5. Rules on the Application for Doctoral Degrees of Shanghai Jiao Tong University

Provided that students finish their training programs, pass their exams and get enough credits within the period specified by the university with their dissertations meeting the demands for publication of their schools and approved by supervisors, they could apply for the doctoral degrees under this regulation.

  1. Scientific Paper Publishing

Before the application of dissertation defense, it is necessary to publish scientific papers (or accepted) which are related to the main contents of dissertations prescribed as following:

  1. Quantity and Quality
  1. Science: two scientific papers published (or accepted), at least one of which indexed by SCI.
  2. Engineering and agriculture: two scientific papers published (or accepted), at least one indexed by SCI or EI.
  3. Literature, law, economics and management: two published (or accepted) scientific papers indexed by SSCI or CSSCI.
  1. Recognition Method

During the doctoral programs, students shall have papers published or accepted by the journals recognized by Academic Degree Evaluation Committee of the school with Shanghai Jiao Tong University as its primary publishing unit. A paper is regarded as one published piece if the student is the first author while as a half published piece if the student is the second author. Papers with the student as the third author or after are excluded.

Academic Degree Evaluation Committee of the school can lay down requirements higher than the above standard. In order to encourage doctoral students to publish high-quality papers, the committee shall give a list of guiding journals and decrease the publishing quantity for those whose papers are published in high-level international journals of the subject, or with high impact factor or citation rate.

  1. Dissertations

Dissertations written either in Chinese or English shall go through the following procedures after reviewed and finalized by supervisors.

  1. Dissertation Pre-defense
  1. Dissertation Pre-defense Team

Dissertation pre-defense team shall consist of at least 5 experts working on the same subject with associate professor titles or above. There could be no more than three associate professors in the team and they must obtain their doctoral degrees. One person acts as the head of the team. The doctoral student’s supervisor shall take part in his dissertation pre-defense but not as a member of the team.

  1. The Procedures of Dissertation Pre-defense Meeting

Before the dissertation pre-defense meeting,members of dissertation pre-defense team shall give a comprehensive and detailed preliminary review of the dissertation draft, dissertation proposal as well as expert opinions. The meeting mainly includes:

  1. Introduction to dissertation: the author shall prove the innovative and important conclusions reached in his dissertation. His supervisor will also give a comprehensive introduction to the doctoral student’s research.
  2. Questioning and Evaluation: Members of Dissertation Pre-defense Team shall question the dissertation draft; evaluate its originality, academic level, and the argumentations, research outcomes and key conclusions of both the theoretical and experimental study; and reach appropriate conclusions. Pre-defense results include: pass, partial pass and fail.
  • Pass: to submit the dissertation for review;
  • Partial pass: to submit revision report and the dissertation for review after revising;
    • Fail: to defend the dissertation again after an overall revision and approval of the supervisor.
  1. Review of Dissertations

It usually happens three months before dissertation defense. Dissertations shall be prepared in triplicate and evaluated by 3 experts working in the same field. One of the experts shall be an associate professor or above (with doctoral degrees) employed by the subject. And the other two experts shall have titles corresponding to professors, who are employed from outside by the university to conduct dual blind review (hereinafter referred to as blind review).

  1. Duration of Review

The results of review shall be returned within two months (from the day when the dissertation is submitted). If the dissertation is not returned within two months (winter and summer vacation as well as national holidays excluded), the doctoral student can apply for dissertation defense with the permission of his supervisor. A pass of the dissertation allows him to further apply for a doctoral degree. Students who dissent from the returned reviews shall still revise and improve their dissertations according to reviews given.

  1. Objection Handling
  1. Reconsideration: Objected dissertations shall be sent to the original experts after revision. Students who pass the reconsideration can apply for dissertation defense. Those who get objected again and not allowed for defense shall continue their research and make innovative progress. Reconsideration cannot last longer than 1 year (from the date of first submission) after revising within the period specified by the university. No application for doctoral degree is accepted if overdue. Expenses of reconsideration shall be borne by students themselves.
  2. Appeal: Those who disagree with the results of review can appeal to Academic Degree Evaluation Committee of the school they belong to within ten days after receiving the results.
  1. Three Doctoral Dissertation Defense

The application of doctoral dissertation defense shall be submitted to the relevant department after the paper is approved by evaluation, revised according to advice of experts, finalized by the supervisor and reaches the standard of paper publication set by the college. After the examination by the supervisor and the relevant department of the college, the dissertation defense shall be held.

Relevant personnel shall be assigned to be secretaries of the committee, responsible for the preparations of defense materials, the organizations of defense and the collection of materials after the defense.

  1. Members of the Dissertation Committee

Dissertation Committees shall be formed by five or seven experts who are associate professors and professors from our university and other universities (at least two). The associate professors must have doctoral degrees. There shall be two associate professors at most.

The chair of the dissertation committee must be the professor who has achieved a high academic level and is experienced in training doctoral students. The supervisor of the doctor can be one member of the dissertation committee but can't be the chair. If the supervisor serves as the member of the dissertation committee, there shall be seven experts (including the supervisor).

  1. Procedures of the Dissertation Defense Meeting

Following principles of “sticking to the academic standards, ensuring quality and making fair and reasonable judgment”, the dissertation defense meeting shall be conducted in a fair and open way in accordance with following procedures:

  1. The dissertation writer makes a presentation to demonstrate the paper (about 45 minutes);
  2. The dissertation writer reads The Original Statement of Dissertation;
  3. The secretary of the committee gives an introduction to the writing of the paper, the revision of the paper, the advice of evaluation and conclusion;
  4. The dissertation writer defends against the questioning from members of the dissertation committee;
  5. Adjournment. The dissertation committee shall convene an appraisal meeting to discuss about the academic level and oral defense of the writer, reach the defense conclusions through secret ballot, draw up and approve a defense resolution. The chair of the dissertation committee shall sign on the defense resolution.
  6. Resumption of meeting. The chair announces the resolution and the conclusion.
  7. The dissertation writer signs The Authorization of the Use of the Dissertation Copyright
  1. The Conclusion of Defense

The conclusion is reached through secret ballots of members of the committee.

  1. Defense approved. Students shall be awarded the doctoral degree with the support of a two-thirds majority of the committee members. It shall be reviewed by the academic degree evaluation committee of the college.
  2. Defense failure. The defense fails if less than two-thirds majority of the committee approve the defense. Those who fail the defense can revise the paper within two years and defend again. If the committee think the paper does not reach the standard of the doctoral degree yet meet the requirements of the master's degree, students can apply for the master's degree.
  1. The Examination of Degree Conferment

The application for doctoral degrees shall be checked by the academic degree evaluation committee of the relevant department and the academic degree evaluation committee of Shanghai Jiao Tong University. Those who have been approved can be awarded doctoral degrees and be issued an appropriate diploma. Doctoral degree conferment to those who have not been approved will be postponed. Students can continue their research, revise and defense their dissertations to apply for the degree again within two years. Overdue applications will not be accepted.

  1. Related Issues
  1. Academic Ethics

Students shall observe the Academic Norms of Graduates of Shanghai Jiao Tong University.

  1. Appeal

The Academic Degree Evaluation Committee of is the supreme body to check the conferment of academic degrees. Anyone who dissents from the decision or resolution made by the committee of the school or subject can submit a written appeal to the committee at a higher level within ten workdays from the date of receiving notification.

  1. Preservation and Filing of Materials of Degree Application and Conferment

Materials of degree application and conferment shall be filed without delay.


These rules shall come into force upon promulgation. The Office of the Academic Degree Evaluation Committee is responsible for interpreting the rules.

[ 2015-07-13 ]