Regulations for Higher Doctorates
(Version effective from 1 August 2023)
1.1 Regulations for Higher Doctorates
The University awards three Higher Doctorate degrees:
- Degree of Doctor of Technology (DTech)
- Doctor of Science (DSc)
- Doctor of Letters (DLitt)
A Higher Doctorate may be conferred by the University where an applicant has demonstrated:
- work of high distinction which constitutes a substantial and original contribution to knowledge over a sustained period of time
- acknowledged authority within their field of study, with demonstrable impact on others working in the academic field, or beyond academia (e.g. society, the economy)
- a substantial body of publications in high impact journals (or equivalent assessable outputs).
The degree is conferred on the recommendation of the Examiners.
To be eligible to submit for a Higher Doctorate a candidate must be a graduate of the University or a Diplomate of the former Loughborough College of Technology or a member or former member of the Academic Staff of the University. Graduates of the University may submit after not less than nine years after having had received the degree of Bachelor, not less than eight years after having received the degree of Master, or not less than six years after having received the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. Academic Staff of not less than nine years after having received their first degree, must have been in post not less than four years at the University.
A candidate must apply in writing to the Academic Registrar or nominee, stipulating the Degree for which they are applying. Fees will be charged in two parts, an initial fee to establish if there is a prima facie case for the submission to proceed, and a second fee at the point of full submission. Fees will be determined by Council.
The Degree is awarded solely on the basis of published work of high merit and related evidence in the field of research in which the candidate is engaged. The publications should indicate command over a field of study and a sustained contribution to understanding within that field. Books or work published in journals which the candidate wishes to be taken into consideration can be submitted in hard copy (three copies), electronically or as e-links.
Candidates should provide a brief CV which includes evidence of the significance and recognition of the research e.g. plenary-level speaker invitations, major grants or prizes. Evidence of the contribution of the work on others should also be included where appropriate.
There must also be submitted a statement containing:
- A list of the candidate’s publications. Those which contain the main substance of the submission should be marked.
- A synopsis of not less than 1000 words which describe how the substantial and sustained contribution to the field of study has been made with due reference primarily to the marked publications.but where relevant also to the other evidence of recognition provided in the submission.
- A declaration of the nature and extent of the candidate’s own contribution, and that of co-authors and collaborators, to each of the publications submitted.
- A declaration of what part of the publications, if any, has been submitted by the candidate, or collaborators, for a degree of this or any other university, or of any professional body or learned society. Any material which has been previously submitted for another degree must be clearly specified and will not be included in the assessment.
On the basis of items 1-4 the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation) in consultation with the Dean of the appropriate School or other academic staff with appropriate subject expertise shall consider whether there is a prima facie case for the submission to proceed.
If a prima facie case has not been established or the application is deemed premature, this shall not prevent the candidate from applying on a further occasion at a later stage.
The candidate may be invited to identify possible Examiners for the submission, but the University reserves the right to select the Examiners, taking appropriate advice on their suitability. The Examiners are expected to have expert knowledge of the field and ideally will possess a higher doctorate themselves. The Examiners shall not have had substantial co-authoring or collaborative involvement in the candidate’s work.
Three External Examiners will be appointed by the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation) on the recommendation of the Dean of the appropriate School or other academic staff with appropriate subject expertise. The Examiners will take into consideration primarily those publications which are defined by the candidate as containing the main substance of the submission. Each Examiner, separately, will report to the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation) their assessment of the work submitted and the Pro-Vice-Chancellor, having considered the advice of the Examiners will, if appropriate, recommend to Senate that a degree be awarded.
Examiners will be asked to consider whether the submission is:
- substantial in scale and in the contribution it has made to knowledge in the specified field of research
- sustained over time
- authoritative, being able to demonstrate impact on the work of others in or outside of academia.
Each Examiner, separately, will report to the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation) their assessment of the work submitted and the Pro-Vice-Chancellor, having considered the advice of the Examiners will, if appropriate, recommend to Senate that a degree be awarded.
The Pro-Vice-Chancellor shall approve the award of a higher doctorate on the basis of the unanimous recommendation of the Examiners. In the event that this is not possible, the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation), if appropriate, may recommend that the candidate revises the submission and makes a further submission to a new examination team after an interval of not less than two years.
Irrespective of the submission being successful or unsuccessful, the candidate will receive anonymised copies of the examiners reports for feedback purposes.
Appeals will only be considered on the grounds of procedural irregularities in the conduct of the assessment. Any such appeal should be submitted to the Academic Registrar, with supporting evidence, within 10 working days of receipt of the examiners’ reports. Appeals will be considered by the Vice-Chancellor whose decision shall be final.
1.7 Retention of Publications
The University reserves the right to retain an electronic copy of any successful submission in the University Repository.