AAU logo


Chronology of the PhD study


When applying for enrollment it is required that you fill out the application for enrollment template. Please ensure that all required appendix and signatures are present. The template can be downloaded here.

Preparation of a PhD plan

No later than 2 months after enrollment the PhD student must upload a PhD plan for approval through the PhD manager portal. The PhD plan is prepared by the PhD student in co-operation with the principal supervisor.
This provisional outline of the PhD programme must satisfy the requirements of the general programme for the particular field of research in which the applicant wishes to participate. It is a precondition that research in the chosen area takes place within the Faculty. The PhD study plan must follow the template found here.

Preparation of an updated PhD plan

Before the completion of the first year of the PhD program (after 12 months), an updated PhD must be uploaded throuh the PhD manager system.
The updated PhD plan must comprise a description of the academic progress and a precise indication of the undertakings during the remainder of the program. The updated PhD study plan must follow the template found here. Comments from the status seminar must be incorporated into the plan.

Evaluation of the PhD study 

According to the Ministerial Order, the Doctoral School must ensure that the PhD student is making progress according to her/his approved PhD plan. This requirement is met by the progress reports through PhD manager. The evaluation is conducted automatically through the system and all parties will be informed when an evaluation is pending.


If the performance during a study program is not satisfactory, this must be declared to the Doctoral School trough the progress reports. This declaration must be accompanied by an explanatory statement. Together with the principal supervisor, the PhD student prepares a detailed plan of action in order to ensure that her/his performance becomes satisfactory after a 3 month period. Subsequently, it is the duty of the principal supervisor to judge whether the performance progress has been re-established. If the PhD student is unable to recover lost ground, the registration of the student will be cancelled at the end of the 3 month period.

Completion of the PhD study program

The PhD program is completed with the preparation of a PhD thesis. The thesis is submitted to the Faculty and must be publicly presented and defended. The thesis and its defence must be evaluated by an assessment committee. The appointment of the assessment committee must take place before the PhD thesis is submitted to the Faculty. Before the appointment of the assessment committee, the principal supervisor must fill out a declaration that all other components of the program have been successfully completed.

The assessment committee is appointed by the Dean upon recommendation from the PhD Board and consists of 3 members, of which 2 must be extramural. Supervisors do not participate in the assessment committee with voting rights, but the principal supervisor should nevertheless always participate in the committee's evaluation. The assessment committee performs its recommendation in two stages. Prior to the assessment committee deciding on the date for the public defence, it must have formed an opinion as to whether the thesis qualifies as suitable for defence. Should the assessment committee view the thesis negatively, the assessment committee shall state in the recommendation whether the PhD thesis may be resubmitted in a revised version. After the defence of the thesis, the assessment committee sends a general evaluation of the thesis and its defence to the department as well as a recommendation as to whether the degree should be awarded or not.

After the Academic Council has awarded the PhD degree, the secretariat will prepare a PhD diploma in Danish and English. The diploma will contain a description of the programme, the title of the thesis, the composition of the assessment committee and other relevant information.

See this illustration of a standard PhD study.

Contact Information

If you have any questions regarding the PhD study, terms of employment, courses and the like, please contact us:

E-mail: aauphd@adm.aau.dk

Phone: 9940 9638

Niels Jernes Vej 10, 1st floor

9220 Aalborg East