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Postgraduate Research Handbook


For the attention of students in PhD FT Year 3, PT Year 6 / MPhil FT Year 1, PT Year 2 / DBA Year 5

Extensions and Submission Pending

From 1st September 2014, any permission granted to a student for an Extension to the Prescribed Period of Programme (with or without the appropriate fee) will have a direct impact on the length of the Submission Pending period that students are entitled to.  For example, a 3-month extension to the prescribed period would mean a maximum of 9-months of Submission Pending would be permitted.

This is in accordance with the regulations for your degree (PhD / MPhil / DBA) (see sections “Duration of the Degree” and “Submission Pending Period”) and the Policy on Circumstances Leading to Changes to PGR Study, which further states that:


2.1 The Submission Pending Period

The maximum registration period for submission pending is 12 months for students who were previously both full-time and part-time, but the period approved will be dependent on the length of the original programme for which the student is registered.


Registered Period of Programme

Maximum Allowable Submission Pending Period

One year full-time and no more than two years part-time (eg: MPhil)

12 months

Three year full-time and no more than six years part-time (eg: PhD)

12 months



In extreme exceptional circumstances, students will have the option to apply to the Faculty Postgraduate Committee for permission to extend the Thesis Submission deadline at the end of the Submission Pending period, but generally the student would have been expected to submit within the above timescale.  (Please refer to the following section regarding this type of Extension).


Extension to Submission Deadline

If you are experiencing serious personal difficulties, you may make a request to extend the deadline for submitting your thesis.  Requests to extend submission deadlines are only granted in extreme circumstances where events beyond your control have made it impossible to submit on time.  You should discuss this with your supervisory team as soon as possible and, if appropriate, make an application at least 2 months before your submission deadline. 

Approval process

Extensions to the Submission Deadline for a maximum of 6 weeks can be granted by the School. Extensions above 6 weeks must be approved at Faculty level.  Except in exceptional circumstances, an extension should usually not be more than 6 months.  

Applications to the Faculty should be made using the Special Permissions Application Form, attaching all relevant documentation including a plan of work for your thesis. 

All applications received will be reviewed in the first instance by the School PGR Director, with whom you will also be required to discuss your application before a decision is made. If your application is for an extension of more than 6 weeks, it will also be reviewed by the Faculty of Humanities Associate Dean for PGR. The Associate Dean for PGR will endeavour to make a decision on the case and communicate this to the Doctoral Programmes Office within 10 days of receiving the completed request.

If your application is approved, you will be charged the appropriate registration or Submission Pending fees.  If your thesis is submitted AFTER the agreed submission deadline (with or without an extension) and if the School agrees to accept the late submission, you will be charged a late submission fee.  Please note: The Late Submission policy only applies to students who started their current postgraduate research programme before 1st September 2012.

Requests for extensions based on a student’s employment situation or on computer or other equipment failure are unlikely to be approved.  Students will not be granted extensions because research has taken longer than expected, or on the basis of personal or financial situations which could reasonably have been foreseen.   

Important note for Students holding a Tier 4 Visa

If you are a non-EU/International student holding a Tier 4 Visa and your research is delayed, you will need to apply to the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) for an extension of stay in the UK to enable you to complete your studies.  Medical certificates and other relevant documents must be gathered as these will form an essential part of the immigration extension application.