The Cotutelle procedure enables a doctorate degree to be awarded by two universities acting together in different countries. The degree is based on a single research project completed jointly at the two universities in question. The universities cooperate closely in the selection, supervision and examination of candidates, and each university recognizes and accepts that part of the procedure completed at the other university. Should the two universities not come to an agreement about issuing a single doctoral certificate, the certificate from each university must bear a note to the effect that it is only valid in conjunction with the certificate from the other university.
The binational doctoral degree procedure is based on a formal agreement of cooperation concluded specifically for each project. A general agreement of cooperation between the two universities, or an agreement restricted to specific subjects or departments, can provide a basic regulatory framework for the procedure, but must in each case be supplemented with an agreement regulating the individual case. This agreement must take account of the doctoral degree regulations of each university and should be drawn up carefully in order to avoid problems arising at any point in the procedure. Particular attention should be paid to the form of the oral examination and the composition of the examining board (jury), as difficulties frequently arise in this context. Binational doctoral agreements involving the University of Wuppertal must, after being passed by the respective Faculty Board and signed by the candidate and his or her supervisor, be submitted to the Rector’s Office for signature.
The website of the German University Rectors\' Conference provides comprehensive information and assistance for drawing up cross-border doctorate agreements.
University of Wuppertal International Office offers information and advice on UW framework guidelines and procedures for the Cotutelle procedure.