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Commencing the Doctoral Examination Procedure

The doctoral examination procedure commences as soon you submit your dissertation to the office and the Doctoral Committee appoints the Examination Committee and the reviewers.

Submit the following documents

To apply for the commencement of the doctoral examination procedure, you must submit the following documents listed in Section 12 of the regulations for a doctoral degree to the faculty’s Doctoral Committee office:*


  •  Application to commence a doctoral examination procedure,
  • Original or certified copy of the supervision agreement
  • Four printed copies of the dissertation and one digital copy
  • Ten copies of an academic synopsis
  • Four copies of a curriculum vitae in tabular form that focuses specifically on scholarly development
  • Four copies of a list of published or forthcoming manuscripts or other scholarly achievements, including any assessments, statements, and reviews
  • A certified copy of the final grade certificate in accordance with Section 8
  • A declaration that this work has not been submitted to any other institution of higher education and that it was prepared independently and exclusively with the specified funds
  • Evidence of teaching experience
  • Evidence of participation in one or more one-semester doctoral seminars
  • Evidence of enrollment as a doctoral candidate
  • A police clearance certificate if the applicant was de-registered more than three months previously and was not in public or ecclesiastical service
  • A copy of a summary in German that is understandable to laypeople
  • For binational doctoral studies, evidence of the cooperative agreement approved by the Faculty Council for collaborative doctoral studies between the University of Potsdam and the international partner university

*Please be mindful of the deadline for agenda items for the corresponding meeting of the Examination Committee.

What happens after the procedure commences?

After the procedure commences, each reviewer will be sent a copy of the dissertation. They will have eight weeks to submit their reviews.

Once the last review is submitted, if they are all positive, the chair of the Examination Committee is tasked with scheduling the oral defense. As the doctoral candidate, you will be informed that your dissertation has been accepted and your oral defense is being scheduled.

You can find information about the structure of an oral defense in Section 14 of the regulations for a doctoral degree.