Signup date: 31 Jul 2012 at 11:30am
Last login: 17 Jan 2013 at 1:15pm
Post count: 76
My internal examiner suggested I state each of my research questions and provide an overall discussion of how I answered these. I had summarised each Chapter, but the internal did not like it this way. I have to say it reads much better now and helps highlight the main findings of the research. I then have an overall discussion of the strengths and limitations of the entire project rather than individual chapters.
But again, this is one of those things that a lot of people may do differently.
How far into your PhD program are you? I went through a similar situation in my 2nd year. My recruitment rates were awful and overall I felt like I just wanted to quit. However, at this stage my supervisor was well aware of how I felt (I also has a lot going on in my private life). I did not tell her I had applied for jobs, but let her know I felt like quitting. She was so encouraging and supportive and so I decided to continue (which I am glad I did). In fact, whilst filling out applications I realised how much I had learned and the amount of new skills I had acquired. The time I had spent on my PhD certainly would not have been wasted if I had decided to leave. At the end of the day a PhD is not for everyone. I did name my supervisor as a reference as I assumed in most cases she would not be contacted prior to interview and if she was I could say I had told her how I was feeling and was looking to keep my options open. I am sure they could not remove your funding over this however I think it is best to have a chat with your supervisors about how you are feeling and they may offer you some advice.
I absolutely agree with the comments re external examiners- caution to anyone reading this thread who has not chosen an external. My external was an awful choice. The situation arose because my supervisor was from another country (where a viva is not required) and I was their first UK student. They wrongly assumed I was not allowed to know who my examiner was and went ahead along with my internal (who suggested the extenal) and appointed my external. I eventually got through to my supervisor that I was allowed to know but at this stage I had full draft done and was ready to submit (so had not referenced my external in thesis). Throughout my whole viva he referred to work he had done/books he had written (clearly annoyed I had not referenced him even though he was not a major researcher in my topic but rather more general concepts related to my topic). Needless to say in my revised version I have found a few places to squeeze his name in!!
I think it is important to be able to summarise your thesis clearly and be able to summarise the main findings. The opening questions are usually quite general to get you relaxed and the summary question is one that will come up. This may sound easy to do but under pressure it may be more difficult so it may be best to write this up and go over it a few times. If you any theory/framework guiding your work the examiner may test why this was chosen- be able to defend. I think it is important to try to highlights the strengths of work wherever possible. Be clear of your main conclusions and what your thesis contributes to knowledge.
In preparation for my viva my superviser arranged a mock viva with two other members of staff. This was a great idea and gave me a good indication of what the examiners may pick up on. It was great to get someone else's perspective. My superviser just kept saying "remember defend defend defend!" I brought in a copy of my thesis and tagged each chapter so it was easy to flick through. I had a list of page numbers where I had found mistakes that I brought with me just incase these were mentioned and to let the examiner know I had picked up on them.
Good luck in October and let is know how you get on :-)
Hi. I had a similar expereince in my viva in March. My examiner had clearly made up his mind and I felt I was not able to defend my thesis, but rather just got lectured about what was wrong with it and given no chance to speak. He also wanted me to change my research questions and 2 chapters of analyses. When I went to see my statistician he was shocked at what the examiner was requiring me to. My best advice for you is to wait until you get the examiners report, sit down and carefully go through each point, and plan how to address each point. It will seem a lot worse then it is right now. Once I did this, I realised the examiner was right on a lot of things, and it was easy enough to add in what he required. Yes, it feels I have lost some ownership of my PhD but I just wanted to get it done and re-submitted. I re-submitted in July and I can honestly say my thesis does look much better this time around. I have to admit that everytime I started working on my revisions I got so angry and it took a lot of effort to get going. My advice is start working on it as soon as you get your report- it will start to feel much better once you get something checked off the list and it will feel less daunting. I know it feels like the worst thing in the world right now but you will get there in th end. Keep your chin up.:-)
I know exactly how you are feeling- everyone keeps telling me I will be fine but nothing anyone says can reassure me now. I started a new job 1 month after my viva, but to be honest I have found myself so distracted by my thesis and by all the worry. That is one of the reasons my examiners said they gave me a resubmission- to give me more time for revisions because I was starting a new job (I wrongly mentioned my new job at end of viva which was a big mistake!). I have been messed around so much that I can't help but imagine that even if I do pass I will still have a long list of corrections. My external felt the contribution to knowledge was definietly there and all in all the thesis was 95% there- but I still can't help but worry and feel he only said this to make me feel a bit better at end of viva- I was clearly upset at the outcome. Not much I can do now only wait and hope for the best. This has been a horrible process and I can't wait for it be over. I am just trying to focus on how much better I will feel at my graduation after all this added pressure (providing I get that far!!). I can definietly see that my revised version is much improved so fingers crossed for the both of us!!
