[Even though this question is specifically about Sweden, but might apply to other countries too]

If a doctoral candidate has already submitted and printed their dissertation, but discovers errors in it just before their defense, are they allowed to correct these mistakes and request a reprint? I've observed at several PhD defenses where the examiner, just before the defense begins, asks the candidate if they wish to acknowledge any amendments. Typically, the response is negative. However, I'm curious about the protocol if a candidate were to admit to significant errors, such as incorrect experimental results in a specific chapter, and present a revised version.

In other words, what's the last moment a PhD student can make changes in his/her PhD dissertation, and what's the protocol if he/she decides to make "last-minute" changes?

  • 8
    This is something only someone from your own institution can answer. Ask your advisor/supervisor.
    – Bob Brown
    Nov 12, 2023 at 19:44
  • @BobBrown I asked them, they do not know the answer (or do not care). Also, my question was an inquiry about the rules/regulation of Swedish universities in general. I know many candidates have a similar question but they do not know the answer.
    – anonyasd
    Nov 12, 2023 at 22:28
  • 1
    What did your advisor recommend? Nov 20, 2023 at 3:03
  • @Aruralreader as I said in the comment above: "I asked them, they do not know the answer"
    – anonyasd
    Nov 25, 2023 at 2:07

2 Answers 2


In Sweden, I believe the procedure is to print an Errata (list of typos/fixes) on a separate piece of paper, which is then inserted into the thesis (by you perhaps). If it's a bigger issue (entire proofs), then discuss with supervisor.


Only Your Institution Knows

But who at your institution that might be, can be difficult to figure out. Let's run down a list of possibilities:

  • Your advisor/supervisor (which in this case you have ruled out)

  • Your department secretary. This person knows almost everything, and whatever they don't know, they probably know who to ask.

  • My institution had a graduate college, separate from the academic colleges, which was responsible for coordinating everything non-academic about the PhD process. If your institution has something similar, that college will also have a secretary who also knows almost everything.

  • Your department chair. Last on my list, because they are busy, and I would preface with, "I already asked A, B, and C, and none of them knew...."

  • "Only your institution knows": well, that's not really true because at least in Sweden there is a higher education guideline that universities have to follow, they can't really invent their own rules. What @PerAlexandersson said is the accurate answer I believe.
    – anonyasd
    Nov 25, 2023 at 2:10

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