Doctoral education

Doctoral thesis at Aalto University

On this page you find resources and guidelines for doctoral students and information on doctoral theses at Aalto University.

Loading table of contents
Drawing of a stack of books, with notes between the pages of the books.

Research plan is the basis for thesis work. Doctoral students follow the general quality requirements for doctoral theses at Aalto University and the possible School-specific guidelines.

Doctoral theses are published in the Aalto University publication series and are publicly available.

Topic and language of doctoral thesis

The topic of your doctoral thesis must be approved by the Doctoral Programme Committee of your School. The topic is approved when you are admitted to the programme (except at the School of Business the topic is decided at a later stage).

The language of instruction at Aalto doctoral programmes is, in principle, English but the doctoral thesis can also be completed in Finnish or in Swedish (in the field of business only in English or in Finnish). Normally, the language of your degree is the language in which you write your thesis (English, Finnish or Swedish).

Language of doctoral thesis and degree (

Resources and tools

How to use Turnitin to improve and protect your doctoral thesis?

The idea of scientific writing with references and source information is to show your own contribution (new research results) in relation to what was already known.

The requirement is that you write in your own words and give credit to the authors of the sources you have utilized. Besides being a skill, this requirement is also an ethical principle. Disregarding this principle means for example unacknowledged borrowing or plagiarism. Plagiarism is not accepted in doctoral theses. You should practice skilful writing and make sure beforehand that your text is following good practices of academic writing.

It is highly recommended to utilize Turnitin in order to identify unintentional and intentional plagiarism.

How to start using Turnitin?

The most fruitful way of taking advantage of Turnitin is to use it in co-operation with your supervising professor. You can check if your supervising professor already has a workspace in MyCourses. If your supervising professor doesn’t have a workspace, they can order a ready-made personal workspace for thesis supervision.

See detailed instructions below.

Aalto University Code of Academic Integrity and Turnitin usage includes the handling procedure in the case of suspected plagiarism

General quality requirements for doctoral theses at Aalto University

  • A doctoral thesis shall contain new scientific knowledge in the field it represents. In the field of art and design, the doctoral thesis may also contain new methods of artistic creation or products or transactions, which fulfil high artistic demands.
  • The doctoral thesis must present the new results clearly and in a manner meeting the criteria set for scientific texts.
  • The independent contribution to the research shall be sufficient and clearly demonstrable.
  • The research methods used shall fulfil the criteria set for scientific or art-based research.
  • A doctoral thesis shall conform to the principles of responsible conduct of research and adhere to ethically sustainable principles.

Doctoral dissertations at Aalto University, Decision of the Aalto University Academic Affairs Committee, 1 December 2015

Different formats of doctoral theses

Schools may approve doctoral thesis in the forms described below. Schools take the decision on the acceptable formats of thesis and give further guidelines on the requirements for doctoral thesis as needed.

Doctoral dissertations at Aalto University, Decision of the Aalto University Academic Affairs Committee, 1 December 2015

In the field of art and design, a doctoral thesis may also include artistic components such as art productions, series of art productions meaningfully connected to each other, or product development projects. More information is available at the page artistic components (

School-specific guidelines for doctoral thesis

ARTS: Formats of doctoral theses (
CHEM: Instructions for doctoral theses (
ELEC: Forms of doctoral theses (

Finalising and publishing doctoral thesis

Doctoral students at Aalto University publish their thesis through the Aalto Publication Platform. Doctoral theses are public documents by law and available at Aalto University's open access repository Aaltodoc.

Doctoral thesis: preparation for pre-examination and publicationPublishing your doctoral thesis

Publishing doctoral theses

Aalto University has one shared publication series for its doctoral theses.

Doctoral hats in Aalto University Conferment

Public defence at Aalto University

Instructions for planning and arranging public defences (for doctoral student and custos)

Doctoral hat floating above a speaker's podium with a microphone

Awarding doctoral thesis work

Dipoli artwork on the wall by Inni Pärnänen / photo Aalto Unviersity, Mikko Raskinen

Incentive scholarships for doctoral students

A set of 500e and 2000e incentive scholarships are awarded by application for doctoral students who meet the conditions given.

Doctoral education
School of Engineering Award

Aalto doctoral thesis awards

Top ten percent of doctoral theses are awarded annually at Aalto University

Doctoral education

Find published doctoral theses

Aaltodoc logo

Doctoral theses at Aaltodoc (external link)

Doctoral theses at Aalto University are available in the open access repository maintained by Aalto, Aaltodoc.

Next public defences at Aalto University

Doctoral hat floating above a speaker's podium with a microphone
Public defences

Public defence in Biotechnology, M.Sc. (Tech.) Teemu Välisalmi

Exploring silk protein assembly mechanisms for high-performance materials (title of the thesis)
Doctoral hat floating above a speaker's podium with a microphone
Public defences

Public defence in Signal Processing for Communications, M.Sc. Mohsen Abedi

Improving the quality of wireless communication/positioning networks through optimal placement of access points.
Painting of a dry landscape with dried up trees.
Public defences

Public defence in Water and Environmental Engineering, M.Sc. (Tech) Lauri Ahopelto

Climate change increases drought-related risks also in Finland. Risk management should be developed in a proactive and comprehensive manner.
Temperature profile of directly initiated Hydrogen/Air detonation: illustrating Richtmyer-Meshkov (RM) and detonation cellular i
Public defences

Public defence in Mechanical Engineering, M.Sc. Ali Shahanaghi

Numerical modeling of thermal stratification driven combustion regimes (Title of the Thesis)
Doctoral education
  • Published:
  • Updated: