Public defence

The faculty is responsible for organizing the public defense of the candidate's thesis.

The Chair of the evaluation committee and the faculty's PhD coordinator shall first agree upon their responsibilities and division of labour. The Chair of the evaluation committee appoints a time for the public defense, together with the rest of the committee, the PhD candidate, the supervisor(s), the head of the department and the Dean of the faculty. He/she is responsible for contacting committee members, while the PhD coordinator is usually responsible for the practical arrangements related to the implementation of the public defence. In the checklist for the Chair of the evaluation committee, a list of tasks are drawn up in connection with the public defence, the monitoring of the evaluation committee and the distribution of tasks between the evaluation committee and the PhD coordinator.

The time and place of the public defence shall be published together with the subject of the trial lecture and information about the publication of the thesis, a minimum of ten working days before the defence. The public defence will be chaired by the Dean of the faculty or a person authorised by the Dean. First, the Chair of the defence will give a brief explanation of the procedures relating to the submission and evaluation of the doctoral thesis. The PhD candidate will then explain the purpose and findings of the doctoral research project. The first opposing speaker begins the questioning of the PhD candidate and the second opposing speaker concludes the questioning. The faculty may eventually decide on a different division of labour between the opponents or between the candidate and the first opponent. After both opposing speakers have concluded their questioning, members of the audience will have the opportunity to comment. Those members of the audience who wish to participate in the deliberations ex auditorio must give notice to the Chair within the time determined and announced at the start of the public defence.

If the committee deems the thesis and the defence satisfactory, this is announced immediately at the venue, upon conclusion of the defence. The committee then submits a report to the PhD coordinator, on a stipulated form, where it assesses the dissertation, the trial lecture and the defence, and concludes whether the defense has been approved or not.

For further information on the course of the public defence, see Procedures for the Course of Public Defence on the UiS website. The trial lecture and public defence are referred to in Regulations § 20 The Doctoral Examination and § 21 Approval of Doctoral Examination. External committee members' fees, travel expenses and accommodation are paid for by the faculty. For the PhD candidate, expenses for printing, travel costs, and the events on the day of the public defence are tax deductible. See the section on the Norwegian Tax Administration website regarding the deduction of costs relating to a doctorate.

If the faculty does not approve the trial lecture(s) or the public defence, the PhD candidate will be given another chance to defend his thesis after 6 months. Upon approval of the thesis, the PhD coordinator prepares a case presentation for the University Board, which awards the doctoral degree. The secretariat of the Board sends both the degree certificate and a letter with the Board's decision to the doctor. In addition, a diploma is awarded to the candidate during the university's annual celebration in October.