Thesis follow-up and support

During your PhD, you benefit from follow-up by your thesis director.

Below is information on the steps to be taken for the thesis defense and how to obtain the International Mobility Recognition (formerly the European label) for which an application must be filed with the thesis support file.

The decree of May 25, 2016 details the conditions for re-enrollment in PhD programs depending on whether you are preparing your thesis on a full time or part-time basis. In addition, the progress of your work is systematically reviewed by an Individual Monitoring Committee when you are in your 3rd year.
From now on, any PhD student can request a gap year of up to 12 months, only once during the preparation of the thesis (after the employer's agreement if necessary, and the opinion of the thesis director, and the director of the PhD faculty). - art. 14 of the decree of 25/05/2016.

Changing your thesis title

If the title of your thesis changes, your thesis director should inform the Postgraduate Office.

Transfer of university files

PhD students (on a gap year) can get the application form for the transfer of university records to the Postgraduate Office, and have it signed by its thesis director and the president of the host university, before returning it to the Postgraduate Office. The Postgraduate Office is responsible for getting the document signed by the presidency of the ENS de Lyon.


  • 3 months prior
    • The thesis defense project file needs to be handed in by the thesis director, 3 months prior to the planned defense date (administrative closures of the School extend this period)
    • Transmission of the file by the Postgraduate Office to the Postgraduate Committee for advice on the selection of referees and members of the jury.
  • 2.5 months prior
    • Transmission of the manuscript to the referees by the PhD student.
    • Sending letters to the referees by the Postgraduate office for the return date of the manuscript.
  • 1 month prior
    • Feedback from referees to the thesis defense of the Postgraduate Office.
    • Following the favorable approval from the referees, authorization to defend and communicate the summary of the thesis
    • Sending reports from referees to the PhD student by the Postgraduate Office
    • Invitations for pre-reports sent to jury members by the Postgraduate Office
    • Electronic sending of the thesis at the Diderot library in Lyon by the PhD student
  • 3 weeks prior
    • Sending a thesis certificate and the electronic posting form filled in by the Diderot Library in Lyon to the Postgraduate Office
    • Delivery or submission to the thesis director of the Statement of Defense, the Notice of Reproduction of the Thesis, the Thesis Defense Report form, the Thesis Deposit Certificate and the Electronic Posting form. 
  • On the day: Defense
    • The meeting place will be specified to the PhD student when they make an appointment for their thesis defense.

This is a recognition awarded in addition to the PhD awarded by a European university.

  1. Write a specific application for a label for the president of the ENS de Lyon, under the supervision of the thesis director and the director of the PhD faculty, along with a validation form of this application available at the Postgraduate Office at the Registrar’s department.

  2. You need to hand in, with the application file for your thesis defense:
  • Your specific application with the validation form duly completed and signed by all parties
  • A certificate of internship established by the host laboratory in another EU country other than the French state
  • A letter from your management in the laboratory where your thesis work was carried out.

The defense minutes will indicate that the jury grants the label of a "European doctorate".
After the defense, the president of the jury specifies in his defense report if another language of the European Union other than French, for part of the defense was used.

If you are considering filing a qualification file for the functions of university professor or lecturer, please note that, a decree of 5/7/17 states that:

The diplomas, defense reports and certificates written in a foreign language should be accompanied by a French-language translation whereby the candidate certifies compliance on honor. Otherwise, the file will be declared inadmissible.
The documents mentioned in Article 4 [works, books and articles] written in a foreign language must be accompanied by summaries written in French. Failing that, the department cannot review the file.