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Viva Examination

These regulations are made subject to the General Academic Regulations of the School and the Conditions of Registration. They apply to every student taking a programme of study leading to the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Koya University.

The thesis will consider for examination when:
  1. it will be either a record of original work or of an ordered and critical exposition of existing knowledge and will provide evidence that the field has been surveyed thoroughly. It is form a distinct contribution to the knowledge of the subject and afford evidence of originality by the discovery of new facts and/or by the exercise of independent critical power;

  2. It gives a critical assessment of the relevant literature, describe the method of research and its findings, and include a discussion on those findings, and indicate in what respects they appear to the candidate to advance the study of the subject; and so demonstrate a deep and synoptic understanding of the field of study;

  3. it is demonstrate research skills;

  4. it will be of a standard to merit publication in whole or in part or in a revised form (for example, as a monograph or as a number of articles in learned journals); and

  5. not exceed 100,000 words (including footnotes but excluding bibliography and appendices). In appropriate circumstances the Postgraduate Affairs Office may grant permission for a thesis to exceed the normal length.

    PhD examinations

  6. The Research Degrees Subcommittee will appoint the examiners, having paid particular attention to their independence, expertise and relevant experience. It will appoint two, or exceptionally three, examiners for each candidate. The examiners are required to be experts in the field of the thesis and to be able to make an independent assessment of the student and the thesis. There will be an examiner appointed from one of the school of Koya University and a second examiner appointed from outside the University. With the permission of the Postgraduate Affairs Office both examiners may be appointed from within the University, or both may be appointed from outside the University. Only one examiner may be appointed from within Koya University. The candidate's supervisors or advisers may not be examiners.

  7. Assessment will be by submission of a thesis (as defined above) and an oral examination, which will be conducted in English (unless the Postgraduate Affairs Office has given permission for it to be conducted in another language). In highly exceptional circumstances connected with the candidate and with the permission of the appropriate Pro-Director, the School may suspend the requirement for an oral examination.

  8. Candidates must attend for examination at a place and time the School determines. They must bring with them an additional copy of the thesis paginated in the same way as that submitted for examination.

  9. Normally no later than one week before the examination the examiners will prepare and exchange independent preliminary written reports on the thesis to assist in conducting the oral examination (or the preparation of the joint report in those cases where no oral examination is held).

  10. The oral examination will normally be held in Koya. The Postgraduate Affairs Office may, however, agree to different arrangements.

  11. Unless the candidate indicates otherwise on the entry form, the supervisor(s) will be invited to attend the oral examination as an observer. The supervisor(s) do(es) not have the right to take part in the examination but may contribute if invited to do so by the examiners with the agreement of the candidate. Otherwise the oral examination will be held in private.

  12. After any oral examination, the examiners will prepare a joint final report. It will indicate whether the thesis meets the requirements specified in these regulations and will include a statement of the examiners' reasons for their judgement of the candidate's performance against the criteria. The examiners may, at their discretion, consult the supervisor(s) before completing their report.

  13. Copies of the reports will be sent to the faculty scientific committee who will forward a copy of it to the candidate together with the preliminary reports unless the examiners have specified otherwise.

  14. Examiners have the right to make comments in confidence to the appropriate Pro-Director in a separate report. Such comments should not normally be concerned with the performance of the candidate but may cover other matters that they wish to draw to the attention of the School.

  15. If the examiners are unable to agree on the result of the examination, the Postgraduate Affairs Office Manager will advise them and if necessary will refer the matter to the University Council, who will determine the action to be taken.

    Outcome of the PhD examination

  16. The options open to examiners in determining the result of the examination are as follows:

    1. If the thesis meets the criteria set out in these regulations and the candidate satisfies the examiners in the oral examination, they will recommend that the candidate should be awarded the PhD degree. The thesis may contain minor errors deemed by the examiners to have no academic impact.

    2. If the thesis otherwise meets the criteria but requires minor amendments, and the candidate satisfies the examiners in the oral examination, they may require him/her to make amendments they specify. The examiners shall indicate the length of time permitted to the candidate to make the required amendments, which shall not be longer than three months. The candidate must submit the amended thesis to both examiners or one of their number nominated by the examiners for confirmation that the amendments are satisfactory.

    3. If the thesis, though inadequate, seems of sufficient merit to justify such action, the examiners may allow the candidate to re-present it in a revised form for re-examination. They will indicate the length of time they consider he/she will need to complete the revisions, which shall be between three and eighteen months. Examiners may not, however, make such a decision without having submitted the candidate to an oral examination. The examiners may at their discretion exempt the candidate from a further oral examination. On resubmission of a thesis under this regulation, examiners must reach a final decision according to regulations 16.1, 16.2, 16.4, 16.5 or 16.6.

    4. If the thesis meets the criteria but the candidate fails to satisfy the examiners at the oral examination, they may allow him/her to re-present the same thesis and take a further oral examination within a period specified by them not exceeding 18 months.

    5. If, after completion of the oral examination or re-examination for the PhD, the examiners decide that a candidate has not reached the standard required under regulations 1-5 above, they will consider whether the thesis does, or might be able to, satisfy the criteria for the award of the MPhil degree. If they so decide, they will submit a report that shows either how the criteria for the MPhil degree are met or what action the student needs to take to meet them. Examiners will have discretion to waive the thesis length for the MPhil degree if appropriate. Thereafter the following conditions and procedures will apply:

      1. (a) The candidate will be told that he/she has been unsuccessful in the examination for the PhD degree, but has reached the standard required for the award of the MPhil, or with amendment to the thesis may be able to satisfy the criteria for the MPhil.

      2. (b) A candidate considered for the award of the MPhil degree under this regulation will not be required to submit the thesis, as required under the regulations for the MPhil degree, or to undergo a further oral examination, but will be required to fulfil the requirements for the MPhil in all other respects.

      3. (c)  A candidate offered an MPhil degree under these regulations must make any amendments the examiners require within a period they specify, but not exceeding twelve months. The candidate must submit the amended thesis to the examiners who will decide whether he/she has completed the amendments to their satisfaction.

    6. The examiners may determine that the candidate has not satisfied them in the examination for either the MPhil or the PhD. They will not, however, save in very exceptional circumstances, make such a decision without having submitted the candidate to an oral examination.

  17. Students have the right of appeal against a decision taken under regulations 16.3, 16.4 or 16.5, in accordance with the Appeals Regulations for Research Students.

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