In the last years the number of citizens holding scientific degrees has substantially increased. Scholarship is becoming a tangible factor in the economy of our society. Those who hold degrees seek to the results of their work serve the immediate needs of progress.
The right to aspire for a Master’s degree is granted to persons with higher education who have passed the Master’s examinations and have publicly presented their dissertation in their chosen subject. The degree is awarded by the councils of higher schools or research institutions which examine the thesis presented. The Doctor’s degree is awarded by the Higher Qualifications Commission of the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation upon recommendation of the councils of higher schools or research institutions. Those who have a Master’s degree or the title of professor are awarded the Doctor’s degree after publicly presenting a thesis for it.
In exceptional cases the doctorate may be awarded to persons who have become known for their outstanding research, discoveries or inventions. In this case they are not required to publicly present a thesis.
The Higher Qualifications Commission has the right to allow the applicants to present published works which have considerably contributed to science and technology, or major inventions used in production. A published textbook which is an independent research or methodological study by the applicant may also be accepted as a dissertation.
An instrument for the suturing of bones was shown at the Montreal International Exibition. It won for its inventor, Dr. G. Elizarov, the degree of Master of Medicine, without the presentation of a dissertation.
The topic of a dissertation should correspond to the objectives of cultural, scientific or industrial progress.
After the council has accepted the dissertation, it appoints official opponents: not less than two, one of whom must hold a Doctor’s degree if it concerns a Master’s dissertation or three persons with a Doctor’s degree if it concerns a doctorate.
There have been cases when a Master’s dissertation was found by the opponents (men with Doctor’s degrees) to meet the requirements of a doctorate. Then the council has to take two votes by secret ballot: on awarding the Master’s degree and on applying to the highest Qualifications Commission for a Doctor’s degree.
During the presentation of the dissertation the applicant has to defend his arguments.
The decision is made by secret ballot and the degree granted when two thirds of the votes are in favour. If the vote goes against it, the dissertation can be presented only after being re-written.