Trial lecture and public defence

After the doctoral thesis has been submitted for evaluation and it has been found worthy of a public defence (c.f. section 15), the PhD candidate must hold a trial lecture. The trial lecture is an independent part of the examination for the PhD degree and is held on an assigned topic. The purpose is to test the candidate’s ability to acquire knowledge beyond the topic of the doctoral thesis and to convey this knowledge in a lecture situation.

The title of the trial lecture must be announced to the PhD candidate ten (10) days prior to the lecture. The topic of the lecture must not have a direct connection to the topic of the thesis.

The trial lecture must be held in the language in which the doctoral thesis is written, unless the institution (KFU) approves the use of another language. If the candidate wants to hold the trial lecture in a language other than the language used in the doctoral thesis, the candidate must seek permission for this when submitting the doctoral thesis for evaluation.

The evaluation committee is responsible for determining whether the trial lecture is approved or not approved. If the trial lecture is not approved, the reason for this must be explained.

To pass the trial lecture, the candidate must receive a mark of "laud"/B.

The trial lecture must be approved before the public defence can be held,

The trial lecture at NIH should address "an imagined, enlightened, educated public", in this setting to be understood as "an audience of sport scientists and physical education/sports students from higher level studies".

Public defence of the doctoral thesis

The public defence of the doctoral thesis must take place after the trial lecture has been held and approved, and no later than two (2) months after the institution has found the thesis to be worthy of a public defence.

The time and location of the public defence must be announced at least ten (10) working days prior to the scheduled date.

If the evaluation committee wants the defence to be held in a language other than the language used in the thesis, this must be proposed to KFU at the same time that the evaluation is forwarded to KFU.

There will normally be two opposing speakers at the defence. These two speakers must be members of the evaluation committee and will be appointed by the institution (KFU).

The public defence will be chaired by a person authorised by the institution. The chair of the defence will give a brief explanation of the procedures relating to the submission and evaluation of the doctoral thesis. Then the PhD candidate will explain the purpose and findings of the doctoral research project. This explanation should not exceed 30 minutes.

The first opposing speaker begins the questioning of the PhD candidate and the second opposing speaker concludes the questioning. The institution may decide to distribute the tasks normally assigned to the opposing speakers and the candidate in a different way. After both opposing speakers have concluded their questioning, members of the audience will have the opportunity to comment. One of the opposing speakers concludes the questioning, and the chair of the defence concludes the defence proceedings (c.f. the Norwegian Association of Higher Education Institutions’ Guidelines for the Evaluation of Candidates for Norwegian Doctoral Degrees).

The evaluation committee submits its report to the institution in which it explains how it has assessed the public defence of the thesis. The report must conclude whether the defence was approved or not approved. If the defence is not approved, the report must provide an explanation for this.

After the public defence, the evaluation committee sends a report to board of NIH to determine whether the candidate should receive the doctoral degree. The report must explain how the committee has evaluated the doctoral thesis and the candidate’s public defence of the thesis. In its conclusion, the report must state whether the examinations (the doctoral thesis, trial lecture and defence) as a whole are deemed satisfactory.