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Thesis Defence Training

Two-day workshop offered by the Bonn Graduate Center on - NEW DATE - February 14 & 15, 2019, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m., Alte Sternwarte, Poppeldorfer Allee 47, Room Lyra.


Course Content

The last big milestone in a PhD is the oral defence of the dissertation, which brings particular challenges in communication. This workshop is aimed at doctorial candidates, who want to engage in intensive preparation for their disputation. Based on the individual experiences of the participants, presentation techniques and defence strategies are developed in the workshop. This includes appropriately interpreting scientific study results during the course of the disputation as well as adequately reacting to possibly critical questions in response. At the start of the seminar, the participants’ vocal and body language presence is analysed and developed. Following that, five strategies for convincing argumentative as well as rhetorical positioning during the disputation are conveyed. The PhD candidates actively implement these in the most important part of the workshop – the disputation simulations. If required, managing stage fright and nervousness can also be addressed. 

  • Presentation techniques
  • Developing the individual’s language expression
  • Techniques for answering return questions
  • Handling criticism: giving feedback and accepting it
  • Reactions to possibly critical and provocative questions
  • Verbal, part verbal and non-verbal conduct
  • Handling stress, techniques for managing stress

Target Group 

Doctoral candidates in the final stages of their dissertation

Course Language


Course Instructor

Alexander Roggenkamp

"Promotion plus"

16 units are applicable for this course within the "Promotion plus" certificate. 


Module 1: Independent Research





Joana SW
 In case you have questions regarding our course offerings, please contact:
Joana Bürger-John, Bonn Graduate Center, [Email protection active, please enable JavaScript.].
The premises of Bonn Graduate Center are not barrier-free. Please contact us by e-mail when you register for a workshop if your mobility is limited. We will attempt to find a solution to enable you to participate in our workshop.