Thesis submission and examination FAQs

I have been asked to re-register and pay a continuation fee, is this correct?

All postgraduate researchers in thesis awaited status are required to register online at www.my.bham.ac.uk. If you have not submitted your thesis in a previous academic year, you will be required to pay a continuation fee for the new academic year.  The annual continuation fee is £216 in 2018-19.

Who do I need to notify if I have changed my intended date of submission?

You should advise the Research Student Administration team via Student Help.

Where can I get my thesis bound?

The University’s Print Me shop offers printing and binding services.  You can visit Print Me in person in University Centre or email your thesis to them at printme@contacts.bham.ac.uk

Where do I take my theses for submission once they are bound?

You should take them to the Student Hub in the Aston Webb Building, R7 on the campus map.

Do I need my supervisor’s permission before I submit my thesis?

You cannot submit your thesis until after the end of the minimum period of registration and must submit your thesis before the end of your maximum period of registration. Your supervisor is required to sign the intention to submit a research degree thesis form to acknowledge your proposed submission date. It is your decision when to submit your thesis. However, you are advised to consider the feedback from your supervision when making this decision.

When can I submit my thesis?

The end of the minimum period of registration is the earliest date on which you can submit your thesis for examination. You can check your minimum period of registration on the registration pages on www.my.bham.ac.uk.

The end of your maximum period of registration is the latest date for submission of your thesis.

How do I apply for an extension to my submission deadline?

It is expected that you will submit your theses within your maximum period of registration or by the deadline for submitting your revised or corrected thesis. In exceptional circumstances you can apply for an extension to these deadlines.  It is important that you make your request approximately 2 months before the end of the maximum registration period or as soon as possible for a revised or corrected thesis using the extension request form.

The extension request form is available from the extensions webpages. 

Evidence to support the request must be attached to the request form.

  • Part A - to be completed by the Postgraduate Researcher
  • Part B - to be completed by supervisor and passed to the Head of School (or nominee)
  • Part C - to be completed by the Head of School (or nominee) and sent to Research Student Administration

Why do I need to submit a Notice of Intention to Submit a Research Degree Thesis form?

Receipt of the Notice of Intention to Submit a Research Degree Thesis form by the Research Student Administration Team triggers the nomination of examiners process.  It is recommended that to avoid delays to the examination of your thesis that you submit your Intention to Submit a Research Degree Thesis three months before your proposed submission date to allow time for the examiners to be approached and their nomination confirmed.

Can I exceed the word count?

A thesis that exceeds the maximum number of words will not be accepted for examination unless permission to exceed the stated word count has been granted by the Research Progress & Awards Sub Panel. Permission to exceed the stated word count is only granted in exceptional circumstances. If you consider that you will not be able to meet the permitted word limit, you are advised to discuss this with your supervisor at an early stage. 

Applications to exceed the stated word count should be made in writing to your supervisor and should include how many additional words you require and the academic reasons to support your request. Your supervisor is required to comment on your application and indicate whether or not they support your request and then submit the request to the Research Student Administration Team.  The Research Student Administration Team will notify you of the outcome of your request once the decision has been made by the Research Progress and Awards Sub Panel.

What forms do I need to submit with my thesis?

Can a friend/colleague submit my thesis on my behalf?

Providing you have completed and signed all the relevant forms and your thesis has been soft bound securely, you may arrange for a friend or colleague to submit the thesis to the Student Hub in the Aston Webb on your behalf.

How do I submit to Turnitin?

You should consult your School PGR administrator for information on how to submit your thesis for the plagiarism check. 

How many copies of my thesis do I have to submit?

Normally two copies, one for each examiner.  You will be advised if additional copies are required.

Why has my thesis not be sent for examination when I submitted it weeks ago?

A thesis cannot be sent to the examiners until the Research Student Administration team is in receipt of:

  • completed nomination of examiners form and the examiners approved for appointment;
  • confirmation from your School that the plagiarism check has been completed and the Research Student Administration team advised that the thesis is cleared for examination (this can take up to two weeks from the date of your submission). 

What is the word count for an Alternative Thesis format?

Normal word limits as set out in Regulation 7.4.2(d) apply for alternative format theses.  

