HDR Examinations - FAQs for staff

How do I nominate examiners?

Examiners need to be nominated in the HDR Examinations online system. You will receive an email when your candidate gives notice of their intention to submit the thesis and, if you have not already commenced contacting potential examiners, this is your prompt to do so.

When do I need to nominate examiners?

You need to have nominated suitable examiners before the thesis is lodged for examination. In fact, HDR Examinations will not permit the candidate to lodge their thesis for examination until examiners have been nominated. Any delay to the nomination impacts directly on the candidate.

You should commence the nomination process well in advance of the anticipated date of thesis submission.

Who can be nominated as an examiner?

  1. Examiners must:
    • have experience as examiners of higher degrees by research
    • be currently active in the field
    • be impartial with no conflict of interest
    • be independent experts with international standing in the field of research
    • have a qualification at least equivalent to the degree being examined.
  2. Examiners must not:
    • have been a staff member or graduate in the past five years
    • have had close associations with the candidate or the candidature
    • be a staff member of an institution at which any of the candidate's external/research supervisors are based, or at which the candidate has spent part or all of their candidature.
  3. Nominations:
    • are the responsibility of the supervisor and not the candidate
    • must be provided before the thesis is submitted
    • a minimum of four names must be provided
    • at least two nominees must be from outside Australia - in rare cases where this may not be possible, an explanation must be provided in writing
    • a current street address and phone number for courier delivery must be provided, as well as an email address.
    • if four experienced examiners at the required level cannot be found, it is possible to nominate up to one examiner without experience of examining at the level of the degree being sought. Such examiners are required to outline their qualifications and previous examination and supervision experience, and may only examine up to the level of the highest degree they have been awarded.
  4. Supervisors must:
    • informally contact nominees before nominating them for approval
    • advise nominees they may not be formally selected by the Committee
    • advise nominees that Deakin uses an online thesis examination system and that they will be given access to a PDF copy of the thesis
    • advise nominees that reports are to be sent only via the online examination system no more than six weeks from the date of receipt of the thesis (late reports may miss out on being used in the determination of the result)
    • check that nominees are still available if the thesis is delayed
    • ensure that all details on the nomination form are competed - incomplete nominations will not be accepted and will delay the examination.

These criteria are also available in the appropriate section of HDR Examinations.

May candidates be involved in nominating examiners?

It is the responsibility of the principal supervisor to contact potential examiners and that of the Head of School to formally endorse the nomination.

However, candidates should be encouraged to discuss potential examiners with their supervisor(s).

I am about to complete the Nomination of Examiners, do I need to enter all four examiners at once?

No. You can save and exit at any time before you submit your final nominations.

Can I communicate with the nominated examiners about the examination during the examination?

No. All communications in relation to the examination must be conducted via an HDR Adviser in Deakin Research.

When can my student submit their thesis?

Students are unable to upload their thesis until the examiners are nominated by the Supervisor, and approved and selected by the Chair of the Thesis Examination Sub-Committee. Once these steps are complete your student will receive an email notifying them that they may now log on and upload their thesis. Unfortunately it is not an option to do this until all steps up until this point are complete.

I believe there is a conflict of interest with a student who I am supervising or is in my school?

If you believe you need to delegate responsibility to another staff member please contact our HDR Adviser.

What do I do if I am the supervisor but I am also the Head of School?

If you are the primary supervisor of a candidate, you need to select either the Deputy Head of School, Acting Head of School or Assoc Head of School (Research). The system will list alternative Head of School nominees for you to select to act as Head of School for this examination.

What are the possible outcomes of my student's examination?

The recommendations an examiner can make and what they mean are explained on our examination outcomes page.

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