- Instructions for the Submission and Grading of Doctoral Dissertations
- Permission for public examination
- Appointing the opponent and setting the time for the public defence
- Grading of Dissertations by the Academic Council
- Application for Degree Certificate
- Instructions for Pre-examiners and Opponents
Instructions for the Submission and Grading of Doctoral Dissertations
These instructions are principally aimed at doctoral candidates, but they also contain useful information for Degree Supervisors.
At Hanken School of Economics, the Academic Council appoints pre-examiners and opponents, grants permission for public examinations and approves doctoral dissertations. Each student's Degree Supervisor administers matters with the Academic Council and guarantees that they are dealt with in compliance with the Government Decree and Hanken's regulations. She/he is also responsible for the Academic Council members receiving all the material necessary for their discussions and decisions, including the dissertation manuscript.
1) Discuss the time of submission with your Dissertation and Degree Supervisor.
2) Submit your application for permission to have your dissertation pre-examined. The relevant form is available below in Word and PDF formats. Hand the application in to Registrar Helen Malmsten, in Helsinki, and in Vaasa to Kristina Wallin, who will forward the dissertation to the Registrar.
The application should be accompanied by:
- A Transcript of Records, in one (1) copy (to prove that you have the right to study and that you are registered).
- The dissertation manuscript: one (1) copy for each pre-examiner (i.e. usually two (2) copies). The manuscripts may be in metal ring binders, to make them easier for the pre-examiners to handle.
Article dissertations should further include:
- Authorisations by co-authors of the articles to be included in the dissertation, in one (1) copy for each manuscript.
- A statement detailing the authors' contributions, unless specified in the text or in the co-authors' authorisations, in one (1) copy for each manuscript.
- For articles that have been published or that have been accepted for publishing authorization for printing from the publishing house.
One set of the above-mentioned documents should be made available to the Degree Supervisor. He/she will decide when your application should be submitted, to enable him/her to hand in the submission to the Academic Council's Secretary in accordance with the timetable stipulated by the Council (usually on the Monday of the week preceding the Academic Council's meeting). The manuscripts and the application have to be at the Registry Office in good time, at least a week before the meeting.
In addition to the printed versions, dissertation manuscripts should be submitted on Monday the week before the meeting at 4pm at the latest in electronic format to the address
email@example.com. The file should be named "student's surname_date_pre-examination", and should be in PDF, RTF or Word format. The manuscript is then transferred to a Web page with password access, enabling the Academic Council's members to study it before the meeting.
3) The Degree Supervisor proposes the pre-examiners of your manuscript to the Academic Council. The appointment criteria are detailed in the Degree Regulations 2005. You are entitled to see the proposal before it is submitted. You then inform the supervisor whether you wish to make any comments or not. If you do, hand in a separate written statement to the Academic Council with a copy to the supervisor.
4) The Academic Council considers the proposal concerning the selection of pre-examiners. The Degree Supervisor informs you of the decision.
5) The Registrar forwards the submitted copies of the manuscript to the pre-examiners. In order to guarantee total objectivity, you are not to contact them yourself, nor to send them your manuscript. The pre-examiners need to be left in peace to do their work. You must not send them any updated versions of the manuscript. The time allocated to the pre-examiners to complete their examination and submit their assessment of the manuscript is two (2) months. The assessment usually concludes with one of the following recommendations:
a) The manuscript is acceptable for publication and public examination.
b) The manuscript is acceptable, provided that the corrections detailed in the assessment are made. This will be verified by the Thesis Supervisor.
c) The manuscript contains major shortcomings. After the necessary corrections, the manuscript should be returned to the pre-examiners for a new evaluation.
d) The manuscript is not acceptable for publication and public examination.
The pre-examiners send their assessments to the Registrar, who forwards them to the Degree Supervisor, who will in turn inform you.
6) After receipt of all assessments, the dissertation manuscript is adjusted in accordance with the pre-examiners' recommendations. It is sent for language revision (information about this will be supplied by your Degree Supervisor or by the Department), is given its final form, and is ready for publication.
Permission for public examination
7) When the dissertation has been language-checked and is ready for publication, the Degree Supervisor proposes to the Academic Council that permission for public examination be granted. The proposal is based on the assessments. You have the right to see them, as well as the supervisor's proposal. If you have no objections, you should inform the supervisor accordingly. If you think an assessment is unjustified, submit a well-reasoned statement (NB: Do not comment directly on the proposal for examination, but focus on the arguments presented by the expert in support of his/her proposal).
8) Before the Academic Council's meeting deciding about permission for public examination, the manuscript should be made available to the Academic Council by sending it to doctoral.studies (at) hanken.fi on Monday the week before the meeting at
4 pm at the latest. The file should be named "student's surname_date_publicexamination" and should be in PDF, RTF or Word format. The manuscript is then put on a Web page with password access, enabling the Academic Council's members to study it.
