Research administration and progress

Supervision, variations to candidature, progress reports, confirmation and completion seminars, thesis information and student grievances.

Variations to candidature


Master of Arts by Research progress

Conversion to PhD

Students who have completed at least 6 months of a Master of Arts by Research and meet the entry requirements for the PhD program may apply to convert to the PhD. Please be aware that partial completion of a Masters by Research does not normally contribute to meeting the eligibility requirements for admission into the PhD. PhD candidature will normally be regarded as a continuation of the same program of study, and the PhD commencement date will be backdated to the commencement date of the Masters degree.

Progress reports

Masters by research students are required to submit six-monthly progress reports. These reports will be sent directly to students and must be completed with the student’s supervisor.

PhD progress

PhD candidates are required to submit a confirmation report at 12 months full-time candidature, a 2nd year progress report, and a completion report at 3 years full-time candidature.


After 6 months (full-time) probationary PhD enrolment, the Asia Institute sends a Confirmation Report Form to prompt the candidate to commence preparation for the confirmation process. Confirmation is a key point in candidature. Its purpose is to determine whether or not work to date on the PhD research proposal indicates a strong likelihood that it will result in a high quality thesis, completed in the required time.

Progress reports

PhD candidates must submit annual progress reports. The first is submitted at the time of confirmation, and the final report is submitted prior to thesis submission. These reports will be sent directly to students and must be completed with the student’s supervisor.

PhD advisory committees

From 2007 the Faculty introduced the annual PhD advisory committees in line with the rest of the University. The goal of this is for academic staff to meet with students to assist with progress in the PhD. Where possible the timing of these committees and most of the written requirements are integrated with the School of Graduate Research annual progress reports.

PhD completion seminar

The Completion Seminar formalises and extends the current requirement for a public presentation in the year prior to submitting a thesis for examination. All PhD candidates are expected to take part in a Completion Seminar of their research findings at the University.

Thesis submission

Masters by Research and PhD

Three months prior to submission, Masters by Research and PhD candidates must submit an 80-word summary to the Melbourne Graduate School of Research (MSGR). This will activate the process of nominating examiners – students are not informed of the names of the nominated examiners, however may name individuals whom they do not wish to examine their thesis.

  • For more information on submission and examination please see the Graduate Research Hub Examination overview web page. The Graduate Research Hub Preparing my thesis web pages also outline all of the requirements for your thesis

Thesis extension

Masters by Research and PhD

Masters by Research and PhD students must apply for an extension to their candidature through their Advisory Committee meeting. A Progress Review form must be completed and submitted at this time along with an updated Thesis Completion timeline, (as part of “Attachment A”). These reports will be posted directly to students three months prior to their expected completion date.


Students who are experiencing difficulties with their supervision arrangements or any other aspect of their candidature which cannot be resolved through consultation can seek advice from their advisory panel, the Research team at the Faculty of Arts, the Melbourne Graduate School of Research or the Graduate Student Association. Matters may also be referred to the Director of the Asia Institute. Grievances that cannot be resolved satisfactorily through this approach can be formally referred to the Dean of the Faculty of Arts, via the General Manager of the Faculty, or to the Pro-Vice Chancellor (Graduate Research) of the Melbourne School of Graduate Research, via the School’s General Manager.


The Asia Institute and the University take instances of plagiarism very seriously. The University Policy is available on the Academic integrity website.

Allegations of plagiarism and academic misconduct

  • Where it is alleged that a student has been involved in plagiarism, this shall be reported to the Asia Institute’s Director, as per the University policy
  • The student shall be notified of the allegation within 14 days of the offence and will be invited to meet with a panel to discuss the allegation. The student will have 10 days to respond to this notification
  • If the allegation is proven, the panel may award a zero mark for that assessment task or a fail for the subject
  • The matter will also be reported to the Dean of the Faculty of Arts, who must report the outcome to the Academic Registrar of the University
  • Students have the right to appeal decisions made by the panel and may bring a support person to the panel meeting (this person will not be allowed to participate in the meeting). For advice students may also visit the Student Union Misconduct web page