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Defending your thesis

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Defending your thesis is the final stage of your PhD. It is an intense and sometimes stressful moment. Consequently, it is essential to plan ahead and follow the steps and deadlines outlined below to make sure that everything goes as smoothly as possible. The Admissions Office is there to help you all along the way, from organising your defense right up to receiving your degree.

A thesis defense must be announced and finalised on ADUM at least 8 weeks before the date of the defense.

IMPORTANT: The time periods when the university is closed cannot be taken into account when scheduling the defense:

  • 4 weeks in August
  • 2 weeks in December

The steps described below also apply to cotutelle thesis defenses (double degrees).

Documents to download

For further information regarding your thesis defense, refer to the following documents:


Defense notification and jury composition

You must declare your intention to defend your thesis. To do so, visit your ADUM account and click on the link "I would like to make my defense request". You must provide specific information regarding the jury, which is formed according to the rules for thesis jury composition set out in the 2016 decree. Please note that additional rules may apply in your doctoral school.

You must complete the entire procedure in order for your defense notification to be taken into account and submitted to your thesis supervisor for approval. Consequently:

  • all the ADUM tabs must be validated
  • your thesis dissertation must be submitted
  • your thesis release approval must be completed, signed and submitted

Your thesis supervisor must check the details concerning the jury members before validating, in particular their positions/ranks, institutions and each member's accreditation to supervise research (HDR) before approving the defense jury. Thesis supervisors can make any necessary changes themselves. Before approving, they should also check to make sure the jury complies with the doctoral school's prerequisites.

Following the thesis supervisor's approval, the Graduate Research School examines the jury's compliance with the requirements of your specific doctoral school.

The jury's expertise cannot take place without your thesis supervisor's approval. As a result, your thesis supervisor must examine and approve your jury at least 8 weeks before the defense date, taking into account the time periods when the University is closed (see below).   


At least 4 weeks are given to reviewers to read and comment on your thesis.

You can submit a modified PDF version for reviewers and jury members no later than 6 weeks before your defense date  – "PDF thesis submission" tab

Visit the page devoted to writing your thesis.

If no further submissions are made and after the cover page has been checked, the initial dissertation will be sent to the reviewers, indicating the return date for their defense reviews.


In compliance with regulations, reviewers must return their reviews at least 14 days before the defense date. 

The University of Bordeaux president will sign the decision authorising the defense only after receiving favourable reviews and after the doctoral school director's approval. The reviews will be sent to you, your thesis supervisor and all the jury members.

If the reviews are not returned by the deadline, the defense will not be authorised by the University of Bordeaux.


As soon as you receive the president's authorisation, you and your thesis supervisor will be informed that the defense is authorised. You can then download the documents related to your defense from your ADUM account. 


Your thesis supervisor does not take part in the jury deliberations.

Pursuant to Article L612-7 of the French Educational Code, in institutions of higher education and research, PhD students are required to take an oath of scientific integrity when they defend their theses.

According to the terms of the decree, the oath is taken individually during the defense, once the PhD student has been declared admitted.

Since 1 January 2023, this stage of the defense has been recorded in the official report.

In the presence of my peers.
With the completion of my PhD in [research field], in my quest for knowledge, I have carried out demanding research, demonstrated intellectual rigour, ethical reflection, and respect for the principles of scientific integrity. As I pursue my professional career, whatever my chosen field, I pledge, to the greatest of my ability, to continue to maintain integrity in my relationship to knowledge, in my methods and in my results.

The PhD oath


The thesis supervisor, or the jury chair:

  • submits all the original documents, hand-signed by all the jury members, to the thesis defense officer within 15 days
  • must send the defense report within one month


You must submit your thesis in order to receive the academic title of doctor.

Submission can be done as soon as you receive the email from the thesis defense officer (and within no more than three months if corrections are requested by the jury).

As soon as you receive the official defense documents, you will be informed of the procedures for your final submission on ADUM.

The submission must be made within a month at most (for archiving and/or publication).

If corrections are requested, you have a maximum of 3 months to make the submission.
The jury chair must approve the corrections before submission and will be informed of the corrections directly by the thesis defense officer.

As soon as the final submission has been validated by the Documentation Department, a certificate of achievement will be available in your ADUM account.

Please note: if no submission is made, the dissertation submitted at the time of your defense notification will be automatically sent to theses.fr.


There are four options for releasing your thesis. You must determine the option chosen in the release notice when you declare your jury on ADUM:

  1. Immediate release online
  2. Release after the period of confidentiality defined by the institution. The dissertation is totally inaccessible including to the academic community, during the period of confidentiality, which may not exceed 25 years
  3. Release delayed until after an embargo determined by you but accessible to the academic community, for a maximum of 5 years, non-renewable
  4. Refusal of release determined by you but accessible to the academic community

Confidentiality is the only means of protecting your dissertation.

For further details about release procedures, click here.



    Thesis Defense Officer


  • Christelle ROCCA

    Thesis Defense Officer


  • Nathalie AUGOYARD

    Admissions & Defense - Department Head

    Jury Expertise & Regulations