9) The Academic Council decides whether or not to grant permission for public examination. The Degree Supervisor will inform you about the outcome, and so will, officially, the Registrar, who will also supply instructions concerning requests for rectification.
Please note that after the Academic Council has granted permission for public examination, only technical changes may be made to the manuscript (e.g. corrections of spelling mistakes and modifications of the document setup). There must be no changes in content, since the manuscript would then no longer be the one accepted for public examination by the Academic Council. The Degree Supervisor should not propose the granting of permission for public examination before the manuscript is in its final form.
10) When the Academic Council has given permission for the public examination of a doctoral dissertation, you shall submit your manuscript for publication, either to the Hanken series "Ekonomi och Samhälle" (Economics and Society), or to some other publishing house.
If you are going to publish your manuscript in the Hankens series you are to follow the instructions in the information package available on the
library's web pages. The manuscript should be submitted in time so that it is available at least ten (10) days before the public examination (please see the information package for more details). It is advisable to contact the Publication Secretary in good time and to follow her instructions, otherwise you may risk the publication being delayed and the public defence having to be postponed.
Hanken's publishing unit, like other publishers, requires that you enclose authorisations by any co-authors and publishers of printed scientific papers to be included in the dissertation.
Appointing the opponent and setting the time for the public defence
The Academic Council's meeting granting permission for public examination may, if necessary, appoint the opponent and fix the time, or the Academic Council could discuss these matters at a later meeting.
11) An opponent/opponents will be appointed for the examination of a doctoral dissertation manuscript (the criteria for eligibility are detailed in the Degree Regulations 2005). The Degree Supervisor puts forward a proposal naming the opponent(s), which you are entitled to see in advance. The procedure is the same as for the proposal concerning the pre-examiners: you should either inform the Degree Supervisor that you have no objections, or hand in a separate reasoned statement (one for the Registrar, one for the supervisor). You are not to be in contact with your opponent(s) before the public defence, all contacts being handled by the supervisor or the Registrar.
12) The Academic Council further determines the time of the public defence and appoints the Custos. The Degree Supervisor acts as Custos, or alternatively proposes somebody else. Since the Custos prepares the approval of the dissertation to the Academic Council, he/she has to hold a position at Hanken, and in practice usually has a professorship in the doctoral candidate's main subject. In this case, too, you are entitled to see the proposal in advance and you should then either inform the Degree Supervisor that you agree with it or submit a separate reasoned statement. The time of the public defence must be determined with a view to allowing for the manuscript to be published at least ten (10) days before the public defence. When the time is fixed and the opponent appointed, it should be remembered that the opponent must have at least one (1) month to study the final manuscript.
13) When the opponent has been appointed, the Registrar sends the manuscript (plus possible enclosures) to him/her, together with instructions for the assessment. The opponent has at least one (1) month to study the final manuscript. Please remember that you are not to contact your opponent before the public defence; the Custos handles all communication concerning the practical arrangements relating to the public examination.
Theses that are published in Hanken's series:
The Doctoral Student
- sends the manuscript for printing
- prints out the same number of copies of the manuscript as appointed opponents
- binds the manuscript/s
- send the manuscript/s to the registrar
- sends the manuscript/s to the opponent/s
When the manuscript has been published the defendant is responsible for providing the Registrar with the sufficient number of copies. The Registrar forwards the thesis to the opponent/s.
NB! Neither the doctoral student nor the supervisor/s are to send any copies of the manuscript to the opponent.
14) The manuscript should be posted on the official notice boards in Helsinki and Vaasa no later than ten (10) days before the public examination. If your manuscript is not published in Hanken's publication series, you should deliver these copies to the Publication Secretary in good time, with further copies for internal and external distribution. The Publication Secretary will inform you about the number of copies.
15) Useful advice and instructions are available under Public Defence.
Grading of Dissertations by the Academic Council
16) After the public examination, the opponent submits his/her statement to the Academic Council, including a proposal for acceptance or rejection, within four (4) weeks. After receipt of the statement, the Registrar forwards it to the Custos, who communicates it to you, including his proposal for the Academic Council. You then have the right to hand in a reasoned statement, otherwise you should inform the Custos that you have no objections to the statement or the proposal. As was the case with the pre-examiners' statements, you do not comment on the proposal, but on the argumentation in the statements. The Academic Council grades the dissertation.
Application for Degree Certificate
17) When the Academic Council has graded your dissertation, you may apply for your degree certificate, provided that you have passed all other required examinations. Your Degree Supervisor verifies the examinations you have taken and confirms them as elements of your degree. There is a predetermined timetable for graduation dates (see the information on Completion of studies and application for degree certificates). Ceremonial conferments of doctoral degrees take place every five years. You will receive separate information in advance.
Instructions for Pre-examiners and Opponents
See attachment below for instruction for Pre-examiners and Opponents.