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Dissertation and Defence

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Your dissertation may be cumulative consisting of several papers or a monograph. One of the papers should be single-authored. (Please note: it does not necessarily have to be published.)

Dissertation Submission

Upon completing your dissertation, you must hand in the “Application for PhD examination“ essentially stating that you are ready for the final steps, i.e. that you have finished your doctoral study programme and completed your dissertation to be submitted for review.

Since no personal consultation hours can be offered at present, the procedure has changed. Please upload all documents (including the application) to Docfile and send them in paper form to the doctoral office. Doctoral certificates must be submitted in the original. Applicants according to the Doctoral Regulations 2015 only need to send Bachelor's and Master's certificates and diplomas if they were not available at the time of application for admission to the doctoral programme. Doctoral certificates must be submitted in the original. You will be notified when the application has been reviewed and you will be admitted to the doctoral examination. Then send the copies of the dissertation to your reviewers. Ask them beforehand whether a bound copy and/or a digital version is required.

For the submission of the application in December, a large number of preliminary enquiries have been received, so that a processing time of up to four weeks can be expected. You can therefore send your dissertation copies to your examiners in advance, stating that they will be sent with reservations as you have not yet been admitted to the examination.

You find the list of necessary document and forms here:

See also Section 6 of the Doctoral Regulations. These documents have to be handed in to the Central Doctoral Office to Mrs. Mundorf.

Defence (oral exam)

The defence involves defending the scientific findings of your dissertation in front of three professors and to discuss it in a broader context.

  • Oral examinations can be held at any time.
  • Reports and registration for the defence must be received 4 weeks in advance (deadline).

Award of Degree (Dr. rer. pol.)

Doctoral students are awarded their degree during a public ceremony. Parents, partners, friends and colleagues are welcome guests at doctoral ceremonies.

Please note: You must have published your work to be entitled to bear the title Dr. rer. pol.