Doctorate/PhD at the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics

Have you gained a top-level degree in mathematics, physics or meteorology and are full of curiosity and the desire to learn more? Are you interested in an area of research and want to discover something new there? Then you are in the right place at the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics!

FOR Questions...

... for topics or matters concerning supervision of a doctorate, please contact the professors at the institutes concerned.

... for the administrative procedure, please follow steps 1-7 at the bottom of this page or please contact the doctoral office of our faculty in the morning in writing or by telephone. You can also find the contact details at the bottom of this page.



If there are problems concerning compliance with the supervision agreement, discussions are held immediately between the parties, in order to restore observance of the agreement. The ombudsperson of the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics, Prof. Dr. Olaf Lechtenfeld, and the Arbitration Board of the Graduate Academy may be addressed for advice and support in such cases.



Doctorate (Promotion) ⇔ entire procedure

Thesis (Dissertation) ⇔ written work

Thesis Defence (Disputation) ⇔ oral presentation

„Good Scientific Practice for Scientific Papers and Theses in Physics"
Arranging an Appointment

Your preferred date for your exam/thesis defence must be arranged in good time with the PhD Office!

Doctoral Examination Process

The most important formal steps in a PhD process are summarized below. Please note that this is merely a guide. The Doctoral Regulation alone are legally binding.The relevant documents can be found at each step.

  • Step 1: Admission as a PhD candidate, matriculation

    Requirements with regard to content are a topic and a supervisor. Please consult the institute or graduate support webpages for possible topics and speak to potential supervisors directly.

    Candidates wish to take a doctoral degree must have been admitted as PhD students for at least three months before submitting their thesis. Candidates are asked to register as PhD student at Leibniz Universität Hannover.

    documents required for applying for admission, and application forms:

  • Step 2: Submission of Thesis and Application of take a Doctorate

    On application, and subject to allrequirements being met, the faculty opens the doctoral examination process. At the same time, referees and a examining board are appointed.

    To speed the process, the supervisor should suggest referees, members of the examining board and possible dates and rooms for the oral exam or thesis defence.

  • Step 3: Inspection of thesis and Referees' Reports

    The referees' reports should generally be available six weeks after opening of the PhD process. The thesis and the reports are then put out for at least two weeks, usually during the lecture period,for inspection by those members of the faculty entitled to supervise PhDs. The thesis is deemed to have been accepted if all referees have recommended its acceptance and if no objection to the acceptance of the work has been made within the inspection period.

    The thesis may be accepted conditionally. In that case, the chief examiner will contact the candidate and inform him or her of these conditions and further procedures.

  • Step 4: Setting a date for the Exam or Thesis Defence

    After the thesis has been accepted, the Dean sets and announced a time and place for the exam or the thesis. There must be at least five working days between announcement and the actual exam/thesis defence.

    The period between the submission of the thesis and the earliest possible date of the exam/thesis defence essentially depends on the time taken for the receipt of the referees' reports. Supervisors should thus alsways discuss possible dates with the referees. The reports are made available and the exam/thesis defence takes place usually during the lecture period.

    Please note: the preferred date of the exam/thesis defence must be arranged in good time with the PhD Office!

  • Step 5: Exam/Thesis Defence

    Directly after the oral exam/thesis defence, the head of the exam committee conveys the result to the candidate and issues a provisional certificate on the results.

  • Step 6: Publication of the Doctoral Thesis

    Within one year of passing the oral exam/thesis defence the candidate must publish the authorized final version of the doctoral thesis. Details on publishing doctoral theses can be found on the TIB webpages. As a rule within two weeks of the thesis being handed in, the TIB issues confirmation of the publication of the thesis and sends this to the faculty.

  • Step 7: Doctorate/PhD

    The Doctorate/PhD is conferred by the handing over or delivery of the PhD certificate. This is possible only after the publication of the thesis and the delivery of the declaration given below. It is only after this that the doctoral candidate has the right to bear the title Dr. rer. nat.. You receive your PhD certificate at the PhD Office, subject to all necessary documents being available.

  • International Use of Certificates

    Doctoral certificates are issued in German and English. Sometimes, however, an internationally valid certification of the German-language original is also required. Such certification usually takes the form of an apostille or legalisation.  


    For the issue of an apostille you need an advance certification issued by the University Administration. Please inform us together with your application for the admission as doctoral candidate if you need advance certification. This can generally be handed over to you together with your PhD certificate.

    With this advance certification you can receive an apostille (fee required) at the Police Department Hannover:

    Polizeidirektion Hannover
    Frau Przyklenk

    Marienstraße 34-36

    30171 Hannover

    tel: 0511/109 2219
    opening hours: Mon-Fri 9.00-12.00 and Tues & Thurs 14.00-15.30

Your Contact

Brigitte Weskamp
Appelstraße 11/11a
30167 Hannover
Brigitte Weskamp
Appelstraße 11/11a
30167 Hannover