All faculty-funded PhD candidates are expected to hand in a pilot study for evaluation, together with a table of contents for the dissertation and a time schedule for its completion. For PhD candidates with a full-time employment contract (1.0 FTE), the pilot study is normally due in the 6th month; for PhD candidates with a part-time employment contract (0.8 FTE), the pilot study is normally due in the 9th month. The month in which the evaluation will take place is stipulated in the PhD candidate’s employment contract.
It should be emphasized that the assessment takes place solely on the basis of the pilot study, the table of contents and the time schedule; any other activities – including those undertaken in the context of a larger project of which the PhD candidate forms part – are not part of the assessment. The main supervisor (promotor) is responsible for ensuring the PhD candidate has enough time to complete the pilot study. The PhD candidate should not teach in the period in which the pilot study has to be written and other activities should be kept to a minimum or should be directly related to the pilot study. The PhD candidate and the supervisors should make a plan for the completion of the pilot study – including deadlines and feedback moments – as soon as possible after the beginning of the contract. The completion of the pilot study should be the absolute priority for both the PhD candidate and the supervisors.