The viva feels like, and in many ways is, the end of the PhD process. It is the culmination of years of research, writing, editing and polishing, re-reading and owning all aspects of your work. In one sense, it is an end to this stage of your work, but it is also a turning point in your work, and your development as a researcher. For comments on the shape of a viva, see Trafford and Leshem (2002). Universities have several categories of response following PhD assessment, and these usually range between: Award without any modifications Award with minor modifications Award with modifications that could take up to 6 months (some niversities do not have this central category, and so decisions may seem either very generous or a little unkind) Major modifications (also known as resubmission in some instances) Fail (usually with opportunities for resubmission).
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