Doctoral Degree Regulations

Before and during a PhD track, the PhD Candidate and their Supervisor or Supervisors are required to make sure that the Doctoral Degree Regulations are observed.

Doctoral Degree Regulations (pdf)

The PhD Regulations of Utrecht University include a number of legal stipulations as they have been codified in the Dutch Higher Education and Research Act (Dutch name: Wet op het hoger onderwijs en wetenschappelijk onderzoek, WHW), as well as a number of conditions that have been set by the Utrecht University Board for the Conferral of Doctoral Degrees.

The PhD Regulations stipulate, among other things, who has access to the PhD Defence, how the Primary Supervisors and Secondary Supervisors are appointed, how the doctoral thesis is required to come about and how the Assessment Committee is to be assembled. As of 1 January 2018, some Associate Professors can also be appointed as Supervisors. Please read the conditions (docx), which are based on the VSNU guidelines (pdf).

In order to safeguard the quality of the PhD programme, the Executive Board has set the minimal requirements of the quality assurance system (pdf). Every Graduate School has a cyclic quality-assurance system that enables the Board of Studies to monitor and continuously improve the quality of the PhD programme.

Special arrangement for joint doctorates

Utrecht University offers a special arrangement for joint doctorates. It is possible to set up a joint doctorate in collaboration with one or more foreign universities. Such a joint doctorate requires permission from the Board for the Conferral of Doctoral Degrees, applied for well before the start of the PhD track.

The arrangement for joint doctorates (pdf) stipulates how to request permission for a joint doctorate within Utrecht University and which requirements the joint doctorate has to meet.

League of European Research Universities (LERU)

Utrecht University is a member of the League of European Research Universities (LERU). The LERU has spoken out about the added value of joint doctorates: Proposal for jointly awarded PhD (pdf).