In response to the need for more PhD holders within Uganda, Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST) and St. Augustine International University University (SAIU) developed a joint institutional capacity building programme focusing on PhD training by research. This programme will be later expanded to include other Universities in Uganda that are interested in joint PhD programmes where quality and other issues related to PhD training are jointly monitored. It will also be expanded to PhD training by coursework and research where individual partnering universities can design their individual PhDs.
The aim of the programme is to recruit at least 100 PhD students over a three-year period. As of 1st November 2016, the disciplines of the joint PhD programmes MUST and SAIU had a total of 30 PhD holders who can effectively supervise 100 PhD students at an average rate of three PhD students per PhD holder. MUST and SAIU have staff who are PhD students in their final year who will join this programme by next year. SAIU plans to recruit more PhD holders this year and next year as its student population increases. These PhD holders will also join the joint PhD programmes as supervisors. The supervisors shall comprise PhD holders from the partnering universities. The students shall come from all over the East African region but priority shall be given to staff of universities and research institutions. Initially all the students shall register at MUST and will receive certification from MUST on completion.
Scope of the PhD Programe
The joint PhD programme shall initially cover areas of medicine and biological sciences. At MUST the following academic units will host the PhD students and PhD holders participating in the programme: Faculty of Medicine. At SAIU, the PhD students and PhD holders participating in the program shall be hosted in the College of Medicine,Health and Life Sciences. PhD holders in the relevant disciplines shall be the main supervisors and other PhD holders within and outside the country may serve as co-supervisors.
Minimum graduation requirements
To qualify for graduation, a PhD student shall spend a minimum of three (3) years on the PhD programme and shall also publish at least 2 peer reviewed (refereed) publications in either a journal or published book out of the PhD research. The other requirements are stipulated in the Graduate Student Handbook.
The main supervisor shall be a PhD holder in the same discipline and with at least two years of research experience after the PhD and should have published at least three papers in either referenced journals or as book chapters in a book with an ISBN number published by a recognized publisher. The detailed guidelines on supervision as indicated in the Graduate Student Handbook shall apply. Flexibility may be possible beyond the guidelines specified by the handbook on a case by case basis.