Preparing for your Viva


This session is delivered as part of by the University of East Anglia (UEA) Online Training Series.

Description

The session aims to increase PGR students’ understanding of the oral examination process, to understand how an examiner will assess their thesis, to provide practical advice on how to prepare effectively and to build confidence in the student's ability to perform well at the viva. The session may be of most benefit to students who are within a few months of being examined, but it can also help to increase the knowledge and confidence of students at earlier stages of their PhD journey.

Access Instructions

Bookings for these online courses are via: https://bookwhen.com/ueaonlinetraining

The demand for these courses is high and you are advised to book your place as soon as the booking system goes live.

Information on the booking dates will be circulated by email.

Indicative Student Feedback for this Session

Simon's training sessions always leave me feeling inspired, more positive about my thesis and eager to continually improve as an academic researcher. The everyday life testimonies of "Preparing for you Viva" were tremendously useful. The session really fulfilled the purpose of demystifying the whole process of defending the PhD thesis. Now it is clearer to me how I can approach practical challenges and prepare for the big day. I’m even starting to think it can actually turn out to be an enjoyable experience (Univ. of East Anglia; International Development).

Very pragmatic lively and enlightening! The presentation is in simple language and has practical examples. This - and all the earlier sessions - are by far the most satisfying and illuminating training sessions I have had and I am glad I had the opportunity to attend (Sussex).

You are a genius at articulating what is needed for quite possibly the scariest thing about your PhD. Talking about the positive agenda and making a plan to do this is the best advice I have heard. Hearing your own experience was invaluable. And most definitely I would take up the offer of a mock viva. This was a ‘flipping brill’ session (Kent).

Thank you – this really demystified the process and [has] given me so much more confidence that I can do this! It’s also nice to know that the examiners are basically on my side (Sussex).

[This was] really helpful training – really put my mind at rest that the viva is meant to be a positive experience and an opportunity for you to justify and promote your work. As long as you are prepared with responses to some of the weaker areas, there's no reason they will hold you back. I feel a lot more confident about the viva now (Surrey).

Facilitators

  • Simon Watts

    Dr Simon Watts is a Postgraduate Research Training Coordinator for the Faculty of Social Sciences in University of East Anglia.  He teaches the majority of the sessions on the UEA Online Training Series which are open to Ulster PhD Researchers as part of the overall Researcher Development Programme. The Online Training Series offers research and professional training skills training for PhD Researchers in a ‘live-taught’ online format.  Training session are delivered via a virtual classroom on Tuesday evenings between 7pm-9pm.

The Vitae Researcher Development Framework

This session maps on to Domain B of the Vitae Framework: Personal effectiveness which includes the sub-domain areas of:

  • B1: Personal qualities
  • B2: Self-management
  • B3: Professional and Career Development
The Vitae Researcher Development Framework