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Chapter 6. Thesis and degree


6.1 Thesis

6.2 Licentiate degree

6.3 PhD degree

6.4 Name of degree

6.5 Degree certificate

6.7 Doctoral conferment ceremony


6.1 Thesis

§1  A doctoral or licentiate thesis at the Institute of Technology may only be presented if it is published in a list of theses resolved by the faculty not less than three term weeks before presentation. From 1 January 2007 only the following lists may be used

·   for doctoral theses:
Linköping studies in science and technology, Dissertations

·   for licentiate theses:
Linköping studies in science and technology, Licentiate Thesis

The thesis can also appear in other lists (department lists, research institute lists etc). However it can appear in other Swedish thesis lists only in the case of joint degree.

§2  Theses are to be printed in S5 format (165x242 mm). Theses are to be structured either as a homogenous, continuous scientific work (a monograph) or as a number of scientific essays together with an introduction to the area (compilation thesis). In the case of compilation theses, the PhD student’s work and possible contributions by other co-authors are to be clearly discernible. Theses are to be written in English, Swedish or another Scandinavian language unless otherwise authorised by the faculty.  In the case of the Institute of Technology theses are normally written in English.  

§3  The author should refrain from messages (either in words or images) that are not relevant to the content of the thesis, i.e. what the referee has to assess. Material that is clearly offensive or insulting that is not relevant to the content of the thesis may not be published in the faculty thesis list. The use of copyright protected material without the holder’s permission is not permitted either. 

Compilation theses normally contain parts where copyright has been transferred to another party by agreement. In such cases, the first page of such parts, or the printed in page (see below) is to contain information on the copyright holder and the wording “Reprinted with permission” or equivalent. Bear in mind that illustrations in general are protected by copyright law and cannot be used without permission. Information on the originator can be given in association with the work or on the printed in page.

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§4  Unless otherwise agreed by the faculty, the front cover of the thesis is to contain the following information only

·   the full title of the thesis including any sub title,

·   author’s name,

·   information on the thesis list and sequence number; for doctoral theses “Linköping studies in science and technology. Dissertations, No NNN”; this is to appear at the upper edge of the front cover,

·   “place of publication” and print year.

The front cover can also contain information on the author’s organisational affiliation (department, unit/group or research discipline). The front cover should also contain the Institute of Technology logotype, which consists of the university seal and the wording “Linköping University, Institute of Technology” The seal is to be positioned in the lower part of the front cover and ought to be 25–35 mm in diameter. One of the university bluecolour, black or white is to be used depending on the background (the Swedish version can also be used). Other logotypes/seals (other seat of learning, department, research institute etc) may not appear on the front cover of a thesis unless otherwise agreed by the faculty. These can be printed on the back cover, inside cover or title page (page 1) instead. The front cover can include an illustration (drawing, photography etc) of relevance to the content of the thesis.

Licentiate and doctoral theses are to have both a series number and ISBN number. The ISBN for the thesis lists and sequence in the thesis list are obtained from the university library. Seal/logotypes in eps-format can be downloaded from the Linköping university image bank.

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§5  The thesis is to contain a separate sheet, so-called ‘spikblad’ with information of relevance for the public announcement of the presentation. The spikblad is to contain

·   the full title of the thesis,

·   the name of the respondent,

·   date, time and place (room, building, town) for the presentation,  

·   research discipline and if the thesis is for a technology, economics or philosophy degree,

·   thesis abstract,

·   the thesis list and sequences numbers, ISBN and ISSN numbers.

The spikblad can also contain information on the opponent, examination board, supervisors, department, graduate school, etc. The spikblad is to be in Swedish except for the title, abstract and keywords that are usually in English. The spikblad is in A5 format (148x210 mm) and inserted loose in the thesis immediately after the front cover. If the thesis is published in electronic format by the LiU E-Press the spikblad is to include a URL to the thesis. 

Electronic publishing

The Institute of Technology encourages electronic publishing of both licentiate and doctoral theses via LiU E-Press

§ 6 The thesis, regardless of language, should include an abstract in English including English title. If the thesis is written in Swedish, there shall be a Swedish version of the abstract. All theses must also include a Swedish popular scientific summary of the thesis. The popular scientific summary is placed immediately after the abstract.

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6.2 Licentiate degree

§8  The faculty board regulates the generall syllabus for every major subject. The study syllabus structure, the rules for qualification, admission and selection are the same, irrespective of the ultimate goal of licentiate or PhD degree.

§9  Before the grade (pass or fail) is set on the licentiate thesis this is to have been defended at a public seminar in which an external opponent and appointed examiner is to participate. The opponent is normally to have a PhD. This mandatory seminar is, unless otherwise agreed by the dean, to be held during the acedemic year, and is to be announced no later than three weeks in advance, however during the academic year.

§10  The PhD students intending to defend their licentiate thesis are to notify their department of this on a form that can be downloaded from the website. Application is to be made no later than two months before the seminar. Please see form for more detailed instructions. A copy of the decision should be sent to the secretary of the Borad of PhD studies no later than three weeks before the seminar.  

§11  Grades for licentiate thesis including defense of this is normally set by an appointed examiner. The head of the department appoints an examiner and an opponent of the licentiate seminar. If the head of the department is one of the respondent's supervisors, the examiner and the opponent  shall be appointed by chairman of the Board of PhD studies. Anyone who has been supervisor of the respondent, or that is in another bias possion, can not be appointed as examiner or opponent. At least one of the examiner and the opponent must come from another university. The examiner and the opponent should have a PhD degree. The chairman of the Board of PhD studies may decide on exceptions to this. For a pass grade, the PhD student should demonstrate that he/she meets the learning outcomes for the licentiate degree.

§12 The licentiate thesis should be published in Linköping University Electronic Press at least three weeks before the intended seminary. The seminary will be advertised in Liu's calendar, and information about it is sent out under similar practices at disputations.

A printed edition of the licentiate thesis will be available two weeks before the presentation. T hree printed copies are to be delivered to the  university library. The PhD student will retain five copies, and a copy is to be archived at the Department.  [FUNP13-03, decision 2013-05-27]

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6.3 PhD degree

§13  The subject for a PhD thesis is set by the main supervisor in consultation with the PhD student. The thesis is to be of sufficiently high quality to be able to be published in its entirety in an international scientific periodical of good standard.


A preliminary review of the thesis

§14  A preliminary review of the thesis is mandatory for all thesis at the Faculty of Science and Engineering from 1 July 2017. The review is performed by examination committee members, on behalf of the Board of PhD Studies. The examination committee members will, in connection with the appointment, get information by the faculty about the preview. The statements will only declare whether the reviewers believe that the thesis is of quality such that it can be presented and defended at a public defense, and is therefore no guarantee that the thesis and its defense will be passed. The statement is not be motivate, unless it is negative, then a brief motivation is demanded. The examination board members send their statements to the Board of PhD Studies, which then notifies the main supervisor. An almost finished version (including all the constituent manuscripts and the essential part of the work) of the thesis should be send to the examination board no later than four weeks before nailing (public anouncement). The PhD student sends an electronic version of the manuscript for all regular examination board members with a copy to the Board of PhD Studies (fun.lith@liu.se).

§15  The general rule is that the PhD student should contact the printing office who is going to print the thesis well in advance before the public defence. The costs for the thesis are covered by the department. PhD theses are printed in a minimum of 110 copies or minimum 70 in the case the thesis is made available electronically at LiU E-Press.

§16  The printed thesis is to be circulated as below at least three weeks before the public defence, however, during the academic year:

·   40 copies are sent to the university library. The library issues a receipt on delivery. The number of copies can be reduced to 10 if the thesis is published electronically by LiU E-Press.

·   At least 70 copies are to be sent to the PhD student’s department, of which 10 copies are for the opponent, examining committee and exhibition. The  PhD student keeps 10 copies. If the thesis is not published electronically by LiU E-Press around 10 copies are to be sent to fellow departments in Sweden. The remaining copies are to be made available to the general public before and during the presentation. The department issues a receipt on delivery.

§17  The dean/assistant dean is to be contacted in good time to sign two copies of the thesis. The student is to nail one of these copies to the LiTH oak board outside lecture hall C2 in house C not later than three weeks before the public defence, however during the academic year. In the case of PhD students at ITN, Campus Norrköping, the exhibition copy is to be pinned in the library, Kåkenhus.

In association with this, the PhD student also forwards the following to the Dean's Office (TFK):

·   the receipt from library

·   the receipt from department

·   a copy of the thesis signed by the dean/assistant dean

·   additional copy of the thesis.

Hammer and nails are available at the Dean's Office (TFK), Building Origo, or the Head of Department, ITN, if nailing is done in Norrköping.

It is the responsibility of the department to publish the public defence in the university events list. The university publishes a popular science summary of the thesis at www.liu.se/forskning and the wording for this is sent in digital format to the secretary of the Board of PhD studies  in association with nailing. 

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The following rules apply when applying to hold a public defence of a PhD thesis at the Institute of Technology at Linköping University. A standard form for this can be downloaded from the website.

§18  The main supervisor is to notify the Board of PhD studies in writing of the wish to hold a public defence. He/she is also to propose an opponent, members of the examinination board and a chairman of the public defence. Full post and email address details of the persons concerned are to be included in the application. 

§19  The application is to include a proposal for the name of the degree. If the proposed name differs from normal practice (sec Ch 6, §28), the main supervisor is to provide reasons for this.  The title of the thesis is always to be included together with the student’s academic title (e.g. Tech Lic.). The subject in which the student is to hold the public defence is also to be set out. 

§20  A summary of the content of the thesis is to be attached with the application, and where appropriate a list of the publications including the candidate’s contributions to each publication (also applies to monographs). A transcript of credits obtained is also to be attached (printout from Ladok, “UT90”), and where appropriate, a copy of the agreement on electronic publishing.

§21  The application is to reach the secretary of the Board of PhD studies during the academic year and no later than Three months before the public defence. It can be submitted electronically (Word or pdf) and its receiving is confirmed. The final date for submitting the application about the thesis defence during the first three weeks of the autumn semester is 1 May.

§22  The main supervisor is summoned to a meeting of the Board of PhD studies (or to a delegation meeting with the board chairman) to discuss the case and to make a brief presentation of the content of the thesis and other facts that can be of interest to the board. The choice of faculty opponent and examination board is to be justified and  the Board of PhD studies (or the chairman) then resolve on this. The Board of PhD studies circulates extracts of the minutes to all concerned.

§23  The public defence is to be held during the academic year at a time and place determined by the Rector. The venue for the public defence is booked by the department. If specific reasons apply, the dean can agree to a shorter exhibition time. The public defence can only be held outside the academic year if there are exceptional circumstances.

§24   A PhD thesis is to be defended at a public defence. The public defence ceremony is headed by a chairman. There is also an opponent at the public defence. The chairman and the opponent are appointed by the Board of PhD studies.

The chairman opens the public defence by welcoming everyone present. The chairman then presents the respondent and the title of the thesis, faculty opponent and the members of the examination board. The chairman also presents the order the public defence will take. The floor is then handed to the respondent who reports any possible corrections due to printing errors and/or other corrections in the thesis. The content of the thesis is then presented. This part normally takes 15-45 minutes and several orders are possible: 

Example 1: The chairman hands the floor to the opponent, who provides a summary and a personal interpretation of the content of the thesis. The respondent is then given the opportunity to comment on the summary.

Example 2: The chairman hands the floor to the respondent, who presents the thesis. 

This is then followed by a debate in which the opponent raises issues and viewpoints on methods and results. This is the central part of the public defence ceremony and the respondent’s ability to respond to the questions raised forms the basis of grading. The examination board is then given the opportunity to ask questions. (This debate normally takes 1-2 hours.)

At the end of this debate, the floor is open, and the audience has the right to ask questions to the respondent in the order determined by the chairman. The respondent is to be given the opportunity to respond to every contribution to the debate. Finally, the chairman thanks everyone involved and declares the public defence closed. The examination board then immediately convenes.

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§25  The PhD thesis shall be given the grade pass or fail. In so doing the examination board is to take into account the content of the thesis and its defence. In that connection, the examining committee is to determine whether the respondent, in the thesis and defence of it, has demonstrated the capability to make a substantial contribution to the development of knowledge through his or her own research. The respondent is also to have demonstrated familiarity with the methods of the research area, capacity for scientific analysis and synthesis and to independent critical inspection and evaluation of new and complex phenomena, questions and situations, and demonstrated the capacity to identify the need for further knowledge. The respondent is also to have shown the capacity to be able to identify and formulate questions critically, independently and with scientific precision, and to plan and pursue research using adequate methods and to inspect and evaluate such work. A thesis co-authored by two or more individuals may be approved as a doctoral thesis provided the separate contributions of the authors can be clearly discerned.

§26  The grade of the  PhD thesis is determined by the examination board made up of three or five members appointed by the Board of PhD studies. Members of the  examination board are normally to have docent level qualifications or higher. The majority of members are to come from a department other than the student’s unless specific reasons apply. At least one of the members of the  examination board is to be appointed from the teaching staff within another faculty board area of responsibility; unless specific reasons apply. One or more deputies can be appointed. 

§27  The examination board appoints a chairman from amongst its members. The examination board has a quorum when all members are present. The board’s decision shall be a majority decision. The faculty opponent has the right to attend the  examination board's meeting and to participate in discussions but not in any decision. The main supervisor is to be present at the meeting with the examination board and participate in the discussions but not in any decision.

§28  The examination board normally convenes immediately after the public defence. If the thesis is awarded a pass by the examination board, the reasons for such grade may not be reported in the protocol. The same applies if an individual member opposes the decision. If the thesis is failed, the reasons are to be documented. The same applies if an individual member opposes the decision. If the thesis is failed, the supervisor is also permitted to make a specific statement.

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6.4 Name of degree

§29  The names of degrees in Swedish at PhD level at the Institute of Technology consist of a prefix (technology, philosophy or economics) and the degree itself (doctorate or licentiate). The degree certificate also includes information on the major subject the student was admitted into.

The PhD student applies to be awarded one of the prefixes: technology, philosophy or economics in association with the application for the public defence. To be permitted to use the prefix technology, the PhD student must have studied in the area of science and technology and has a broader understanding outside his/hir own major subject in their intire education. 

§30 The English names of licentiate degrees are: Degree of Licentiate of Engineering, Degree of Licentiate of Economics or Degree of Licentiate of Philosophy respectively. PhDs are always called Degree of Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in English regardless of the prefix in Swedish.  

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6.5  Degree certificate

§31   After the mandatory seminar at the department and provided the requirements for a licentiate degree are otherwise satisfied, the student can apply for a degree certificate. 

Application is made using a specific form, available from the Graduation Office. An application must be attached by the following: certification from signed by the main supervisor, birth certificates (personbevis) and a transcript from Ladok (UT 90), showing all completed courses have been registered.

§31  After the public defence, the supervisor sends the protocol to the Registrar. When all requirements for the PhD degree are fullfilled, the student can apply for a degree certificate. 

Application is made using a specific form, available from the  Graduation Office. An application must be accompanied by the following:  birth certificates (personbevis) and a transcript from Ladok (UT 90), showing all completed courses and other possible examinations have been registered.


6.7 Doctoral conferment ceremony

All PhD students having done their diploma before a certain date are invited to participate in the upcoming ceremony. Participation is voluntary. Everyone participating in the ceremony will receive a special diploma.

For more information about the ceremony are available on <www.liu.se/om-liu/akademiska-hogtider>

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Last updated: Fri Sep 01 13:16:40 CEST 2017