There is an academic title in Finland called "dosentti" (Finnish) or "docent" (Swedish). However, there is a disagreement in Finland whether it should be translated in English as docent or adjunct professor. Personally, I believe the second option is much better understood globally, and therefore the best translation.

For the purposes of updating my homepage, especially the Latin version, I would like to find a good Latin translation for "dosentti". Ideally, a translation would have precedent in Latin use and be easily understood globally, so that many academics around the would get an idea of what the title entails. I understand if both goals cannot be reached simultaneously. How would you translate the title in Latin, and why?

Pitkäranta's dictionary translates is as docens, but the translations are not justified in any way, so it is hard to judge how fitting it really is. The etymological connection is clear, but that alone is insufficient grounds for translation. The second option that comes to mind is professor adiunctus.

The Finnish adjunct professorship (or whatever you prefer to call it) is not a paid position, but more of an honorary title and sign of affiliation. It gives the permission to supervise PhD students and act in other roles in the PhD defense and evaluation process. It also allows being the principal investigator in some of grants. A person can have several such adjunct positions in different universities. The position is very different from assistant and associate professors, which are regular paid staff. Adjunct professorship in Finland is somewhat similar to habilitation in Germany. The title "docent" in Sweden is similar to the Finnish one if I understand correctly.

(Since the question concerns a Finnish title, let me repeat the main question in Finnish: Miten sanotaan "dosentti" latinaksi? Pitkärannan sanakirja tarjoaa sanaa docens, mutta sanavalintaa ei perustella. Englanniksi titteli on joko "(title of) docent" tai "adjunct professor" riippuen siitä, keneltä kysytään. Nämä kaksi englanninnosta tarjoavat heti latinannoksia docens ja professor adiunctus, muttei ole ihan selvää, kumpi olisi parempi kuvaamaan nykyistä dosentuuria Suomessa, tai olisiko sittenkin jokin muu sana parempi.)

  • I did some search for academic titles and rankings in traditionally Latin speaking medieval universities (Oxford and Cambridge) but could not find anything meaningful. I suggest that route to search for a term, in case you know better what to look for.
    – luchonacho
    Commented Aug 8, 2017 at 8:53
  • @luchonacho Thanks! I don't know if a comparable title ever (including today) existed in Oxbridge. In this particular case there is unlikely to be a canonical translation or a perfect fit, so one just needs to look for analogies and argue what would be most suitable.
    – Joonas Ilmavirta
    Commented Aug 8, 2017 at 8:57


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