Every year, over 200 PhD students defend their theses at the University of Antwerp. The Antwerp Doctoral School helps them complete the PhD process successfully and prepares them for their careers by means of a tailor-made doctoral programme.

A passion for research

For many students, their PhD is the highlight of their academic careers. After all, the title of "doctor" is the highest rank you can achieve at a Flemish university.

For quite some time, most people associated doctoral studies with an image of a lonely researcher in a lab or library.  While doctoral research involves a lot of individual work, it can also be very dynamic. PhD students have the opportunity to share their research interests with other specialists in their field, to transmit their passion for their field to students, to study the work of international colleagues in the same field, and to acquire skills which are hugely relevant for all types of careers at a particularly high level.

A helping hand

Doctoral research can be incredibly fascinating, but it is also a very intensive process which may involve a certain amount of pressure. That is why the Antwerp Doctoral School (ADS) spares no effort to provide all the guidance it can to its PhD students and supervisors and also develop the university's policy in this field.

The emphasis is on the mandatory doctoral programme, which gives PhD students the opportunity to further develop certain well-defined skills. This will help them complete their doctoral programme as efficiently as possible. The programme also prepares them for their post-doctoral careers, both in and outside of the academic world.

Students starting a doctoral research project join one of the university's research teams, where they can count on the support of other researchers. Doctoral students from a university college in the Antwerp University Association or from a research institution such as the Institute for Tropical Medicine can also count on the doctoral school's support.

Finger on the pulse

The Antwerp Doctoral School monitors the progress of doctoral research by means of annual reporting. In addition, it also offers PhD students free Dutch and English-language courses, as well as financial and administrative support.  Finally, it also aims to keep PhD students informed about interesting initiatives and activities by sending out newsletters and organising information sessions.