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Thesis submission for examination

How to submit your thesis to the College Postgraduate Research Student Office. The College Office now accepts electronic-only submission of theses for examination.

When do you need to submit your thesis?

You are expected to submit your thesis within the last two months of your maximum period. You must submit your thesis on or before your maximum end date.

If you wish to submit more than three months before your prescribed end date, you must confirm this with your supervisor, and have your early submission approved by the College Exams Committee.

If you think you will need an extension to your maximum period of study, you will need to contact your supervisor to discuss arranging an Extension of Studies.

If more than three months pass between submitting your Notice of Intention to Submit form (NITS) and your soft‐bound thesis, we may need to contact your examiners to confirm they are still available.

Is your maximum end date at the week-end or in a holiday?

If your maximum end date falls on a day when the College Postgraduate Research Student Office is closed, this is not a problem. You can submit your thesis on the first day that the office is open again and this will not be considered a late submission.

Please note that it is your responsibility to ensure that your thesis arrives at the College by your submission deadline.

Has your thesis title changed since you submitted your NITS?

The title on your NITS form must be your final thesis title.

If your title changes after you have submitted your NITS pack, you need to re‐submit these forms, ensuring they show the correct title.

Re-submit a Notice of Intention to Submit (NITS)

What do you need to submit your thesis?

Please note the submission is electronic only - a soft-bound copy of your thesis is not required.

The thesis file must contain

Lay Summary in Theses guidance (131.81KB, PDF)

There is no requirement to include a separate signed declaration of own work. Completion of the online thesis submission process covers this requirement.

Have Covid-19 circumstances adversely affected your research?

PhD and MPhil students can make the Board of Examiners aware of the impact the pandemic has had on their research when they submit their thesis. 

This statement should not be included within the thesis, but provided as a separate document of no more than a single page at the point of thesis submission, via the online submission system.

If you have already submitted your thesis but you are still to have your viva, this can also be sent directly to [email protected] .

This statement will be submitted to the Examiners following the receipt of the pre-viva Reports, but before the Viva.

Detailed guidance on how to format your thesis can be found in the:

Thesis Format Guidance

Watch your word count.

Please note you will be asked to confirm your final word count on submission.

You may need a concession.

If the word count is above that permitted for your programme, a Concession for this additional wordcount must be approved before submission - otherwise the thesis will be returned.

Supervisor support for the additional word count will be required with the Concession request.

If the request is approved, Examiners will be notified of the additional work required prior to their appointment, or before the thesis is sent for examination.


Please consult your Graduate School for advice regarding referencing regulations and practices.

Have you submitted the thesis through Turnitin?

Please note your thesis must be submitted through Turnitin before submission and all similarity reports should be discussed with your Academic Supervisory Team BEFORE submission for examination.

Please consult your Graduate School for details to proceed with this requirement.

Please note it can occasionally take several hours (or even a few days) for the Similarity Reports to be produced therefore you must take this into account in the submission deadlines.

Turnitin guidance


You are welcome to use a proof‐reader for your thesis.

However, please be advised that proof‐readers should only comment on grammar, vocabulary, and clarity of written English; they should not advise on the subject matter of your thesis or your argumentation.

Find skills training and links to study skills resources with the University's Institute for Academic Development

As the author of your thesis, you hold copyright of all work submitted for assessment.

Prepare electronic files of your thesis.

Following this guidance will minimise any potential risk of having to re-do the process, and ensure your submission progresses smoothly.

Use common file formats.

You must submit files in the following common formats:

You should avoid submitting files compressed in zip or other archive formats (such files are difficult to access on submission and single large files are more problematic to upload over slower, or inconsistent broadband connections).

Apply this file naming convention consistently.

When submitting more than one file, you should consider how you would wish the examiners to review the content.

In particular, you should give consideration to the file order which you expect examiners should read or review the content.

Full example filename: s1234567-01-Abstract.pdf

Prepare an index file with our template.

In addition to the naming convention above, you must upload an index file, based on the simple template below, setting out the file name and a brief description of the contents of the file.

Download our electronic file submission file index template.

phd thesis submission edinburgh

Rename the index file in line with the guidance above. We suggest a format along the lines of: s1234567-00-Index.pdf

Populate the index document with details of all files you intend to submit electronically for the attention of your examiners.

Example content for the index document:

This file index document will be the first document you upload.

Upload electronic files of your thesis.

Do you use university systems with staff credentials, always submit your thesis file(s) using your student credentials ([email protected]).

If you use University systems with staff credentials, please click on the button below to open the link in an incognito or private browser window so that you may log in directly with your student credentials.

If you are denied access because you are logged in with staff credentials, log off and log back in with your student credentials.

Reminder: This page is aimed at students for a postgraduate research degree in the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences.

If you are a student in the College of Science and Engineering, refer to their Intranet.

If you are a student in the College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine, refer to their wiki.


Submit your thesis file(s) to the College Postgraduate Research Student Office (student login required)

What happens next?

Once we have received your thesis and your examiners have been nominated, the College Postgraduate Research Student Office will send your thesis out to your examiners for the first stage of the examination process.

Examination and viva

School of Social and Political Science

Thesis submission and examination.

