The PhD dissertation defence will require an examination committee. This includes the student's supervisory committee, an internal/external examiner, an external examiner, and a defence Chair. The student must not contact the examiners and defence Chair.

Internal/external examiner: faculty member at the student's home university, outside of the student's home department. The supervisor provides a list of recommended individuals to the Graduate Studies Associate Chair. The Associate Chair contacts the potential internal/external examiner.

External examiner: faculty member from another university with a PhD and expertise in the dissertation topic. The supervisor provides a list of recommended individuals to the Graduate Studies Associate Chair. The Associate Chair contacts the potential external examiner.

Defence Chair: faculty member from the student's home university, outside of the student's home department. The Arts Graduate Office selects and contacts them.

Public display period: period of 28 business days before the defence date when the dissertation is on public display in the Graduate Studies office. Please note that this period does not include holidays and weekends.

Black-out period: period of time when a PhD defence or oral exam must not be scheduled. Additionally, the black-out period cannot be counted as part of public display period. The 2019 black-out periods are: the last week of the spring term (August 26 - 30, 2019) and the winter holiday break (December 23, 2019 - January 1, 2020).

 

Timeline

38 business days (~8 weeks) before defence date:

The supervisor provides the Graduate Coordinator with the information and documents below. Please ensure that the defence date and public display period do not overlap with the black-out period.

  • Internal/external examiner's contact info
  • External examiner's contact info & CV
  • Supervisory committee's names
  • PhD candidate's name
  • Preferred defence date(s)
  • Electronic copy of student's final dissertation

28 business days (~6 weeks) before defence date:

The Graduate Coordinator will confirm the dissertation defence time and location, and send the above information to the graduate office.

1 month before the end of the academic term:

The student should apply to graduate on Quest and follow the convocation checklist.


After the defence:

The examination committee will make a decision and inform the student whether or not they need to make revisions to their dissertation. 


1 week before the end of the academic term:

Once the Graduate Studies office confirms that the dissertation has been accepted, the student should submit it on UW Space before the end of the academic term in order to graduate on time.


If the student wishes to have physical copies of their dissertation, they may go to the W Store to print and bind it.