Cotutelle – Doctoral Studies Under Dual Supervision

Students of doctoral study programmes can study at foreign universities under the Joint Supervision (so-called cotutelle). The joint (dual) supervision of the dissertation takes place on the basis of cooperation between the CU and the foreign university. It is ensured by two supervisors: one from each of the institutions involved and the student spends part of the doctoral study at both institutions.

For each doctorate prepared in the cotutelle scheme, the partner institutions enter into a separate Agreement on Joint Supervision of a Dissertation Thesis (see below), which sets out the conditions, time schedule, and other requirements for studies and the defence of the dissertation. It is signed by the student and their supervisors, the dean of the faculty, the rector of Charles University and the relevant representatives of the partner institution. Further information can be submitted by the Department for Foreign Affairs of Second Faculty of Medicine.

Agreement on Joint Supervision of a Dissertation Thesis

1) General information

The doctorate “under the Joint Supervision” (from fr. cotutelle de thèse) is based on cooperation with foreign universities and allows students to prepare a joint dissertation under the guidance of two supervisors (at a foreign university and at Second Faculty of Medicine). The student is enrolled for doctoral studies at both universities, thus fulfilling study duties at both of them.

The contract concluded for this purpose must be approved by both partner universities. Charles University has prepared several possible models of contracts that can be used. If the partner university requires its own version of the contract, it must be sent to Second Faculty of Medicine to be discussed before its signature. If the partner university sends the already signed contracts without the prior consent of the CU, the contracts will not be recommended for signature. Detailed information can be found in Rector’s Directive No. 57/2017.

2) Before signing the cotutelle contract

  • The student must be accepted into the doctoral study programme at Second Faculty of Medicine (also applies to foreign students).
  • The student must be accepted into the doctoral study programme at the partner university (following the rules of this university).
  • The student discusses the possible conduct of the doctoral study programme in the cotutelle mode with his/her supervisor at Second Faculty of Medicine and addresses his/her future supervisor at the partner university.
  • The Department for PhD Study of Second Faculty of Medicine comments on the draft contract.

3) Signing the cotutelle contract

  • The contract is concluded individually with each student, primarily in English. If the partner university insists on the contract in the language of its country, the contract must be bilingual. The second language must be Czech. Model contracts (documents), methodological guidelines and other information are available here.
  • The information that the contract must contain is contained in Rector’s Directive No. 57/2017.
  • Completed contracts must be submitted to the Department for Foreign Affairs of Second Faculty of Medicine, which will provide the necessary signatures (rector, dean, supervisor, student and the partner university).
  • The number of originals of the signed contract depends on the wording of the contract, one original belongs to the student. A copy is stored in the student's personal file at the Department for PhD Study of Second Faculty of Medicine.

4) Before submitting the dissertation and the defence

  • The defence is held in accordance with the wording of the contract. The student must check the validity of the contract or amendments before submitting the dissertation. The defence may be held only during the period of validity of the contract.
  • The student must submit the dissertation defended in the cotuttelle regime in sufficient time (min. four months), taking into account the fact that the composition of the defence board is approved by the Research Council of  Second Faculty of Medicine, whose meeting dates are predetermined (it does not meet during the summer months). The board is appointed by the dean of Second Faculty of Medicine.
  • The student must fulfil all study obligations at both universities before submitting the dissertation. The interruption of study at one of the universities does not mean automatic interruption of study at the other university, unless this is expressly stipulated in the contract.
  • The dissertation must be submitted in a completely standard manner (in accordance with the contract) at Second Faculty of Medicine, regardless of the university at which the defence will be conducted.
  • The amount and type of contributions for travel expenses for members of the commission (both supervisors and opponents) must be consulted in advance with the Department for PhD Study of Second Faculty of Medicine in order to provide them in accordance with the Dean’s Provision No. 2/2022.

The schedule for preparing the dissertation defence follows the same rules as for the standard doctoral study programme at Second Faculty of Medicine.

Students and supervisors interested in this way of conducting the dissertation are asked to consult each step in advance with the Department for Foreign Affairs. The contact person is Ing. Pavla Byrne. Contracts cannot be signed without the approval of both parties. Contracts go through a comment procedure at the Rector’s Office of CU. Without the approval of the respective departments, the management of the CU will not sign the contracts.

Last update: 13. 4. 2022 / ThDr. Jitka Sýkorová, Ph.D.