Comprehensive exam

Comprehensive exam

for students beginning PhD studies in 2016 or later

Comprehensive exam
The aim of the exam is to assess the gained theoretical knowledge from the Training and Research Period and to prove the preparedness for the Research and Dissertation Period.

The Comprehensive Exams are held publicly in front of a committee with three members. The head of the committee can be a Professor of the University, a Professor Emeritus, Research Professor or an Associate Professor with habilitation. The members of the committee have to hold at least a PhD degree and at least one member is must not be an employee of the university.

The mentor/supervisor of the doctoral student may attend the exam but may not take part in the evaluation.

Only doctoral students who have completed the Training and Research Period curriculum (120 credit) and the Digital Humanities workshop, which is reviewed by the Doctoral Office, may attend the Comprehensive Exam.

The Comprehensive Exam takes place during the Exam Period. Re-Examination can be organized until 15th February in the Fall Semester and 15th September in the Spring Semester. The Doctoral Council of the Faculty appoints the members of the Committee and determines the topics of the Exam based on the proposal by the doctoral program responsible.

The application is only possible during the exam application period until the week of 31th of October in the Winter Semester and until the week of  31th of March in the Summer Semester. (For exact deadlines please check the academic calendar.)

Along with the application for the Comprehensive Examination, students have to attach the following documents. 

  • Application form with suggestions for the committee and the topic of the exam. (The name of the document should be jelentkezés_SURNAME_GIVEN NAME.pdf)​​
    • Accepted file formats: pdf, doc, docx, rar, zip, 7z, jpg, png, xls, xlsx, ppt, pptx
  • List of Publications (if any) from MTMT (Database of Hungarian Scientific Works) 
  • At least two author's sheet (ca.: 80 000 character) in the topic of the dissertation 
  • Research Plan for the Research and Dissertation Period
  • Review of the student’s performance in the Training and Research Period and permission for the Exam by the mentor/supervisor
  • Additional documents for the students of Doctoral School of Literary Studies:
    • Work Report for the Application for the Comprehensive Examination (form)
    • Extended vocational bibliography (form)

The applicant should submit the documents via the online application system. The format of the documents can be .word or .pdf.


The Department of Doctoral and Academic Affairs shall not be notified about the date of the comprehensive examination. The DoDAA will send all the necessary documents (including the protocols of the exam) to the examination board before the beginning of the exam period. After the exam, the signed and dated protocols shall be submitted to the DoDAA, where the results will be entered into the NEPTUN system.   

Parts of the Comprehensive Exam:

1. Theoretical Part - aims to measure the preparedness of the student in the theoretical background:

1.1 Main Topic - The disciplinary background of the dissertation (from the topics introduced by the doctoral programs, for details ask your mentor/supervisor or the head of your program)

1.2 Side Topic - will be specified by the doctoral program at the time of application

2. Dissertation Part:

The examinee must prove in the form of a presentation the progress made in the topic of the dissertation and his/her research plan for the second period. The committee judges the submitted (2 author’s sheet) work and the presentation together.

The theoretical as well as the dissertation part will be judged based on two scale system (pass or fail). The whole comprehensive exam will be judged on two scale (pass, fail).

In case of failing one or both parts of the Theoretical Part, the exam may be repeated in the same exam period on the day appointed for re-examinations. The Dissertation Part is also repeatable in case of a fail.

In special cases postponing the Comprehensive Exam may be requested in the same exam period until the deadline for the re-examination.

Students who fail to take the Comprehensive Exam by the end of the 4th semester (until the deadline of the re-examination period), or should fail the Comprehensive Exam (even the re-examination) lose their student status automatically.