Thesis Examining Committee

The membership of the Thesis Examining Committee is determined by your Supervisor. The Thesis Examining Committee includes:

  • a Chair (faculty member of the School)
  • an External Examiner from another university (chosen by the Supervisor), with expertise in your area of interest. It is preferred that the External Examiner be physically present for the oral thesis examination. However, in certain extenuating circumstances, it is acceptable for the oral thesis examination to be scheduled so that the External Examiner from outside of Queen’s University could participate in the oral thesis examination remotely using video conference or teleconference. Arrangements for the use of remote access services must be made by the Student and their Supervisor in conjunction with the Chair.  Remote attendance must be reported on the Oral Examination Form.
  • an Examiner from another department at Queen's (who did not serve on the Thesis Proposal Committee) who has expertise in your area of interest,
  • an Examiner from inside the School with expertise in your area of interest,
  • the Director of the School or their delegate,
  • the Supervisor.


  1. The Doctoral Candidate being examined must be present in person at Queen’s University for their oral thesis examination.
  2. For the regulations on how to proceed with the oral thesis examination if one examiner cannot attend due to sudden illness etc., see Absence of Examiners.

Once the Supervisor and the Doctoral Candidate have selected a date and time for the defense, the Doctoral Candidate should meet with the SKHS Graduate Assistant.  This meeting should occur no less than 30 working days (not including the date of the defense) prior to the defense date to prepare the PhD Oral Thesis Examination Form. This allows the SKHS Graduate Assistant sufficient time to secure a room for the defense, identify a Head's Delegate if required, and forward the documentation to the SGS Thesis Coordinator to secure a Chair.

A PhD Oral Thesis Examination Form is prepared by the SKHS Graduate Assistant for signature by the Doctoral Candidate, the Supervisor and the Director. 

The Doctoral Candidate must deliver a hard copy of their thesis document accompanied by a copy of the signed Oral Thesis Examination Form to each member of their Committee. The Chair's copy and the original of the signed PhD Oral Thesis Examination Form must be delivered by the Doctoral Candidate to the SGS Thesis Coordinator in Gordon 425. The remaining copies must be hand-delivered or placed in the faculty member's mailbox inthe unit.  The SKHS Graduate Assistant will forward the External Examiner's copy via courier with the cost to be borne by the School.