The Order of 25 May 2016 established a national framework for doctoral training; it specifies proper doctoral training conditions, procedures for selecting Thesis Reviewers and Defence Committee members, and the manner in which theses shall be defended.
The Marine & Coastal Sciences Doctoral School provides Thesis Supervisors and PhD students with a guide entitled “The Thesis Defence Committee for the administratively-challenged”, to assist in the selection of Thesis Reviewers and Defence Committee members.
Choosing Thesis Reviewers
The PhD student’s work is first examined by at least 2 thesis reviewers (rapporteurs in French), designated by the institution head and holding HDR accreditation to direct research. The reviewers are not involved in the PhD student’s work.
The committee’s composition must be gender-balanced (equal male/female representation). At least half of the committee must comprise professors or similar personnel, in accordance with Article 6 of Decree no. 92-70 relative to the CNU (National Council of Universities) and Article 5 of Decree no. 87-31 for the health disciplines, or teachers of equivalent rank not falling under the French Ministry of Higher Education.
The committee members choose from among their number a President and, if need be, a Thesis Defence Reporter (rapporteur). The President must be a professor (or holder of a similar post) or a teacher of equivalent rank.
For joint degrees awarded by multiple accredited institutions, the committee is designated by the concerned institutions’ heads, according to the conditions stipulated by the agreement mentioned in Article 5 of the present Order.
The European Label
This label is awarded in addition to the Doctorate when the 4 following preconditions are met:
- Permission is granted for a thesis defence in view of reports written by at least two professors at higher education institutions in two separate European countries other than that in which the thesis is defended.
- At least one member of the Thesis Defence Committee must belong to a higher education institution in a European country other than that in which the thesis is defended.
- A portion of the defence must be carried out in a national European language other than that or those of the country in which the thesis is defended.
- The doctorate must have been partially prepared during a stay of at least one quarter (3 months) in another European Union country.
If you meet the above pre-conditions for this label, contact the administrative office of your registration institution.
Submitting your thesis paper
The PhD student must submit his/her thesis paper one month prior to the scheduled date for the thesis defence, to the doctoral department of the concerned higher education institution.
The PhD student must furnish his/her thesis paper in digital format, according to the procedure established by his/her institution.
The student must also furnish paper copies to the Thesis Defence Committee members, upon their request.
The PhD student subsequently receives a certificate attesting to the proper submission of his/her thesis paper comprising a French summary and an English summary, as well as a list of key words. A thesis defence can only be held if the thesis paper has been duly submitted.
The submitted manuscript must include all general information necessary for the paper’s description, management, dissemination and archiving, according to the TEF (French Electronic Theses) guidelines.
If at the end of the thesis defence, the Thesis Defence Committee requests that corrections be made to the paper, the new doctorate holder has 3 months in which to submit an electronic version of his/her duly corrected thesis.
Each institution implements its own particular procedure for thesis paper submissions:
- For Université de Bretagne Occidentale, submission information is available via the Documentation Department website; for further information, contact: depot [dot] theseuniv-brest [dot] fr.
- For Université de Nantes, contact the registrar’s office (service de scolarité).
- For Université d’Angers, contact the Digital Student Services Desk at: soutenancecontact [dot] univ-angers [dot] fr.
- For Le Mans Université, contact Catherine [dot] Petitbonuniv-lemans [dot] fr