The PhD thesis examination culminates the candidate's research program. It exposes the candidate's work to scholarly criticism by members of the University and gives the student the opportunity to defend it.
Detailed instructions for the submission, defense and approval of the thesis, as well as guidelines for selecting the External Examiner are located on the Faculty of Mathematics Graduate Office website.
When considering potential External Examiners (EE), the supervisor must review the university's required criteria. Before contacting any potential EE, the supervisor must receive pre-approval from the School's Director of Graduate Studies and the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies. Review the instructions for how to obtain pre-approval on the faculty website. We recommend you start this process at least nine weeks prior to the proposed defence date.
The Internal-External examiner is internal to the university and external to the candidate's home department. Cross appointed faculty to the School of Computer Science can be considered for the Internal-External examiner.
The defense committee
The defense committee is normally made up of the supervisor (and co-supervisor) and two faculty members from the School of Computer Science, or faculty members cross appointed to the School from other University of Waterloo departments. The Internal-External Examiner and the External Examiner complete the committee. Normally at least two members of the committee will be regular faculty members in SCS. The Director of Graduate Studies of SCS must approve the committee. The Faculty Associate Dean of Graduate Studies will also appoint a Chair to oversee the defense. The School's requirements with regard to the committee may differ from the Faculty of Mathematics requirements.
Arranging a PhD defense
Candidates are required to request External Examiner approval at least 9 weeks prior to the defense. After receiving preapproval of the EE from the Associate Dean Grad Studies a Notice of PhD Thesis Submission for Display and Oral Defence form must be sent to the graduate coordinator PhD Program. This must be submitted 7 weeks prior to the proposed defence date. The Math Grad Office will require your thesis 5 weeks prior to the defence date.
Thesis formatting review and deposit
The thesis regulations must be followed and the formatting approved before the thesis can be accepted for final deposit. Candidates are advised to carefully review the formatting requirements before submitting the thesis for formatting review through UWSpace.