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First Year Registration exercise

Candidates for doctoral degrees will undertake a form of examination following the completion of their first year for full-time students or second year for part-time students.  The form of the examination will differ between departments and faculties but many candidates will undertake what is referred to as a registration exercise; an exercise by which the department or faculty can formally register the candidate for a research degree. Candidates usually have to produce a short thesis or report which will be examined by two examiners and examined orally.  

On some PhD programmes the registration exercise will comprise the undertaking of an MPhil degree course or a Certificate of Postgraduate Study. Some candidates may be enrolled for the registration exercise.

The examination will have three possible outcomes:

  1. the candidate passes and is formally registered for a research degree
  2. the candidate is required to undertake a further registration exercise because they were not able to demonstrate that they were ready to be formally registered for the degree for which they are a candidate.  This will normally happen only once.
  3. the candidate fails the registration exercise.  If the candidate does not pass the registration exercise the Degree Committee may recommend that the candidate registers for a lower degree (MSc, MLitt or MPhil) or that the candidate is removed from the Register of Graduate Students (withdrawn from study).

The registration exercise is useful in that it formally highlights a candidate's strengths and areas which require further development.