Signup date: 28 Nov 2012 at 3:13am
Last login: 10 Apr 2013 at 5:42pm
Post count: 15
Got minor corrections in October 2012 and these were approved two days ago (8 April 2013). So although I had to wait more than a year between submission and The End, partially because my subject, a politically dangerous branch of Iranian studies, hadn't been done at all (in my supervisor's words: "there is no field") and prospective examiners kept saying 'this is not my expertise', I guess it's now... done?
University regulations are still a mystery to me, and obviously my experience is limited to one instance (mine). This is kind of obvious, but since your report appears (from what I gather, which I hope is true) to be quite detailed, I guess after you've done the final bit you can go over it and make sure you've 'got' each and every 'thingie' they wanted? Oh, another thing. After I finished my corrections, I was asked to submit one copy of the corrected thesis with corrections in red font, and one without (just all black font). So I had to go back and redden all the changes. They asked me to do this instead of producing a correction report. No idea if this will be required of you, but it's possible that this will show to them very clearly that you have addressed the corrections. I just thought I'd throw the idea on the table! Anyway, good luck with the home stretch. Rah rah go team! -A.
Dropped in to see how you were doing. So, it seems that you can get your supervisor to have a look at, and approve, your corrections, right? That sounds good. (I was officially 'cut off' from my supervisor). It's tedious, I know, especially after working so hard and then having to plunge back into it - ech. Lots of good vibes to you, and I certainly hope they don't make you wait for ages after this. I think they've already used up all their quota of making you wait! Anyway, good luck... go team! *pompoms*
Hello again. I finally received the correction list. It's mostly a matter of acknowledging a certain theoretical stance that the external is infatuated with. I'll have to spew it into my thesis, consequently excising chunks of original research because of word limit. I'm terrified that the external will claim that even though I tried, I didn't get it EXACTLY right. Because I'll try as hard as possible to grasp what the external means and comply: I want my PhD so badly. But any text is interpretable, and the external's intent may differ from my interpretation thereof, no matter how painstaking and earnest.
Pineapple, I've followed your gruelling saga and I'm glad to hear that the geologically slow wheels of your university eventually ground into motion. We are now in the same boat, so as I said earlier, let's make a pact of blood to get cracking on this endeavour with grim determination! Good luck!
Bewildered, I never demanded cast-iron guarantees or literally thought they consciously wanted to ruin my Christmas etc. I merely object to the 'no feedback' plus 'one strike and you're out' policy. I'll try my absolute best to do what they want, but why insist on failing me for not quite nailing 100% of the external's intent conveyed through a text that I'm not allowed to ask about? With any text, chances of capturing 100% of its author's intent are minimal - negligible. Add the prohibition of showing them my corrections and asking if that's ok and being given a chance to rectify any misinterpretations, and that is a recipe for failure. Odds are against me. How is that reasonable or necessary? They loved my work and kept praising it on many levels. Why fail me over a technicality after I've spent years producing research which they love? That is why I am grumbling. The no-feedback and one-strike rule is unnecessarily cruel, especially at this late stage. I hope you understand.
Thanks to everyone for responding.
Yay! You waited so long without falling apart. Very strong of you. Glad to hear that the sluggish characters finally deigned to contact you! It must be such a relief. Hurrah for Pineapple and may you vanquish the minor corrections with utmost celerity, thereby paving the way for never being a student again. How nice that would be... one can only imagine...
Aha, they finally came through. What a long wait! I've been keeping track of your saga and getting angry on your behalf, so I'm relieved to see that they had the decency to contact you finally. Well, now we're in the same boat with minor corrections. Let's make a pact of blood to get cracking on them and have them finished and OVER soon! Lots of good wishes - Ants.
Please attend the interview. It's horrid and stressful but please take the plunge. If they reject you it will be because these university people have drained you so much and it won't have been your fault. Go in there proud that you're bravely facing this challenge despite how you feel. Best of luck - Ants (the student who isn't allowed to cease being a student - EVER).
Oh Pineapple. When I finally got a chance to come back to the forum I thought I'd find good news about you. Instead they're still keeping you on tenterhooks. It's inconsiderate, inefficient and cruel. I'm beginning to suspect that you might be at my university, which is also slow and inconsiderate. They made me wait seven months for my viva, then held it on my birthday, didn't wish me a happy birthday, and two months later still haven't sent me my list of 'minor corrections', thereby keeping me in limbo and unable to get cracking on this nonsense. Yes, maybe you and I are dealing with the same cold slow people.
