relevance and usefulness of this problem statement;
  2. identify relevant literature within economic and business administration, extract the essence and argue for its relevance to the problem statement, and reflect on its strengths and weaknesses on relation to the problem statement;
  3. identify and apply relevant empirical and/or analytical methods and justify their relevance and limitations to the problem statement;
  4. adequately apply tools and methods from economic and business administration to analyze the problems involved, evaluate and synthesize the obtained insight and results in a comprehensible way;
  5. demonstrate an ability to differentiate between essential and not essential material;
  6. demonstrate critical reflections regarding the obtained results in relation to the problem statement, the methodology used and the literature and derive the most important conclusions of the analyses;
  7. apply a scientific, clear and concise language to present the analyses, both in the thesis and at the defence;
  8. at the defence, argue for the main premises and results in the thesis, and adequately respond to the comments made by the examiners

Method of instruction: Supervision as agreed with supervisors.

The subject for the Master thesis must be worked out individually. The oral exam will be the basis for assessing the thesis and the readings from the two PhD courses. The oral defence takes 45 minutes.

21703 / i32