Rennes 2 Doctoral Schools

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Our University is home to a number of new doctoral schools. Three of the doctoral schools available to students are directed by Rennes 2 University.

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Doctoral Programs at Rennes 2 University

A doctorate degree is prepared in an accredited doctoral school (ED), which is the French equivalent of a graduate school but exclusively at the PhD level.  Undertaken within a recognized research unit following a national evaluation, under the responsibility of a thesis supervisor attached to that school, or two supervisors (especially for co-tutelles). Doctoral enrollment is pronounced by the head of the University on the proposal of the director of the school, director of the research unit and the ED Council.

Doctoral Schools (EDs)

The French Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation has approved a regional system in Brittany, which means that Rennes 2 University can deliver the doctoral degree in three EDs in which the majority of its PhD students are enrolled. 

Rennes 2 University heads the Doctoral School for Arts, Literature and Languages ​​(ALL); as well as the Schools of Societies, Times & Territories (ESC); and Education, Language, Interactions, Cognition, Clinic and Expertise (ELICCE). A list of doctoral specializations is available at the bottom of this page. 


  • ED Arts, Humanities, Languages (ALL)

The Arts, Humanities and Languages (ALL) doctoral school is the only one directly supported and managed by Rennes 2 University. It has 300 PhD students - about 200 of whom are registered in our institution -, and is backed, for Rennes 2, by 11 research teams from the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Communication and the Faculty of Languages.

The National School of Architecture (ENSAB) in Brittany is a partner institution and EESAB (Ecole européenne supérieure d'art de Bretagne) is an associate member. The doctoral school comes under the field that is traditionally referred to as the “humanities”. The building blocks of its identity and unity are the training courses, seminars and doctoral days in which all partner universities participate (Rennes 2, University of Western Brittany, University of Southern Brittany). Identity and unity are also values made visible by the PhD student journal: TransversALL. Available in print and digital format, it releases one or two issues per year and is entirely student-led (

Director: Anne Goarzin (Rennes 2 University)


  • ED Education, Language, Interactions, Cognition, Clinical (ELICCE)

ELICCE is a multi-campus (Brest, Rennes, Vannes) and inter-regional doctoral school whose head office is located in Nantes. Since September 1st, 2017, it has been coordinating and providing training for PhD students (on average 350) in 9 different specializations. It is supported by 12 research units in the fields of philosophy, educational sciences, psychology, Science and Technology of Physical Sports Activities (STAPS) and didactics. There are 130 staff with research supervision accreditation (HDR), and an average of sixty theses defended each year.

This school was the result of a restructuring that provided the opportunity to unify themes and research issues around cognition, language, didactics and education. ELICCE’s narrow thematic scope enables it to project a strong identity and visibility in its missions.

Director: Élisabeth Richard (Rennes 2 University)


  • ED Societies, Times, & Territories (ESC)

The Societies, Times, & Territories doctoral school brings together 23 social sciences specializations and hosts 570 PhD students (190 of whom are in Rennes) in 13 Research Units (8 of which are located in Rennes). STT’s diversity is enhanced by a genuine collective dynamic that accompanies PhD students in their institutional path, provides them with interdisciplinary training, and encourages and organizes meetings between them, particularly during the annual residential seminar days. This residential seminar allows for real exchanges between PhD students and supervisors from different disciplines around issues that they sometimes have in common.

Director: Philip Milburn (Rennes 2 University)

Assistant Director: Véronique Van Tilbeurgh (Rennes 2 University)


Four other doctoral schools also host PhD students from our university:

  • Law and Political Science (DSP)
  • Mathematics, Information and Communication Sciences and Technologies (MATISSE)
  • Human Sciences, Health (SVS)
  • Economics & Management (EDGE)