Sending you lots and lots of good vibes and best wishes for this outcome (and for these heartless creatures to get off their keisters).
Good luck from a fellow academic sufferer! -Ants.
Hello! Thanks to all of you for your input and sorry about the delay in replying.
I suspect my university is a bit weird. For example, most people on this forum and other similar websites report that they got handed the list of corrections at the viva, but I was told that first all sorts of bureaucratic things have to happen and then I'll be sent it. In fact I haven't received the corrections yet, so I'm still in limbo, and the internal examiner (my 'point of contact' now) says he doesn't know anything because it's now in the hands of some office. Most people from other universities say that the 'minor corrections' outcome is called 'pass with minor corrections' and that people who receive that outcome are told 'congratulations Dr X' at the viva; but my university phrases it as the PhD being withheld *subject to* minor corrections, so I didn't even get the consolation prize of 'congratulations Dr X'. And my supervisor told me that I am 'cut off' from him after the viva, but that he's willing to give my corrections 'an informal read-through'. The examiners themselves appeared unwilling to concede anything other than the corrections being 'one strike and you're out'. To be honest I find everything very cold, formal, slow and needlessly cruel. They'll probably leave my corrections until after the holiday now: having ruined my birthday they're intent on ruining my Christmas and New Year too.
Anyway. I sincerely hope that you guys are right about them wanting us to pass, and I'll take the suggestion about getting my supervisor's approval, though since he thinks we're 'cut off' he probably won't allow me to state that he approved anything. In fact, before I submitted he 'wasn't allowed' to say whether he thought the thing was submittable or any good, because it's meant to be my 'independent decision'. It's as if policy requires no aid and comfort to the enemy - sorry, the student.
Thanks again! -Ants.
Been reading through this. Why do they keep torturing Pineapple? It strikes me as a mystical marriage of needless cruelty and equally needless dawdling (but of course I don't know their detailed situation, and they don't seem eager to allow anybody to know their detailed situation). Lots and lots of good vibes to Pineapple. Please don't give up, though I know how it feels to have had enough, many times over, long ago. You've done a huge amount of work and these hibernators have to get back to you at some point. Good vibes, good vibes, good vibes.
Are these vitamins? (sprout) Here you go. Cheering for you - Ants (also stuck in seemingly endless academic tunnel).
Hello everyone. I had my viva about a month and a half ago, seven months after submitting the wretched thesis, and on my birthday - not that they wished me happy birthday after I'd crossed continents to return to my old uni. The examiners appeared to like my thesis and said 'this is a major contribution to knowledge' at regular intervals. They gave me 'minor corrections', which in my university means a three-month deadline which begins when we receive the list of corrections (I still haven't). The diagnosis is that the external has a more political angle than I do, and therefore wants to scent-mark my thesis with that angle in the manner of dogs marking territory, causing me to chop off chunks of original research to make space for this well-known political stuff because I'm right at the edge of my word limit. My supervisor and the head of department say that 'minor corrections' is the best that can be hoped for in this type of department (really involved, wordy, nebulous humanities waffle, you know). They both seemed very happy and, yes, physically bouncy, and were congratulating me, and so were (oddly) the examiners. But I am terrified and I feel that I only have a slim chance of not failing.
The problem is that this is not a matter of correcting typos, but of doing something more cerebral. However, I am not allowed any feedback as I attempt to deal with these 'corrections', and I only get one shot at them: if I do my absolute best to interpret and implement whatever it is they want, and they decide that I've got it a bit wrong, they fail me. This is what I was told (not in those exact words).
I realise this is not the worst possible outcome (it's the one right after 'pass without corrections', which people insist never happens in my department), but after all this work and even after having my efforts praised to the skies, I can still fail if someone else decides that I have incorrectly interpreted something rather abstract that resides in their heads. In other words, no matter how hard I try, I cannot control whether I fail or not.
I would be immensely grateful for any thoughts, information, feedback etc (I don't know what etc can be in this context - cupcakes?) about this admittedly rather gloomy situation. I haven't heard back from my university and I can't pop in and check or keep them on their toes (which are probably webbed) since I live on another continent because of my husband's job. I am in the dark and normally the dark doesn't scare me - but this time it most certainly does.
Sorry to be dramatic and probably spectacularly incoherent: this is truly messing with my brain. Thanks to anyone patient enough to read this and kind enough to reply.
Tremulously - Ants the eternal student.
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