The thesis defence must take place in a session that is open to the public within the academic year (between October and September, but not the month of August).
In the thesis defence, doctoral students must present and defend, to the members of the examination panel, the research work they have carried out, the methodology used, the content and the conclusions. They must make special reference to the thesis's original contributions.
The members of the examination panel can ask the doctoral students any questions they feel to be relevant. Any doctors in attendance can ask questions when indicated to do so by the president of the panel.
Grading the doctoral thesis
In accordance with current legislation, once the doctoral thesis defence has finished, the panel has to issue a report and award the overall grade.
The panel can propose that the thesis be awarded the distinction of cum laude, if the secret vote is unanimous in this regard.
The final award of this distinction must guarantee that the votes are counted in a session other than the session of the doctoral thesis defence.
Those students who are awarded the distinction of cum laude can opt for a special prize.