Whoever chooses to obtain a PhD is given the opportunity to perform research for four to six years. Whoever completes this period successfully is given the degree and title of doctor; the highest possible academic degree in Belgium.
What does a PhD actually entail? For starters, the contents depends on the research domain that you chose. Regardless of the contents, you will in any case spend a vast amount of your time on studying literature, collecting data or samples and analyse them, to then report on your research findings. In each of these steps you are supported by a scientific expert, your promoter. At the end of the PhD study period, the entire research process is reflected in a doctoral thesis, which you will defend in front of an international scientific jury.
More information about the PhD process can be found here.
The image of a PhD candidate as 'lonely researcher in an ivory tower' is outdated. It is expected of modern PhD candidates that they share their work with the outside world from the very beginning and find their place in scientific fora within their research domain. This can happen through scientific publications, the exchange of ideas with colleagues, attending conferences and workshops, holding presentations and by expanding your scientific network.
Thanks to our doctoral schools you are offered the opportunity to develop not only academic skills during your PhD, but also so-called 'transferable skills'. These are generic skills which are transferable to other sectors. You might think of skills in project management and communication.
More information can be found on the website doctoreren in Vlaanderen.