Admission procedure for doctoral studies for holders of a foreign university degree or a foreign university of applied sciences degree

Do not forget to read the information regarding the deadlines and the conditions which appear under the various headings of the Regulations concerning the registration conditions.


After reading the registration conditions, candidates who consider to fulfill them submit and validate their application for admission online within the specified deadline. They upload the documents according to the provided instructions. Depending on the country where the previous diplomas were obtained, certified copies must be sent by post.

Content of the application for enrolment in a doctoral programme for candidates whit a foreign university degree


The Admissions Office processes the application and checks that formal conditions of admission to the chosen programme are satisfied.

Provided they meet the formal conditions, the applications for a doctoral programme are subsequently forwarded to the Faculty or School in question, which must give its approval.


The prospective PhD student must also send the two copies of the completed and signed PdD form (attestation de thèse) to his/her thesis director. The link to the form is provided in the online application and in the email acknowledging receipt sent immediately after the confirmation by the candidate (to be printed out by him/her).

The thesis director signs and forwards the form to the Doctoral School or the Dean’s Office, who stamps and signs the document before returning it to the Admissions Office by 15 October 2024 (autumn semester 2024/2025) or 28 February 2025 (spring semester 2025). It is therefore important for the candidate to forward the PhD form to the thesis director without delay.

If the application has been sent after the deadlines or the PhD form has been submitted to the Admissions Office after the deadlines, the registration will be postponed to the next semester (or, in case the late application is accepted, the prospective student will have to pay a surcharge of CHF 200.-).

It is therefore important that the candidate sends the “attestation de thèse” forms to his/her thesis director as soon as possible.

4 Accepted candidates receive a decision of admission to registration by postal mail, accompanied by instructions explaining how to confirm their registration; rejected candidates also receive a written decision.

Each candidate will receive a written decision when his/her complete application (according to the requirements specified in the Directive en matière de conditions d’immatriculation) is received by the Admissions Office. Therefore, it is pointless to contact the Admissions Office in the meantime.

5 According to their nationality, foreign candidates must obtain a study visa before coming to Switzerland; they should go to their nearest Swiss Embassy or Consulate to file their application, which must include in particular the decision of admission to registration.

The Admissions Office cannot intervene in this procedure with the authorities (Embassy, Consulate, population Office). As these steps can take two to three months, students are advised to undertake them as soon as possible.


Candidates confirm their registration according to instructions received with the decision of admission to registration (in particular they have to present their original secondary school and university diplomas, as well as the original transcripts). Candidates must follow the deadlines mentioned in these instructions, otherwise their application will be cancelled.

Note: if the diploma (or the certificate of graduation) cannot be submitted within the confirmation deadline specified by the Admissions Office, the enrolment has to be cancelled or postponed.


The invoice for course fees for the first semester is then available on the IT portal MyUnil.

Note: the invoice is not sent by post. The fees must be paid within the deadline specified on the invoice.

For information, the Population Service of the Canton of Vaud does not require a proof of payment of the the course fees for the first semester within the procedure of granting the visa (see application form for a temporary resident permit for study purposes in the Canton of Vaud).

8 Once candidates have paid their course fees, they acquire the status of student; they can download and print a certificate of enrolment for the semester on the IT portal MyUnil.

To process certain applications, the Admissions Office must request additional information (from the Recognition Information Centre (Swiss ENIC), the candidate, the schools or universities he or she has attended, etc).

Several weeks may elapse therefore between dispatch of the application and the final decision on registration acceptance.
Candidates are therefore advised to submit their applications as soon as possible.

Note: it is essential to provide complete and correct information when applying at UNIL (online registration and sending of the documents) and when completing your application later on with complementary documents or information. Any omission or submitting of fake or falsified documents can lead to a refusal of admission or an exclusion from UNIL. The Rectorate may refuse registration when the actions of a candidate lead to the conclusion, with supporting evidence, that its registration could threaten the safety of the members of the University.



the French version of the registration conditions prevails


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