Regular dialogue is crucial to making good progress toward the goal of doctoral studies. Dialogue between the supervisor and doctoral candidate allows for a tighter focus in terms of content while also offering opportunities to modify timelines and identify and resolve any issues with the dissertation early on.
The goal of the feedback session that is stipulated in the doctoral study regulations is to provide a firm institutional framework for dialogue on the status of the doctoral studies while at the same time paving the way to swift completion of the work involved.
Doctoral candidates at TUM are obligated to meet with their supervisor for a feedback session after four semesters at the most (bylaws of TUM-GS, §15 (7)). The basis for the session is:
- a public presentation in a seminar at the university, which can be replaced with a presentation at an academic or scientific conference;
- a written interim report by the doctoral candidate regarding the progress of his/her academic or scientific work, which can be replaced with a scholarly or scientific paper submitted for publication if this paper provides a comprehensive view of the findings;
- an updated supervision agreement; and
- a consultation between the doctoral candidate and his/her mentor.
The supervisor evaluates the progress of the dissertation. The results are set down in a document and confirmed by both sides with their signatures. The doctoral candidate then uploads it to the DocGS online platform and obtains confirmation of the successful feedback session from the graduate center.