Criteria for title of docent


Awarding the title of docent at the University of Helsinki requires a corpus of scientific work equal to at least two dissertations, as well as good teaching skills. At the application stage, the applicant for the title must submit a list of their academic publications and other merits and demonstrate their teaching skills. The applicant's eligibility will be assessed by independent scientific experts.

More detailed faculty-specific instructions for applying for a title of docent can be found on the faculties' public websites:

     Faculty of Biological and Environmental Sciences Bio- ja ympäristötieteellinen tiedekunta

     Faculty of Veterinary Medicine Eläinlääketieteellinen tiedekunta

     Faculty of Pharmacy Farmasian tiedekunta

     Faculty of Humanities Humanistinen tiedekunta

     Faculty of Educational Sciences Kasvatustieteellinen tiedekunta

     Faculty of Medicine Lääketieteellinen tiedekunta

     Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry Maatalous-metsätieteellinen tiedekunta

     Faculty of Science Matemaattis-luonnontieteellinen tiedekunta

     Faculty of Law Oikeustieteellinen tiedekunta

     Faculty of Theology Teologinen tiedekunta

     Faculty of Social Sciences Valtiotieteellinen tiedekunta

The title of docent may in Finland be granted upon application. The title is in Finnish dosentti and in Swedish docent. It is purely an academic title conferred to a person fulfilling the requirements. According to Section 84 of the University of Helsinki Regulations, the University may grant the title of docent to a person who has comprehensive knowledge of his or her own field, a capacity for independent research or artistic work as demonstrated through publications or some other manner, and good teaching skills. The term is derived from the Latin word docēns, which is the present active participle of docēre (to teach, to lecture).

The Finnish Docents' Association has decided to recommend the use of the title Associate Professor in the English translation of the docent. The translation best corresponds to the scientific merit of docents in the changed situation and in international comparisons. The background is the proliferation of working life professor titles, the creation of career paths in tenure track programs, and the demands of international cooperation. Earlier the recommendation was the use of the title of Adjunct Professor. Today, this title misrepresents the content of docentship and underestimates the competence of docents. In Sweden, the title Associate Professor is already in use as a translation of the docent.