First Cotutelle Doctorate in Bremen and at the University of Guelph in Canada

Rebecca Breau

The University of Bremen and the University of Guelph in Canada have been linked for several years through a strategic partnership that includes both research and student exchanges. In the health sciences, Rebecca Breau became the first doctoral student in a cotutelle programme to successfully defend her thesis in August. The cotutelle process is a binational doctorate supervised by two universities from different countries and recognised as a jointly awarded doctoral degree. 

In her doctoral thesis, Rebecca Breau researched the factors that improve motor abilities, physical fitness and cognitive function in young children ("Accelerometers in young children: Methodological considerations and subsequent cross-sectional and longitudinal associations with motor abilities, physical fitness, and cognitive function"). For her thesis, she spent a year doing research at the Leibniz Institute for Prevention Research and Epidemiology (BIPS) in Bremen, where she was supervised by Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Ahrens and Dr. Mirko Brandes from BIPS. At the University of Guelph, supervision was taken over by Dr Lori Vallis, a research scientist at the department Guelph Family Health Study. A very successful professional cooperation, according to all involved.

For Prof. Dr. Eva-Maria Feichtner, Vice Rector for International Relations at the University of Bremen, this joint doctorate is convincing proof of deeper cooperation between the two universities and of the potential for more projects to emerge from it.