In 2015, 42% of an age-group in France accesses a diploma of higher education, 3% of them reaches the docto's degree, 25% reaches a master's degree or equivalent. 13000 doctorates were issued in France in 2012 [ref], 190 000 masters or equivalent were issued during the same period (Masters (122000), Grandes écoles  (31300) or business schools (33500) [ref].
 
Preparing a PhD requires a high degree of self-motivation, great personal commitment and a desire to push back the boundaries of knowledge. Furthermore, doctoral training is a training-by-doing approach, each doctoral student receives personalized supervision by an experienced supervisor authorised to oversee academic research. The maximum number of PhD students per supervisor is limited to ensure the availability of each supervisor for his PhD students. In addition, a doctoral project can be undertaken only if all the material and financial conditions are met in order to carry it out.

For all these reasons, the number of doctoral students is and will be limited. The objective of Université Paris-Saclay is to attract and select the best doctoral candidates, for the best doctoral projects, according to demanding and accountable processes which could be a distinct assets for the professional future of doctors.

The attractiveness of doctoral training at the Université Paris-Saclay, first due to the tremendous research potential of the site and established the international recognition of its members but also its visibility (5500 doctoral candidates on the site, representing 10% of the PhD students in France), its readability (a unique doctorate charter, quality assurance) and its international openness (almost 50% of the PhD students are foreigners).

For PhD admissions : Assessment processes for selection of doctoral candidates are based on explicit and accountable criteria and methods, that are applied to all applicants regardless of the type of funding considered.

The selection panel assesses each applicant's research aptitudes as well as understanding of the innovative nature of their research subject, ability to establish it within the international scientific context and presentation skills.  The doctoral programme admission committee or selection panel advises as to the applicant's ability to carry out the full intent of the proposed doctoral project under the conditions provided, in particular within the host research unit or team and with the stated doctoral supervision.


The doctoral programme admission committee or selection panel also verifies whether the applicant's language  skills and aptitudes1 are adequate for integration into the research unit and due completion of the research planned.