Graduation (doctor)

the graduation is an academic examination, which the capability to independent research at a scientific university or a comparable mechanism prove (acquisition of the doctor degree).

Table of contents


in the time of Luther for example, when theology was still the determining discipline at the universities, defended one his doctor theses with the Disputation and became then Doctor theologiae. ItsOne put theses out in the “neighbouring” university towns, as to the Wittenberger Schlosskirchtür. This “black board” was the invitation to the Disputationen. Who wanted to come, it was added to disputieren, whereby one was particularly loaded always, in order with the candidate. This Disputationen also mostly becamepublished, interestingly enough not of the candidate, but of the examiner. To the fact it is interesting that whole reformation history would probably be not conceivable, if Luther had been not constantly loaded to any Disputationen, with which he its teachings to specify learned. However one also invited to Disputationen, ifone already doctor was. Disputatio the rule was and in later time by a graduation procedure was only replaced. The designation „graduation “can be derived from latin promotio and can with collection or collection to an honour place be shown.

The doctor “is the second highest academic degree, after the Habilitation. Purpose of the graduation is it to occupy the ability to the scientific work by the example of the treatment of a special field; it „entitled “to independent research - like that the graduation a condition for it is over for instance independent at the German research council,Project requests place to be able. With the graduation the scientific training applies in principle as final. Contrary to the graduation prove the Habilitation then the ability to represent the entire field of activity on high level in teachings and research.

The graduation is in Germany in principle a conditionfor the Habilitation. Depending upon Act concerning universities of the countries a graduation is in all rule a condition for the occupation as a professor or first as a junior professor. In Austria one understands the solemn award of the doctor degree, not an examination or the doctorate study by graduation onlyeven.

graduation procedures


the graduation is introduced, after the graduate student submitted a doctor work (thesis). This work is a scientific research work, which an independently furnished, with new scientific realizations locking research achievement documents. After acceptance of the thesis by the faculty and/or. via one of it used commission and the obtainment of appraisals takes place a verbal examination (Rigorosum) or a scientific dispute (Disputation), which has often (however by no means always) the topic of the thesis to the article. This verbal defense of a doctor work is public in all rule and becomes before university teachers and if necessary. Personalities of the public life put down.

The graduation procedure is final after the total evaluation; usuallythe graduate student is however only then entitled to lead the designation „Dr. “after the Promovend proved the publication of its thesis. Some universities permit that, which locked the procedure, but did not publish the thesis yet, until further notice the designation „Dr. of the. to lead “.

In the connection to the designation graduation also the terms thesis, doctor work, doctor diploma, doctor letter, doctor examination and doctor writing are determined.

To the procedure must be referred to the individual graduation orders of the respective faculties. In the context of the current Bologna process also a statement became that“doctoral studies” met. It is not only with the creation of common systems for uniform study conclusions (Bachelor degrees and/or. Master degree) to count but beyond that a uniform doctor degree. To be waiting however the Bologna follow-up conference in mountains remains.


the expiration of a graduation procedure becomes inthe test order of the responsible specialist area fixed. The procedure is partially very different thereby from university to university and from subject to subject. Usually it contains the following steps:

  1. Suitable study conclusion (usually good to very good exam),
  2. if necessary further conditions for qualification, e.g.Seminar lights, language proofs (Latinum, Graecum etc.) etc.
  3. Choice of a responsible person (doctor father),
  4. registration of the graduation project at the graduation committee of a faculty at a University of,
  5. acceptance as a graduation student,
  6. preparation of the thesis. The average duration varies substantially depending upon field. During physician their thesis frequently stillduring the study to make, invest lawyers know as a rule 1-2 years. In scientific subjects and in the Geisteswissenschaften however, in particular with research and experience-annoying topics are not, also periods of five years rarity. The finished work covers depending upon field between 25 and several hundredsPages. Perhaps in this time are (depending upon university, technical and chair):
    • To visit graduate student seminars (“upper min acres”)
    • to publish specialized publications.
  7. Submit the thesis at the graduation committee,
  8. production of 2 -3 appraisals by the Opponenten,
  9. the verbal one and public defense (Disputation) and/or Rigorosum,
  10. preparationthe doctor work for scientific publication,
  11. obtainment of pressure permission (imprimatur), if not yet given (with theological work possibly still another church approval must be caught up [Nihil generic term-did, lat. “Nothing stands to publication including delivery of obligation copies in
  12. the way”]) , with the libraries. Some Faculties permit in the meantime also the publication to the thesis by publication in the Internet.

Particularly in the scientific subjects quite often a “cumulative thesis” is provided. Here partial aspects of the own research work in independent manuscripts are summarized and alone or with Koautoren in examined technical periodicals (Reviewed PAPER) publishes. The individual publications, which are to naturally stand in a sense connection, are afterwards cumulated, i.e. as individual chapters in summary and as thesis submitted. The necessary total number of the manuscripts and the portion of the chapters already published are specified by the respective graduation order. ThatGraduate student arrived by cumulating to a more clearly arranged expiration of graduation, learns the methodology of publishing and can instead of an individual work with small spreading value several publications show, which are far more strongly noticed by the professional colleagues.

Usually no training meetings belong to the graduation. If one howeverattained a doctorate in a subject, which one did not study before, is that different. Then one completes a “graduation study” parallel to the thesis, which consists of usual training meetings.


in Germany

the total evaluation of the graduation achievement takes place - regionally differently and alsodifferent meanings - frequent with latin notes:

  • summa cum laude - “with highest praise”
in most graduation orders the work with that is called latin designation summa cum laude “outstanding achievement” and expressed numerically as “0.5”.
  • magna cum laude - “with large praise”
designationas an achievement particularly which can be recognized; numeric indication with “1.0”.
  • cum laude - “with praise”
designation as an achievement exceeding the average; numeric indication with “2.0”.
  • - “sufficiently” designation
would guess/advise as an achievement, which corresponds to average requirements; numeric indication with “3.0”.
  • non would guess/advise or more insufficienter - “insufficiently” (fallen through)
designation than , a altogether no longer useful achievement suffering from substantial lack; numeric indication with “4.0”.

Latin the Notenbezeichungen usually only by such universities are used, which call themselves universities. For example becomes at the Rheinisch Westfäli technical university(RWTH) in Aachen the best note through “with honor” marks.

in Austria

in Austria study-terminal examinations are judged asexisted “or” with honor existed “(the latter, if all partial examinations not more badly than at least with “well” and thoseHalf with “very well” were judged). In addition the award of the doctorate knows Praesidentis additionally as “Promotio sub auspiciis rei publicae” (dt. “Graduation under the Auspizien of the Federal President”) takes place, what the highest honor to the acquisition of the doctor degree equal comes.

Additionally the thesis in Austria can a descriptor receive, as far as this plans the respective graduation order. This descriptor is indicated within the recommendation of the consultants for the scientific achievement. Also for this there is latin notes:

  • opus eximium - “extraordinary work” (only rarely one assigns and is not intended also in some graduation orders)with numeric indication with “0.7”.
  • opus valde laudabile - “very good [praise-worth] work” with numeric indication with “1.0”.
  • opus laudabile - “good [praise-worth] work” with numeric indication with “2.0”.
  • opus idoneum - “satisfying work” with numeric indication with “3.0”.

in Hungary

in Hungary the graduation distinguished since 1993 with the four designations summa cum laude, cum laude, would guess/advise, more insufficienter.


  • dock And. Jürgens, how publish I mean doctor work?, Publishing house Ludwig, Kiel 2005. To ISBN 3-937719-28-8

see also

Web on the left of


  > German to English > (Machine translated into English)