Who will contact me about my viva?

It is the responsibility of the internal examiner or the chairperson of the viva (if no internal examiner and two external examiners are appointed) to make all the arrangements for the oral examination. 

You will normally be given at least two weeks notice of the date, time, venue and the names of those attending. You should make the internal examiner aware of any dates on which it would be particularly difficult for you to be available for the oral examination - any dates you indicate as problematic will be taken into consideration, but the day chosen will depend on the examiners’ other commitments. 

Can I take my thesis into the viva?

Yes, you can take your thesis into the viva.

Can I take a recorder into my viva?

The viva cannot be recorded or broadcast in any format.

Will my supervisor be present at the viva?

Your supervisor cannot be present at the viva but should be available on the day and may be present at the end of the viva when the examiners advise their provisional recommendation.

When will I receive the outcome of the examination?

Once the examiners’ reports have been received by the Research Student Administration team, you will be sent a letter confirming the outcome together with a copy of their reports and providing a new deadline for the completion of any revisions or corrections required.

What are the recommendations open to the examiners?

The examiners may recommend that:

  • The degree is awarded
  • The degree is awarded subject to completion or minor or major corrections
  • You should revise and resubmit your thesis for the same or lower qualification
  • Award a lower degree with/without minor/major corrections
  • The thesis is rejected and no award made

What is the time limit for completion of minor corrections?

The normal timeframe for completion of minor corrections is one month but examiners may give a longer period. The date for submission of your corrected thesis will be given to you in the examination outcome letter sent to you by Research Student Administration. 

What is the time limit for completion of major corrections?

The normal timeframe for completion of major corrections is six months but examiners may give a longer period. The date for submission of your corrected thesis will be given to you in the examination outcome letter sent to you by Research Student Administration. 

Do I need to submit the same forms with the corrected thesis as I did with the first submission?

For minor/major corrections, you only need to include a signed authorised declaration in the front of the thesis.

Can I email my corrected thesis to the examiners to check?

The letter confirming the outcome of your thesis examination will advise if the examiners have agreed to check an electronic copy of your thesis. 

Is there a fee required for submitting corrections?

There is no fee for submission of a corrected thesis following minor or major corrections.

What is the timeframe for revise and resubmission?

The normal timeframe for resubmission is one year but examiners may give a longer period. The date for resubmission of your corrected thesis will be given to you in the examination outcome letter sent to you by Research Student Administration. You are required to pay a resubmission fee and a full and further examination will take place.

What date do I put on the title page of my resubmitted thesis?

The date on the title page of your thesis should be the month and year of your initial submission for examination. If you are required to make corrections to your thesis, this date should not be changed.

Do I have to put my thesis through Turnitin again?

For minor/major corrections, you do not need to submit your thesis again to Turnitin.  If the examiners recommend revise and resubmit, you will need to submit your revised thesis to Turnitin.

When and where do I pay the resubmission fee?

If the examiners recommend that you revise and resubmit your thesis, you are required to pay a resubmission fee when you submit your revised thesis.  This is currently £180 and you can pay this via cheque or card on submission at the Student Hub in the Aston Webb building, or the resubmission fee can be paid in advance of resubmission of your thesis via the Online Shop

What forms do I need to submit with my resubmitted thesis?

A revised and resubmitted thesis is subject to a full examination and you must submit the following forms:

Do I have to have another oral examination following revise and resubmit?

A viva examination is compulsory for all resubmitted doctoral theses.  For a resubmitted masters thesis, you may be required to attend an oral examination and the internal examiner will advise you if this is the case.

I am not happy with the outcome of my examination, what are my options?

You are advised to discuss the outcome of your thesis examination with your supervisor.  You may wish to consider submitting an appeal.  Information of the appeals process can be found on the appeals webpages.
You may also wish to consult Guild Advice

Where do I get my final thesis bound?

Hard binding is undertaken by Blissetts and you can submit your thesis for binding electronically via the Thesis Online webpages. A signed author’s declaration must be included in the file you submit with your thesis.

What date to I put on the spine of my final thesis?

This should be the year of your graduation ceremony. The month and year of the original submission should be entered on the title page.