Categories of PhD Candidates

The university classifies PhD candidates into five categories. The candidates within these categories have different rights and positions within the organisation. Distinctions between the PhD categories are employment and the location / organisation where the research is conducted.

The categories are:

Research assistants

Research assistants are PhDs who are temporarily employed at Wageningen for a period of four years. In the Netherlands they were formerly known as AIO or OIO. As a research assistant you will have all the benefits that a job at the university offers, such as a competitive salary, excellent working facilities and a fair amount of leave days.

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Sandwich PhD candidates

Sandwich PhD candidates are international PhD candidates who only spend part of their time at Wageningen. As a sandwich PhD candidate you will not be employed by the university. You will have a grant and you will generally only spend the initial and last six to eight months of the four-year PhD programme in Wageningen. In the intermediate period you will conduct your research in your country of origin. You will need to have the support of both your home institute and supervisor at the university before you can start your PhD programme.

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Guest PhD candidates

Guest PhD candidates conduct research at the university but are not employed by Wageningen. As a guest PhD candidate you are required to pay tuition fees and departmental fees. If you apply for a guest PhD position at Wageningen, you must be able demonstrate at an early stage of the application procedure that you have secured appropriate financial support as well as commitment from the relevant department or institute at the university.

External PhD candidates

External PhD candidates are not employed by the university. As an external PhD candidate you conduct or have conducted your research at an institute outside the university, but you do receive guidance from a supervisor in Wageningen. You will not be required  to pay fees and are not entitled to an education budget. If you choose to participate in an education programme, the programme should paid for by your PhD sponsor.

Staff PhD candidates

Sometimes employees of the university are given the opportunity to conduct PhD research. As a staff PhD candidate you are not required to pay tuition fees or departmental fees and do not have to register at the Student Service Centre.