Postgraduate education is the cycle of basic education aimed at developing the personality of PhD and grand PhD students, applicants for PhD, realizing their intellectual and creative potential and forming professional skills in organizing and conducting research.
PhD study (from Latin aspirans - aspirant) is the first stage of postgraduate education aimed at training specialists with planning and independent research skills, deep theoretical knowledge, which makes possible preparing a qualifying scientific work (thesis / dissertation) for the award of the PhD degree.
Doctoral study is the second stage of postgraduate education aimed at training specialists with the skills of organizing scientific work in a new area of scientific research or developing existing relevant areas of scientific research, analytical generalization of the results of research activity, which makes possible preparing a qualifying scientific work (thesis / dissertation) for the award of the grand PhD degree.
BSPU has created the system of increasing the efficiency of training highly qualified specialists in pedagogical education and scientific research. This system includes:
a set of measures aimed at recruiting talented young people into PhD programmes;
building a unified growth perspective in the chain “undergraduate – master’s degree student – PhD student – grand PhD student – researcher”;
creation of a problem field of priority psychological and pedagogical research;
methodological support of applicants for PhD and their scientific supervisors;
regular implementation of activities stimulating the research work of students, PhD students, young scientists;
high-quality current assessment in the form of methodological seminars;
systematic monitoring by the university administration as to how PhD and grand PhD scholarship holders write and defend their dissertations;
financial stimulation of applicants for PhD and scientific supervisors, etc.
In general, this system corresponds to the set of measures of improving the efficiency of postgraduate education for the period of 2017-2020 approved by the Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Belarus V.I. Zharko (No. 05 / 209-257 / 260 as of August 14, 2017).
As a result, annually the quantity of postgraduate students of BSPU who have completed their studies with a preliminary examination of the dissertation is steadily increasing. So, in 2013 their number was 7%, in 2016, 2017 – 20%, and then in 2018 – 31%.
There has been an increase in the rate of dissertation defense by postgraduate students within the established period of education. In 2018 7 PhD graduates defended their dissertations during the training period (26% of the total number of graduates); in 2017 3 PhD graduates (8%) and in 2016 3 PhD graduates (10%) defended their dissertations in due time.
In 2018 5 PhD students were awarded a scholarship from the President of the Republic of Belarus. Of these, 4 people (80%) defended their dissertations during the training period.
The university administration pays special attention to the scholarship holders of the special fund of the President of the Republic of Belarus. Since 2015 the scholarship holders have been obliged to submit monthly reports on the implementation of the individual work plan to the corresponding Department, and their quarterly reports – to the university administration. As a result, in the period of 2015-2018 the scholarship of the President of the Republic of Belarus was assigned to 21 PhD students. Of these, 15 people (62%) defended their dissertations (9 of them – during the period of doing PhD study).
The number of grand PhD students has increased more than 3 times. In December 2015 only 13 people studied the grand PhD programmes, but in December 2018 their number amounted to 41 people.
An indicator of confidence in the postgraduate studies at BSPU is the annual increase in the number of foreign citizens. So, in November 2012 8 foreign citizens did the PhD courses, in November 2017 – 19 foreign citizens, in November 2018 – 23 foreign citizens.
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Foreign PhD students take an active part in the scientific activities of BSPU. They participate in international and Republican scientific and practical conferences, in the International Scientific Olympiad in Pedagogy held annually as part of the Decade of Student Science, in the work of the International Methodological Seminar on Pedagogical and Psychological Sciences held monthly at BSPU, etc. In addition, foreign citizens participate in sports, musical and creative events: in Minsk Half Marathon, in “Star Trek” in the places of military and labor glory of the Belarusian people, in the sports and educational project “Belarusіyada”, in the festival “Garbuzovy Fest of BSPU”, in festive concerts and many other events.
In 2018 compared with the previous years there was an increase in the number of the employees of BSPU who defended their dissertations. A total of 17 employees’ dissertation defenses (1grand PhD dissertation and 16 PhD dissertations) were held in 2018. In 2015 only 5 employees of BSPU defended their dissertations (3grand PhD dissertations and 7 PhD dissertations), in 2016 10 employees’ dissertations were defended (2grand PhD dissertations and 3 PhD dissertations), in 2017 10 employees passed PhD defenses.
There are two senior doctoral councils on thesis defense in psychological and pedagogical sciences and two candidate councils on thesis defense in historical and philological sciences at BSPU.