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Graduate Centre

Submission, disputation and the process to publication

Submission of the doctoral thesis

The main doctoral degree process is opened with the submission of the doctoral thesis.

The following documents have to be submitted to the Doctoral Degree Representative.

  • Three (printed) and bound or stapled copies of your doctoral thesis
  • In the case of a thesis by publication, copies of all individual contributions already published, including the abstract. The documents each have to contain a curriculum vitae showing your academic career (completed degree programmes, academic activities, etc.).
  • An assurance stating that you have prepared the doctoral thesis yourself and have named all the resources you have used for this purpose. This legally binding assurance is vital concerning the prosecution of plagiarism cases.
  • A proposal as to who should be the first assessor for this doctoral thesis
  • A statement that you have not yet submitted the thesis in another doctoral degree process
  • A statement that you have not yet published any parts of the thesis elsewhere
  • Details of where you have already published parts of the thesis by naming references:
  • of the printed
  • or the submitted articles in the case of a thesis by publication
  • A current certificate of enrolment
  • A list of your research publications
  • In case the Doctoral Degree Regulations of 2010 apply to you, you have to submit a proposal naming the second assessor (the second assessor is usually from an external institution).
  • The following Doctoral Degree Committee may also deviate from a proposal made, if necessary.
  • Evidence that you have fulfilled the conditions imposed in the context of an entrance examination for doctoral studies

After the doctoral thesis has been submitted

The Doctoral Degree Representative of the faculties shall establish the Doctoral Committee within four weeks.

This committee is composed of:

  • five professors
  • five private lecturers
  • This include your supervisor (2010 Doctoral Degree Regulations: your second supervisor)

At least three of the members have to belong to the respective or at least a neighbouring subject area. One member of this Examination Board will be called upon from another university.

Disputation (oral examination)

The disputation, or the thesis defence, is the oral examination part of the doctoral degree examination and is generally public or open to the public at the University of Vechta. The date is set in consultation with the doctoral candidate. The disputation consists of two parts and lasts between 90 and 120 minutes.

In the first part, the doctoral candidates share their work in a presentation. This presentation should last approx. 30 minutes and include:

  • the research question
  • objectives
  • methods
  • presentation of the results of the work

The presentation is then followed by a discussion covering different topics of the doctoral subject, based on the doctoral thesis. Here, the doctoral candidates should show that they can theoretically justify their research results, defend them against critical objections and deal with opposing views in a theoretically well-founded manner within the framework of overarching questions of the subject area.

By the way: The doctoral degree regulations of the University of Vechta stipulate that you must be enrolled at the university for the duration of your doctorate, i.e. from the time you are accepted as a doctoral candidate until the time of your disputation (oral examination).

Final grade

summa cum laude
(as top mark "with distinction")
magna cum laude
("very good")
cum laude

The oral grade and the final grade are determined and announced directly after the disputation. Upon request, a certificate of the examination performance will be issued.

Please note: This certificate is not the doctoral degree certificate as per Section 14 subsection 2 of the Doctoral Degree Regulations. The doctoral degree certificate will only be handed out after the thesis has been published. Before receiving the doctoral degree certificate, the doctoral candidates have no right to use the doctoral degree (“Dr.”). The designations "Dr. des." and "Dr. cand." are also not permitted as per the Doctoral Degree Regulations and may not be used.

*By the way: After a doctoral student's exmatriculation, the e-mail address remains active for 1 year until it is permanently deleted. If you still belong to the university and would also like to be part of the Graduate Centre, we recommend that you register as an alumni after exmatriculation: