Preliminary examiners must identify the merits of the dissertation manuscript, propose revisions and improvements to the author, and submit a reasoned written statement to the faculty, either proposing that the doctoral candidate be granted permission to defend the dissertation in a public examination or that the permission should be denied. In most cases, each preliminary examiner will submit their own statement, but if they so wish, they may also submit a single joint statement.
The faculty council consults the preliminary examiners’ statements to decide whether the doctoral candidate can be granted permission to defend their dissertation in a public examination. If an article included in a dissertation has not yet been accepted for publication, the preliminary examiners should pay particular attention to the quality of this article in their statement. In their statements, preliminary examiners may outline or summarise the revisions and additions that they require. The preliminary examiner is not, however, in the position of a dissertation supervisor.
Once the preliminary examiners have been appointed, the presenting official of the faculty informs the preliminary examiners and the doctoral candidate of the decision and sends the dissertation manuscript with examination instructions to the preliminary examiners. The preliminary examiners must, within two months of accepting the assignment, submit a written statement, either jointly or separately, explicitly recommending that the doctoral candidate be granted or denied permission to defend the dissertation in a public examination. In some faculties, preliminary examiners may require that some parts of the manuscript be revised even before they give their statement. In this case, your faculty’s postgraduate services will provide you with more detailed instructions on how to proceed.
If, due to differences of opinion between the preliminary examiners or serious deficiencies or mistakes discovered in the dissertation, the preliminary examination does not lead to a statement recommending that the doctoral candidate be granted permission for the public defence of the dissertation, the preliminary examination process will be discontinued. The faculty council will be notified of the discontinuation of the preliminary examination.