Year 3

Progress Reviews

By this juncture, you should be in the final stages of your project and have the majority of your thesis written.

PhD candidates are requested to provide the following information:

  1. A current version of your thesis proposal or outline;
  2. Your most recent draft chapter;
  3. A timeline and milestones for the completion of the thesis; and
  4. Where appropriate, a table of contents for the thesis together with the completion status of each section.

Students who exceed 3.0 years of their candidature can be scheduled for a progress review every 6 months until submission.


Students might get the opportunity to present at local and international conferences. Eligible students could apply for the Postgraduate Research Student Support (PRSS) Scheme for funding to assist in presenting their research at international conferences outside of Australia.

In addition, the School offers travel grants to help defray the cost of conference attendance for some research students enrolled in the School. Please refer to the Travel Grant section for further information and guidelines.

Final Seminar Presentation

In some departments, PhD candidates are expected to give a final seminar presentation at one of the departmental seminar series at this stage in their candidature.

Writing your Thesis

You should be completing your data analysis and writing up your discussion and conclusion at this stage. It is also a good idea to finalise your abstract, introduction, methodology and literature review. Your supervisor should also be reviewing and editing your thesis with you.

Students should check out the Learning Centre for support on thesis writing and other academic skills.

Extension of Candidature

The minimum length of candidature for the PhD program is three years and the maximum is four years (full-time equivalent). The minimum length of candidature for the Masters by Research program is one and a half years and the maximum is two years (full-time equivalent).

If you are unable to submit your thesis within the maximum time allowed due to factors or occasions outside your control, you need to apply for an extension of candidature. Any request for an extension of one semester for enrolment over two years full-time equivalent (Masters) or four years full-time equivalent (PhD) will be made on a case-by-case basis by the UNSW Medicine Higher Degree Committee. Extensions are granted one semester at a time. Your supervisor will need to support your application and endorse your plan for completion. Requests for extension must be made in advance and not retrospectively and you should therefore lodge an application at least 2 months before the census date prior to the semester which you are requesting an extension to re-enrol. 

Failure to complete within 5 years (PhD) or 2.5 years (Masters) is a serious academic matter and you should not assume that these requests will be automatically approved.  You must attach to this form a two page minimum proposed timetable for completion, discussed with and supported by your supervisor. Your application must explain why you have been unable to complete your research within the extension periods already granted, and should refer to any difficulties that might have been experienced during the candidature as noted in the progress review reports.

Please read the information on the Graduate Research School website for further information.