HI- I know exactly how you are feeling! I re-submitted at the end of July and I am waiting to hear my fate................
Whilst the guidelines in my uni state 6 weeks, I am assuming this may be a little longer due to summer holidays. I am starting to lose sleep again over this. I am so worried that even though I addressed every point in the examiners report that it may not be enough. I keep looking over my thesis and I think it does look well and read well, but then again I have worked at that long it is going to look that way to me. My supervisers assure me it is much better but these are the same supervisers who thought it was ok first time around. This is the worst feeling ever- I am so paranoid I will not pass. The examiners did not feel I needed another viva which was promising at the time but now I am beginning to think it may have better to have a chance to defend myself. However, I gather that if they decide to fail me I have to be offered the chance of another viva-which there would be no point in going to given they will have decided to fail me. AAAAAAhhhhhhhhhgggggg I can't stop worrying...................
This is the first time I have posted in this forum but I wanted to have a moan!!
I had my viva earlier in the year- I was given a revise & resubmit verdict.
Annoying thing number 1: They said this was because I was starting a new job & didn't want to put pressure on me to resubmit in four months. (I have just resubmitted after four months anyway!)
Number 2: I only received a joint examiners report and had to base my revisions on the points outlined within this- this was 1 page long and consisted of about 5 points I had to address. This was despite the guidelines for examiners document stating in black and white that a student should receive a list of revisions required from the internal.
Number 3: I was initially told only my internal wanted to see the resubmission- however, it was then discovered that this in fact was not allowed and the external would have to re-examine (didn't realise guidelines had changed apparently?). It was my external who had the most issues with my thesis so I am now panicking he will rip it apart again!
Number 4: Lack of support from certain people whose job it is to provide such support and respond to emails of concern.
I have to say my supervisors have been great throughout this process. I completely agree with the majority of the comments made by examiner. That was bad thing about my viva- it was more "why didn't you do this?" rather than allowing me to defend- I was basically preached to for an hour! I feel that my internal never liked my work anyway, and the external was the one type of person we never wanted examining my PhD. I can't believe my supervisor thought he/she was a good choice (I had no say on the matter what so ever!)
I didn't agree with a revise and resubmit based on a few comments that were clearly not going to take me a year to complete. I also can't believe I was basically penalised for starting a new job and changing location. I got started on my revisions the day after I received the report and have worked every evening and weekend to get them finished.
So, I resubmitted last week and I will be anxiously awaiting the verdict. I am hoping it will be clear how much work I have put in and I have outlined in a document how I addressed every point. It is just a little concerning that I didn't have much to go on.
Anyway, moan over
Keen to hear from anyone who has had similar expereince..............................8-)
Masters DegreesSearch For Masters Degrees
An active and supportive community.
Support and advice from your peers.
Your postgraduate questions answered.
Use your experience to help others.
Enter your email address below to get started with your forum account
Enter your username below to login to your account
An email has been sent to your email account along with instructions on how to reset your password. If you do not recieve your email, or have any futher problems accessing your account, then please contact our customer support.
or continue as guest