The doctoral degree procedure

Please ensure that you submit all documents required for registration and admission to the doctoral degree procedure to the Dean’s Office. Incomplete or unreadable applications/registrations will be returned without exception.



Documents and information sheets to download:
Doctoral Degree Agreement (please fill out electronically)
Confidentiality Agreement (german)
Doctoral Candidate`s Guidelines (information on the procedure)
Doctoral Degree Guideline (information on writing the dissertation)
Application for admission to the doctoral degree examination (please fill out electronically)
Template for title page
Declaration of consent of the head of the institution (template)
Submission of obligatory copies

Please note that if you have worked with patient data, a documentation according to Art. 30 DSGVO is required. Here you will find a template as well as the contact details of our data protection representative.


Here you will find all the information you need on the structure of doctoral degrees:

Structure of the “Dr. med./ Dr. med. dent.” doctoral degree procedure

The procedure usually lasts around eight to ten months. We will automatically inform you in writing of the acceptance of your dissertation, required amendments or missing documents. Please understand that, in the majority of cases, it is not possible to answer interim telephone enquiries on the status of the procedure.

1. Registration: In accordance with Section 5 of the Doctoral Degree Regulations, doctoral dissertations must be registered at Kiel University’s Faculty of Medicine when submitting a dissertation subject. You must be enrolled at Kiel University for at least two semesters before you can submit your dissertation and apply for admission to the doctoral degree examination.

2. Application for admission: If your finished dissertation meets the approval of the supervisor, you submit all documents (refer to the Doctoral Candidate’s Guidelines for notes on this) to the Dean’s Office. This then marks the start of your doctoral degree procedure.

3. The examiner’s report: We request the PhD supervisor’s report directly from him/her. It can also, however, be submitted by you. The PhD supervisor must submit recommendations for three second referees to the Dean’s Office. From these, the Chair of the Doctoral Degree Committee will select one second referee. He/she will receive the second copy of your dissertation to produce the second report.

4. The assessment of your doctoral thesis can take some time, but we automatically send referees a reminder after 4 weeks.

5. Doctoral Degree Committee: As soon as both reports are presented, we forward the dissertation onto the Doctoral Degree Committee. The Doctoral Degree Committee deals with all pending dissertations and determines proposed grades on the basis of the submitted reports and the Faculty’s assessment criteria. You will be informed in writing of any required amendments.

6. Display period: The dissertations recommended for acceptance by the Doctoral Degree Committee are then presented to the Faculty Chair of the Doctoral Degree Committee for final acceptance. The dissertations must then be displayed for inspection for a further 14 days.

7. Oral examination/defence of the doctoral thesis (disputation): Following the official completion of the written doctoral degree procedure, the Dean´s Office will inform you in writing of the examination chair person with whom you are to arrange a date for an oral doctoral degree examination. You then organise the examination date yourself.

8. Publication: After passing the oral doctoral degree examination, you must submit a certain number of obligatory copies (publication of the dissertation by the University Library). As soon as the University Library has confirmed the correct submission of your obligatory copies to the Dean’s Office, your Doctoral Degree Certificate will be issued to you.

The doctoral degree procedure is then complete.


You must register your doctoral degree project when you start work on your dissertation. To do this, please submit a copy of the Doctoral Degree Agreement (please fill in electronically) as well as a brief description of the project to the Doctoral Degree Office (in person or by post).

Registration can only be completed if all documents are provided correctly!

Member of staff responsible for matters concerning doctoral degrees:

Birgit Frank
Dekanat der Medizinischen Fakultät
Christian-Albrechts-Platz 4, Raum 808
24118 Kiel

Tel: +49 (0) 431/880-5257
Fax: +49 (0) 431/880-5267

Office hours:  Mon,Tue, Thu 10:00 am – 12:00 noon, Tue, Thu 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm

Admission to doctoral degree programmes

If you have finished your dissertation, you can apply for admission to a doctoral degree programme. You submit your application either in person or by post to the Doctoral Degree Office in the Dean’s Office at the Faculty of Medicine.

In applying for admission, you must submit the following documents to the Doctoral Degree Office:

  • informal application for admission or provisional admission to a doctoral degree programme, stating your desired final qualification, supervisor and the institution in which the dissertation was produced
  • registration form for doctoral candidates
  • proof of having completed a Kiel-based degree programme lasting at least two semesters
  • a copy of the Doctoral Degree Agreement (if not already submitted)
  • an academic résumé
  • a copy of your licence to practise medicine (Approbationsurkunde) (if available)
  • a copy of your state medical/dental examination certificate (for provisional admission: admission to a practical year/evidence you are in your last academic year, for dentistry students/according to the new regulation on licensing doctors (Approbationsordnung, AO): evidence of passing the second part of the state medical examination)
  • a certificate of good conduct issued by the police, no older than six months old (authorised version “0”)
  • two bound copies of the dissertation, as well as the file on CD-R. Attach a clear signed photograph of yourself (passport photo) to the inside of the front cover of each of the two bound copies
  • a copy of a quotable extract from your dissertation or an accepted publication of yours, where you are clearly recognisable as the author or co-author
  • a supervisor’s letter with three recommendations for second referees who are not employed at the same institution as the supervisor
  • agreement of the relevant departmental head of the institution to submit the work as a dissertation to Kiel University's Faculty of Medicine
  • the head of the institution's declaration of agreement to the doctoral candidate’s use of the institution’s academic or clinical facilities

Provisional admission to doctoral degree programmes

The doctoral degree procedure can be accelerated by way of provisional admission to a doctoral degree programme.
You can apply for provisional admission if you have gained admission to a practical year or you have passed the second part of the state medical examination in accordance with the new AO and you have fulfilled all other admission requirements (see Doctoral Candidate’s Information Sheet). This rule also applies to dentistry students, who must provide evidence that they are currently in their last year of study when applying.

The dissertation assessment procedure is initiated on provisional admission, but the oral examination can only be taken after passing the final examination (or state examination in the case of dentistry). Provisional admission expires if the applicant obtains permanent admission or does not pass the second part of the state examination in medicine (or dental medicine); on the day that it is ascertained that the second part of the state examination in medicine (or dental medicine) has not been passed, or at the latest 2 years after provisional admission is awarded.

In accordance with the new AO, the following rule applies: provisional admission expires if replaced by permanent admission or if the applicant does not pass the third part of the state examination in medicine (or dental medicine); on the day that it is ascertained that the third part of the state examination in medicine (or dental medicine) has not been passed, or at the latest 2 years after provisional admission is awarded.

If you have completed your degree abroad

...please note that foreign degrees must first be assessed for their equivalence to German university degrees before you can be accepted as a doctoral candidate. As, depending on the country in question, the Zentralstelle für Ausländisches Bildungswesen (ZAB, Central Office for Foreign Education) in Bonn may take several weeks to do this, you should submit certified copies of the relevant documents to them as early as possible.

Oral examination

After the Faculty of Medicine has accepted your dissertation as your doctoral thesis, the Doctoral Degree Committee has examined the work and no objection has been raised within two weeks, you will receive written notification of the oral doctoral examination (defence of the doctoral thesis/disputation).

The defence of the doctoral thesis/disputation is an in-depth interview in which you are required to answer critical questions put to you by examiners on the subject and results of your dissertation.

Issuing the certificate

If all the components of the doctoral degree have been completed in accordance with the Doctoral Degree Regulations, the Dean’s Office of the Faculty of Medicine will send you your PhD Certificate by post.