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Doctoral Programme in Drug Research (DPDR)

The aim of DPDR is to educate experts having wide view of the whole life cycle of medicines and toxicology.

The main doctoral education is research, which is performed in the research groups under guidance of supervisor(s). During research work, also soft skills are learned. These skills can also be studied in the doctoral school’s training events.

DPDR is a multidisciplinary doctoral programme and its strong fields include drug design and synthesis, medicinal chemistry, bioactivity screening, pharmaceutical microbiology, drug formulation, industrial manufacturing, pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, nanomedicines, analytics, drug interactions, pharmacogenetics, pharmacology and clinical pharmacology, clinical drug research, pharmacoepidemiology, clinical pharmacy, pharmacoeconomics, toxicology and clinical toxicology and veterinary drug research.

Doctoral education in DPDR includes national and international courses, congresses and work visits out­side own working place. DPDR has wide network of experts representing several fields in drug research and toxicology. DPDR is one core unit in the national FinPharmaNet network, which covers seven uni­versities, representatives from national authorities and drug industry.  In addition, cooperation with scientific societies and doctoral candidates' own activities (Student council) and peer support helps in networking. Research expertise, other skills and career planning are followed in annual thesis committee meetings where outside scientific experts support the progress of doctoral candidates.

Key learning outcomes/objectives of education

According to Decree Statute 21 § of the government decree on university degrees (effective since 1.8.2005) and Government Decree 1039/2013 (unofficial translation), a person who has completed doctoral training has:

  1. Become well‐versed in his/her own field of research and its social significance
  2. Gained knowledge and skills needed to apply scientific research methods independently and critically, and the ability to produce new scientific knowledge within his/her field of research
  3. Become conversant with the development, basic problems and research methods of his/her own field of research
  4. Gained such knowledge of the general theory of science and of other disciplines relating to his/her own field of research as enables him/her to follow developments in them
  5. Acquired sufficient communication, language and other related general skills required for posts of high expertise and international collaboration

Career orientation/compulsory or elective traineeship

Research in doctoral education is team work in research groups which have national and international cooperation and networks. Practical research work has some transferable skills integrated in it and those can be strengthened by courses and activities provided by doctoral school. A period of work (two weeks at minimum) outside own research group is anticipated during doctoral education.

International mobility

Doctoral candidates are free to travel to participate suitable doctoral education events. DPDR provides travel grants by application for visits outside own working place, for participation to scientific courses, congresses and other events.

DPDR recommends that doctoral candidate participates at least in one international event every year and, if possible, and does scientific works outside own working place  at least once during doctoral education.

UH education reform

Please see rules for transition from the degree requirements of 2014–2017 to the curriculum of 2017–2020 here.

Degree programme director

Hélder A Santos (helder.santos@helsinki.fi)