Structure of the Ph.D. degree course

The Ph.D. degree course at the University of St.Gallen is comprised of coursework, the research stage and graduation.

Your coursework encompasses at least 12 and a maximum of 36 credits, depending on the programme 

  • Research proposal: evidence of the thesis objective, methodological approach and preliminary research work 
  • Colloquium on the research proposal: the thesis project and reasons for the approach are presented 
  • Length: courses and research proposal within four semesters

Research stage 

  • Seminars: thesis-related seminars and thesis colloquia with a maximum of 24 credits, depending on the programme 
  • Ph.D. thesis: must be an independent research project in which the Ph.D. student demonstrates his or her in-depth expertise and a grasp of scientific methods. A cumulative thesis is also possible, whereby the student should take account varying requirements depending on the programme. 
  • Defence of thesis: to demonstrate that the requirements of the Ph.D. thesis have been met
  • Length: within ten semesters from the start of your Ph.D. studies.

The Senate awards you the title of Ph.D. once you have passed the examinations and your Ph.D. thesis has been accepted. The President of the university presents the Ph.D. title at a ceremony. Attendance is mandatory.

The dates of the graduation ceremony can be found on the right under more on the topic.

A detailed description of Ph.D. degrees is listed in the Award Regulations for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy. Once you have received your Ph.D. certificate you are officially permitted to bear the title accordingly.