Doctoral Study Plan


The study points system (credit system) for higher education institutions, which is regulated according to Government Decree 200/2000 (XI. 29.) regarding self-financed and state schol-arship-sponsored PhD students who started their doctoral programs in September 2016, con-sists of two phases.

The first is the study and research phase that encompasses the first two years. This is followed by a research and dissertation phase which comprises the third and fourth years following the completion of a successful complex exam. The fulfilment of academic and research obligations for doctoral students is measured in credits. A doctoral student must earn at least 240 credits during their studies and training.
The most important components of the doctoral program are the research activity topics that the doctoral school announces. Research activities are evaluated in two ways, both with corresponding credit values. The first is the fulfilment of individual scientific research; the second is through publication.
Students take complex exams at the end of Year 2.
To be eligible to take the complex exam, doctoral students must first obtain 90 credits in the “training and research stages” of the doctoral program (the first 4 semesters) AS WELL AS complete the required courses and earn all the credits as stated in their study and research plan.
The doctoral supervisor shall certify a doctoral student’s completion of independent scholarly research each semester in the student’s registration book.
The minimum and maximum limits of obtainable credit points are listed in the table below:

Points Subject Instruction Research Publication
Minimum 40 0 140 32
Recommended 40 20 140  40
Maximum 52 20 140 48

The basic principles of a doctoral training curriculum are the following:


Phase Study and research Research and dissertation Total
Semester 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th
Subjects 10 14 8 8   40
compulsory min. 2 subjects completed 10         
min. 1 foreign language course is compulsory   6        
optional (electives) 4 credits   8 8 8      
Doctoral seminar × × × ×      signature criterion
Instruction          20
Independent Scholarly Research 15 15 15 20 20 20 20 20 140
Publications   40
Total   240
  1. During the study and research phase, students must complete 2 subjects with a credit weight of 5-5 from among the compulsory subjects. The completion of a 6 credit foreign language subject is a requirement; this requirement can be fulfilled at other graduate schools.
  2. Attending 2-2 presentations in the first 4 semesters within the framework of a doctoral seminar is a mandatory criteria condition. Of these, one must be a seminar organized by the University of Sopron; the other must be an equivalent or higher level seminar. The doctoral supervisor verifies the completion of this in the student’s registration book each semester; no credits are awarded for this.
  3. A doctoral student may attain credits (5 credits/semester) by undertaking teaching tasks, as well as participating in practicums, presentations, and co-tutoring activities (TDK, dissertation, thesis planning.)
  4. By the end of the first semester, doctoral students must prepare an academic bibliog-raphy for their research topic, which is reviewed by the director of the graduate school and doctoral supervisor.

With the assistance of the doctoral supervisor, students prepare a work plan by the end of year 1. The head of the graduate school, the program head, and the doctoral super-visor review the work plan. In the case of correspondence students, the director or the workplace shall review the plan. The work plan shall specify the subjects the student wishes to take each semester, as well as a detailed research plan and budget plan.
The most important activity of a doctoral student is scholarly research. The student shall receive assistance and guidance from their doctoral supervisor, but research is completed individually. Students present their results at appropriate academic conferences and, with increasing autonomy, publish in relevant, high-quality journals. Stu-dents submit a semester report containing details of their work at the end of every se-mester. Doctoral students must give an oral report about their research and work at least once a year (usually in the spring semester.) The forum for the report can be a DI forum, the research centre, the professional community of the institute, an academic or other professional forum (any domestic or international conference if it is approved by the disciplinary doctoral board.) The report is public.
The credits awarded for the appearance of research results in publications are given in the ta-ble below:

Shoraly  Credit See
Journal article with impact factor 16 →
without impact factor, but Q1-Q4  14 →
academic journal listing – foreign language 10 e.g. IV. Agronomy science: → 
academic journal listing – Hungarian language  8
other peer-reviewed – foreign language  8
other peer-reviewed – Hungarian language 6
Book chapter – peer reviewed foreign language 10  
Hungarian language  8  
Conference paper – complete text, peer-reviewed foreign language 10  
Hungarian language 8  
Other – complete text, not peer-reviewed foreign language 4  
Hungarian language 2  
All others (educational, public interest, etc.) foreign language 2  
Hungarian language 1  

Publications are made available to the public by the Hungarian Academy of Sciences ( →) from where the full text can be uploaded to the University of Sopron’s Publication Repository ( →).
The minimum publishing requirements are as follows: at least two lead author, foreign language articles, which must have an impact factor of at least Q1-Q3, published in peer-reviewed journals published by the end of the Semester 8.
The credits listed in the credit table will be divided by the number of co-authors; the doctoral supervisor shall not be counted as a co-author. Credits will be doubled for PhD students if they are lead author of the publication.

Complex Examination

Requirements to apply for the complex examination

  • The fulfilment of the foreign language requirements needed for a doctoral degree ac-cording to point B of (ld. Nftv. 53.§ (5) “As defined in PhD regulations, the necessity to verify scientific and academic knowledge within the study area in two foreign lan-guages is necessary”);
  • Obtain at least 90 credits during the training and research phase (first four semesters) of the doctoral program AND obtain all the “training credits” outlined in the doctoral school study plan.

The complex examination is public, and is taken before a board. The examination board must consist of at least three members; at least one-third of the board members must not be affiliat-ed or have any employment relationship with the institution of the doctoral school. The chair-person of the examination board shall be a professor emeritus or an instructor or researcher holding the title of DSc. All members of the exam board shall possess a scholarly degree. The candidate’s doctoral supervisor cannot be a member of the examination board.

The complex exam consists of two components: one to assess a candidate's academic preparedness (“theoretical part”) and the other to allow the candidate to give an account of their scientific/artistic progress (“dissertation part”).
In the theoretical part of the complex examination, the candidate is assessed in at least two subjects/topics. The theory test can contain a written component as well.
In the second part of the complex exam, the candidate will present their knowledge of the research literature, report their research results, outline the second phase of their doctoral re-search training plan, and describe the timing of their dissertation and their timeline and preparations for publication. The doctoral supervisor must inform the candidate in advance as to whether the candidate will be evaluated in writing or in the examination.
The examination board evaluates the theoretical part of the exam and dissertation sepa-rately. A written evaluation and examination protocol for the exam are completed. Exam re-sults will be published on the day of the oral exam. The complex exam is deemed successful if a majority of the committee members declares the two parts of the examination successful. If the theoretical exam is unsuccessful, a candidate will be provided the opportunity to retake the failed portion/subject(s) of the exam within the given exam period. A failed dissertation exam component cannot be retaken during the given exam period.

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