Vacancy | PhD studentship in sport psychology at the Norwegian School of Sport Sciences. Closing date September 30, 2017

The Norwegian School of Sport Sciences (NSSS) is a specialized university and serves as the premier education and research institution of sport science in the Nordic countries. Our mission is to educate, investigate and present a broad range of topics within theoretical and practical sport science. Our Bachelor’s degree, Master’s degree and PhD programmes aim to be of great relevance. NSSS has approximately 1300 students and a staff of 220 in five departments, six administrative units and two research centres. The campus and sports facilities are located near Sognsvann in Oslo. For more information on NSSS, visit   

The Department of Coaching and Psychology has a vacant PhD candidate position in the field of sport psychology. The predefined PhD project will focus on mental health in elite sport participants.

The successful candidate will conduct cutting-edge research within sport psychology, examining Mental Health and Elite sports with a focus on youth, current elite athletes, as well as retired athletes. The project includes: 1) a survey to determine the status of mental health among current and retired elite athletes in Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Canada. 2) A longitudinal study of young elite athletes’ mental health development over a 3 year period, and 3) develop and conduct an intervention study among elite level athletes who are “at risk” based on data from the first project.

The predefined project will be under the supervision of Professor Anne Marte Pensgaard and the candidate is expected to work in close collaboration with other PhD candidates within the department, as well as researchers from Sweden, Denmark and Canada.

The PhD candidate will be involved in the planning, implementation and development of lectures on bachelor and master level within the Department of Coaching and Psychology at NSSS. The PhD candidate therefore is required to actively participate in and contribute to the academic community.

The PhD project will lead to multiple publications in relevant peer-reviewed journals. The successful candidate must demonstrate competence in both oral and written English as well as in a Scandinavian language.

Competence requirements and selection process

The applicant must be qualified for a PhD candidate position at NSSS. This entails a master exam (from a two-year master program) /exam from higher education higher degree with minimum grade requirement B or international equivalent. The position is especially relevant for candidates with a Master’s degree in sport psychology or equivalent in a related field.

We seek a determined and motivated candidate with a strong interest in sport psychology, mental health and elite athletes.

The successful candidate should have knowledge and experience in applied sport psychology or clinical work with elite athletes. The successful applicant also needs to demonstrate the ability to work both independently and as part of a research team, with the support of a supervisor.

The position will entail collaboration with various institutions and organizations. Therefore, communication skills and collaborative experience will be emphasized in the evaluation of candidates. Finally, personal skills, in-depth systematic work processes and personal interest/experience for sport organizations will be considered.

Working conditions

Salary is offered according to the Norwegian State pay scale, employment code 1017, PhD research fellow. The appointment will be made according to terms applying to civil servants. The NSSS is a member of the Norwegian State Pension Fund.

The PhD research fellowship period is 4 years. Supervision and teaching duties can be assigned within the limit of 25 % of the full position. Working place is Department of Coaching and Psychology at the NSSS.

NSSS personnel and recruitment policy aims at taking into account the diversity of the Norwegian population to the greatest possible extent.  It is an explicit aim to search for age and gender balance and to recruit competent applicants with minority background. Women and persons with minority background are encouraged to apply.

Applications will be handled according to the relevant regulations as defined in the Norwegian Open Files Act.


Interested applicants are advised to contact the academic community in preparing the application. Further details can be obtained by contacting:

  • Head of department, Professor Marit Sørensen, tel. +47 23 26 24 24,
  • Professor in sport psychology, Anne Marte Pensgaard, tel. +47 41 90 03 65,

Contact administration:

  • Senior adviser Gro Styrmo, tel.+ 47 23 26 20 31, (PhD-studies/admission)
  • Karen-Margrethe Wennevold Heggelund, tel. +47 23 26 20 54, (HR-departement)

Other requirements

Selected candidates will be interviewed.

The public workforce must reflect the diversity of the Norwegian population to the greatest possible extent. NSSS personnel policy objective is to achieve a balanced age and gender mix.

The clause of exemption gives the right, but not the obligation, to refuse access to documents relating to employment in the public service, see Freedom of Information Act § 25. In our recruitment system, applicants will be given the opportunity to request to be exempt from public access, but it is up to the employer to determine whether the request shall be approved or not. If the applicant’s desire to be exempt from public access is not approved by the employer, the applicant will be notified so that he can withdraw the application.

The application

The application with attachments must be submitted to our electronic recruitment system  at latest by September 20.

The Norwegian School of Sport Sciences has an agreement for all employees, aiming to secure rights to research results and intellectual property.

The application must include

  • Application letter
  • CV (summarizing education, positions and academic work)
  • Copies of educational certificates and grades
  • Names, email and telephone number of 2-3 referees (describe relation to applicant)
  • A List of scientific publications
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