Too late to prepare for viva (tomorrow)


I left it far too late to prepare for the viva which is tomorrow. Other commitments got in the way, and despite trying to prepare since Thursday I don't feel I've achieved anything and I haven't managed to even read the whole thesis once. Reading back through the thesis I actually think it's pretty impressive, but I worry that I might forget sections in the moment or be asked a question I should have prepared an answer for.

I've worked so hard and feel like I've screwed things up at the final hurdle!



You'll probably remember a lot more than you think you will. Take your time when answering the questions. My viva's a long way off, but my supervisor told me that if you get a question that you just hadn't anticipated/can't answer in the moment, it's likely that that question will be incorporated in the suggestions for minor corrections (ie they won't fail you for not answering everything perfectly!). Good luck!


Well, at least you have read through parts of it once. That's better than nothing.

At this stage:
- Don't try to finish reading the whole thing, but do have a look at anything you think the examiners will pick up on.
- Try to stay calm
- Focus on practical prep e.g. put post it note markers in your thesis at the start of chapters or by key tables/figures so you can find them quickly and don't get flustered in the viva
- Set out whatever you need for tomorrow (clothes, paperwork) so you don't have to rush in the morning.
- Get a good night's sleep

Good luck!


The most important question you are probably likely to be asked is what is the main contribution of your thesis. Maybe have a think about that if you haven't already. Look at your conclusions again. Try to get it into a succinct form.

Good luck!


Good luck. Hope all goes well/ went well with the viva.

To be honest most of the preparation for my viva was an exercise in making me feel less nervous on the day! I prepared answers to all kinds of questions I didn't get asked! Probably the most useful thing I did was mark the start of each chapter so I could flick to it easily.


Good luck! Let us know how it goes


Hope it went ok!


Hi Everyone,

Thanks for your encouragement - went far better than I was expecting and passed with just a couple of typos to correct!

Got myself into a bit of a state over nothing thinking that they would expect me to remember every detail and challenge me on minor aspects, but they mainly asked me to explain my decisions and my contributions.

Dr. SL1990 :)


Many congratulations! :-))


Congratulations :)


Many congrats!


Well done and congratulations! Now I hope you are celebrating!

Avatar for Eds

Well done! Got a hangover?! ;)


Congratulations! That's amazing news! and reassuring to hear. I've just heard that my viva date is confirmed for 28 September, so 6 weeks exactly. I've got a very busy 3 weeks with a trip away and a conference, so will only have 3 weeks to prepare. I hope that's enough......


Congrats Dr SL1990! That's awesome news!