With the positive assessment of the doctoral thesis and when all demands of the curriculum have been met a registration for the public defense is possible. This has to be done at the respective StudyServiceCenter.

The public defense consists of a presentation of the central findings followed by a general discussion about the research subject with the examination commission. The exact procedure of the public defense (e.g. duration, mode of presentation etc.) varies from faculty to faculty. We therefore recommend to visit public defenses at the respective faculty prior to the own defense.

The examination committee is assembled by the Director of the Doctoral Study Programme. It consists of at least three persons. Normally the supervisor as well as one of the reviewers are part of the committee. At the end of the presentation each member of the committee awards a grade for the whole examination (1-5). If a majority decision can be achieved, meaning that the majority of the members of the committee award the same grade, then this decision states the grade (e.g. 1,1,2 -> majority decision is 1 = “very good”). If all members award a different grade, then the mean average is awarded (e.g. 1,3,5 -> mean average 1+3+5=9 divided by 3= 3). The grade of the defense is a numeric grade.

After the positively assessed public defense the academic title according to the Curriculum is awarded (PhD or Dr.). The doctoral candidate has the possibility to celebrate his/her completion of the doctoral study with a conferring ceremony. For more information please follow this link.



Defences are open to the public. Usually the dates are announced on the websites of the StudyServiceCenter It is highly recommendable to attend some defences to get an impression of the atmosphere and the procedure of defences at your department.