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Austria, Germany, and Switzerland

In Germany, Austria, and the German-speaking part of Switzerland, the most commo
n doctoral degrees in Natural Sciences are the following:
Dr. rer. nat.: Doctor rerum naturalium, literally "Doctor of the things of n
Dr. rer. medic.: Doctor rerum medicarum, Doctor of medical sciences
Dr. sc. nat.: Doktor der Naturwissenschaften, Doctor of Natural Sciences
Dr. sc. nat. ETH: Doktor der Naturwissenschaften ETH, Doctor of Natural Scie
nces, awarded by ETH Zurich, Switzerland.
Dr. phil. nat.: Doctor philosophiae naturalis, used only by Goethe Universit
y Frankfurt instead of Dr. rer. nat.
Dr.-Ing.: Doktor der Ingenieurwissenschaften (Doctor of Engineering), awarde
d by German technical universities.
Dr. mont.: Doctor rerum montanarum, awarded by the Montanuniversitt Leoben in
stead of Dr. techn.
Dr. techn.: Doctor technicae, awarded by Austrian technical universities.
In these countries there are some related doctoral degrees with very similar nam
es, these are the:
Dr.sc.agr.: Doctor scientiarum agrariarum, Doctor of Agricultural science
Dr.sc.hum.: Doctor scientiarum humanarum, Doctor of Humanistic Sciences
Dr.sc.inf.: Doctor scientiarum informaticarum, Doctor of Science in Informat
Dr.sc.inf.med.: Doctor scientiarum informaticarum medic, Doctor of Science in
Medical Informatics
Dr.sc.inf.biomed.: Doctor scientiarum informaticarum biomedic, Doctor of Scie
nce in Biomedical Informatics
Dr.sc.math.: Doctor scientiarum mathematicarum, Doctor of Mathematics
Dr.scient.med.: Doctor scienti medic, Doctor of Medical Sciences
Dr.sc.mus.: Doctor scientiae musicae, Doctor of Musicology
Dr.sc.oec.: Doctor scientiarum oeconomicarum, Doctor of Economics
Dr.sc.pol.: Doctor scientiarum politicarum, Doctor of Political Sciences
Dr.sc.soc.: Doctor scientiae socialis, Doctor of Social Sciences
All these doctoral degrees are equivalent to the Ph.D. or Sc.D. of the American
system. Until German Reunification, universities in East Germany also awarded th
e Dr.Sc. However, the East German Dr.Sc. was not equivalent to the Ph.D. since i
t was adopted to replace the German Habilitation and therefore was equivalent to
this higher-level qualification. After reunification the Habilitation was reint
roduced at universities in Eastern Germany.
The procedure of habilitation is normally required to receive officially the "ve
nia docendi", which entitles the candidate to lecture at universities (Privatdoz
ent, for men, or Privatdozentin, for women). The academic degree after the succe
ssful habilitation is e.g. Dr.rer.nat.habil., by adding the suffix "habil." to t
he earlier received Doctors degree.
In Switzerland, the Dr. sc. is a doctoral degree awarded only by the two Swiss F
ederal Institutes of Technology (EPFL and ETHZ),[1] the University of Fribourg a
nd the Department of Informatics of the University of Zurich.[2] The Swiss Dr. s
c., like the D.Sc. in the US, is equivalent to the Ph.D. It is earned with the a
pproval of a committee on the basis of original research, publications, and exte
nsive applied professional contributions and is awarded in doctoral level scienc
e and technology programs. Since 2004 the Dr. sc. is the only doctoral degree aw
arded by the ETH Zurich. The cole polytechnique fdrale de Lausanne awards the degre
e Docteur s sciences, abbreviated Dr s sc.[3] The title is translated into English
as PhD.[4]

In Poland "Doctor of Sciences" (pl doktor nauk) is the equivalent of Ph.D. degre
es in Poland are similar to degrees awarded in Germany.
Doctorate is always translated into English as Ph.D. (or PhD). Just like in Germ
any and Austria habilitation (doktor habilitowany or dr hab.) in Poland is the hig
her academic qualification, sometimes translated as D.Sc. (or DSc). The highest
scientific degree in Poland is professorship (profesor), which is called a scien
tific title of professor.
The United Kingdom, Ireland, India and the Commonwealth
In Ireland, the United Kingdom and the countries of the Commonwealth, such as In
dia (in the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay), the degree of Doctor of Sci
ence is one of the Higher Doctorates. In some older universities it typically ha
s precedence after Divinity, Laws or Civil Law, Medicine, and Letters, and above
Music. The degree is conferred on a member of the university who has a proven r
ecord of internationally recognised scholarship. A candidate for the degree will
usually be required to submit a selection of their publications to the board of
the appropriate faculty, which will decide if the candidate merits this accolad
e. It should be noted that the award or obtaining of a regular PhD degree is not
in any way a pre-requisite for obtaining a DSc, as, for example, it can happen
in the sciences that an academic who does a lot of publishing can be awarded a D
Sc without ever having done a PhD degree.
The degree is only exceptionally and rarely awarded to a scholar under the age o
f forty.[citation needed] However Marie Stopes obtained hers at the age of 25,[5
] Alexander Aitken at the age of 31 (without first obtaining a PhD), and Kevin W
arwick had been awarded two by the time he was 40.[6]
The first University to admit an individual to this degree was the University of
London in 1860.[7] In 1893 Maria Ogilvie was the first woman to receive this de
gree. However, the University of London ceased awarding the degree more than ten
years ago.[8]
In former times the doctorate in science was regarded as a greater distinction t
han a professorial chair and hence a professor who was also a D.Sc. would be kno
wn as Doctor. The Doctor of Science may also be awarded as an honorary degree, t
hat is, given to individuals who have made extensive contributions to a particul
ar field and not for specific academic accomplishments. It is usual to signify t
his by adding D.Sc. h.c. (for honoris causa).
Other European Union countries
In the Czech Republic and Slovakia "Doctor of Sciences" (DrSc. behind the name),
established in 1953, is equivalent to the degree of Doctor of Science in the se
nse in which the D.Sc. is used in the Commonwealth. It is the highest academic q
ualification, different from both Ph.D. and PhDr. titles. In the Czech Republic,
DrSc. is not awarded since 2001; instead, since 2006, a "Doctor of Sciences" de
gree (DSc. behind the name) is awarded not by universities but by the Academy of
Sciences of the Czech Republic mostly for research in the field of natural or f
ormal science. In Slovakia, "Doctor of Sciences" (Dr.Sc.) is awarded by the Slov
ak Academy of Sciences.
In Hungary, "Doctor of Sciences" (D.Sc.) is awarded by the Hungarian Academy of
In the former Yugoslavia, (Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro,
Slovenia, Macedonia),[9] title doktor nauka or doktor znanosti (literally "docto
r of science") is used in a much broader sense than D.Sc., simply referring to a
field of academic study
from art history (doktor znanosti/nauka povijesti umjet

nosti), philosophy (doktor znanosti/nauka filozofije), and literary studies (dok

tor znanosti/nauka knji evnosti) to hard sciences such as molecular biology (dokto
r znanosti/nauka molekularne biologije). It is therefore formally recognized as
a Ph.D. degree.
In Finland, most doctoral degrees awarded in the fields of natural sciences, tec
hnology and economics are termed D.Sc. degrees in English, with a suffix indicat
ing the field of study. However, there is no translation of the term Doctor of S
cience to Finnish. For example, the proper translation for the doctorate in tech
nology (tekniikan tohtori) would be D.Sc. (Tech.), whereas a doctorate in econom
ics and business administration (kauppatieteiden tohtori) would be translated as
D.Sc. (Econ.). When conversing or writing in English, the prefix Dr. may be use
d to address a holder of a doctoral degree awarded in Finland