PhD Course in Educational Sciences (DUH221)

Educational sciences are a multidisciplinary field that spans pedagogy and a range of its sub disciplines. It also comprises educational research rooted in the social sciences, psychology, sociology and the humanities.

Educational sciences, their application, potential and relationship to various types of practices, are not primarily defined relative to other scientific fields, but by education, broadly understood.

Educational sciences comprise research on learning, teaching, and education within societal institutions like kindergarten, school, family, leisure and workplaces. These are relevant areas of scientific and scholarly studies.

Course description for study year 2024-2025. Please note that changes may occur.


Course code




Credits (ECTS)


Semester tution start


Number of semesters


Exam semester


Language of instruction

English, Norwegian


The course will address historical and current approaches to the construction of the field of educational sciences. The content of the course is organized into three main topics: (i) The educational sciences; Nordic and European perspectives, (ii) Educational sciences; research approaches at the Faculty of Arts and Education (iii) Research status and challenges.

Learning outcome

The course will provide the students with the following learning outcomes:


  • Comprehensive knowledge of the field of educational sciences, its construction and developments.
  • In-depth knowledge of competing research paradigms within the field, (i.e. key analytical concepts, theoretical models, and research practices), and their relation to educational policies and practices.


  • Relate their doctoral projects to the field of educational sciences.
  • Identify and handle complex academic issues, and critically analyze research within the field.

General competence

  • Identify, reflect upon, and evaluate ethical issues relating to research in the educational sciences.
  • Contribute to critically reflective discussions regarding the field's basic assumptions, discourses and research practices.

Required prerequisite knowledge

Applicants must meet the requirements for enrollment in PhD programs.


Form of assessment Weight Duration Marks Aid
Individual paper 1/1 Passed / Not Passed

Evaluation will be based on the students' individual papers of 4500 words (+/-10%). The papers will be graded Pass/Fail. Students will earn 5 credits for the course when a paper has been submitted and approved. The students' workload will be approximately 150 hours of work.Deadlines:The paper should be submitted within 4 weeks after the final seminar.

Coursework requirements

Active participation/attendance
The course will be taught as a seminar with discussions of reading material and student presentations. Active participation is required. Attendance at the sessions is obligatory. A student who, for whatever reason, is absent from 25% or more of the sessions will not be permitted to submit the paper.

Course teacher(s)

Study Program Director:

Hein Berdinesen

Course coordinator:

Ketil Knutsen

Method of work

The course work consists of lectures, discussions and student presentations. Whenever there are non-Scandinavian speakers present, the working language will be English. When only Scandinavian/Norwegian speakers participate, Norwegian/Scandinavian will be used.

The course is organized in three blocks; part one runs over two days (2 x 6 hours), the second and third both cover one day (2 x 6 hours). A detailed schedule will be available when the course is announced.

Overlapping courses

Course Reduction (SP)
PhD Course in Educational Sciences (DSP221_1) 5

Open for

The course is open to PhD candidates in educational sciences and related scientific fields.

Course assessment

There must be an early dialogue between the course supervisor, the student union representative and the students. The purpose is feedback from the students for changes and adjustments in the course for the current semester.In addition, a digital subject evaluation must be carried out at least every three years. Its purpose is to gather the students experiences with the course.


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