Thesis submission and examination is managed by the College Postgraduate Office. Please review the process in the Thesis submission guide.

Please see the Thesis Submission Workflow for an overview of the entire process.

To help you prepare for your viva, please see the following IAD guidance .

In SPS, PhD students have a choice of viva methods. Therefore, you will need to advise your preference to the SPS PGR Support team ( [email protected] ) when you submit your Notice of Intention to Submit (NITS). Please note the final viva arrangement depends on facility availability and agreement of all parties.

Viva methods:

Note that remote participation by External Examiners may broaden the choice of experts available to you and can avoid visa or COVID complications that may arise from international travel.

The PGR Support team will provide guidance on permissions required by all parties where applicable.

Please note that you are also required to email your pre-submission thesis to your Principal Supervisor to upload to Turnitin  and check the similarity report.

This should be done as early as possible prior to your Maximum End Date (required thesis submission date) in case any revisions are required before submitting your thesis for examination.

If you have any queries, please email the College Postgraduate Office or the SPS PGR Support Team:

Email the College Postgraduate Office

Email the SPS PGR Support Team

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The University of Edinburgh home

Thesis resubmission for re-examination

Information on what steps to take if your thesis requires resubmission for examination.

PhD and MPhil resubmission for re-examination

Following the oral examination, examiners may decide that your thesis requires substantial revision and therefore recommend resubmission of a thesis - Reg 23e for PhD or Reg 24e for MPhil. The examiners' recommendation will be sent to the College Office on the Part II (oral examination) examination report form. The examination paperwork will be sent to the next Board of Examiners meeting for approval. You will then receive an official letter from the College Office notifying you of the recommendation to resubmit your thesis for re-examination and your new thesis submission deadline. You will also be sent copies of the report and examiner notes detailing what revisions are required. The examiners will specify a further period of study under supervision usually not exceeding 12 months (maximum 24 months). You will be required to pay Continuation Fees for the additional study period and a Resubmission Fee to resubmit your thesis; the Resubmission Fee is currently £690 for session 2018-19.  

Your new Resubmission deadline which will appear in your MyEd Portal.  This deadline is as strict as your initial submission deadline; late submissions will not be examined. In very exceptional occasions it may be possible to request an extension to your Resubmission deadline.

Board of Examiners

Resubmission fee

2 months before resubmission

You must notify the Informatics Graduate School and the College Office at least 2 months before you intend to resubmit your thesis. Please read the '2 Months Before Submission' page for information on the Intention to Submit forms you are required to submit. This will trigger the Nomination of Examiners process again. 

The examiners generally remain the same as for the initial examination. It is the responsibility of your supervisor to ensure the College Office has current mailing addresses for your examiners.

Thesis binding

You are required to submit at least 2 soft-bound copies of your thesis to the College Office.  If you have been or are currently a member of staff at the University you may be required to submit 3 soft-bound copies for examination; you should discuss this with your Supervisor.

Each copy of your thesis must contain the following:

The University has printing and binding services on the King's Buildings Campus (James Clerk Maxwell Building) and in the Central area (Infirmary Street).  For further information on locations to have your thesis bound please visit at the Thesis Binding Information link below.  Please note, it is recommended that you print your thesis single-sided at this stage so that examiners have space to make comments on the thesis.  Your thesis must conform to the College of Science and Engineering Thesis Format and Binding Guidelines (link below).  The 'Temporary Binding' paragraph in the document relates to the requirements for a soft-bound thesis.

Thesis binding information

Thesis format and binding guidelines

Re-submitting your thesis for re-examination

You are required to resubmit on or before your thesis resubmission deadline (also known as the Maximum End Date of your programme).  Your deadline date can be found on your MyEd Portal.

You must submit two soft-bound copies of your thesis (as described above) (three copies if a second external examiner has been appointed) to the College Office (Murchison House, King's Buildings):

College contact Info

If the addresses of your examiners have been confirmed by your supervisor to the College Office, the College Office will be able to send your thesis to your examiners within 5 working days.  If the examiners details have not been confirmed yet, there may be some delay in sending your thesis to the examiners.  If a viva is recommended by the examiners, it is strongly advised that your viva is not organised until your examiners have officially received a copy of your thesis and the re-examination paperwork from the College Office.  This benefits you as it gives the examiners suitable time to read and preliminarily re-examine your thesis before the viva; examiners must complete a report form before your viva. Examiners will normally be expected to read the thesis within three months of receiving it; but candidates should allow for examiners' other commitments. If, because of visa restrictions, overseas candidates must return home promptly at the end of their period in Edinburgh, they and their supervisors must ensure that an allowance is made for this time when re-submitting the thesis.

The University takes plagiarism very seriously and is committed to ensuring that so far as possible it is detected and dealt with appropriately.

Plagiarism is the act of including in one’s work the work of another person without providing adequate acknowledgement of having done so, either deliberately or unintentionally. At whatever stage of a student’s course, whether discovered before or after graduation, plagiarism will be investigated and dealt with.

We strongly recommend you read the following Guidance document:

Plagiarism guidance

Re-examination procedure and Board of Examiners - first time for resubmission

Students are only permitted one opportunity to resubmit their thesis. Following re-examination, you may, at most, be asked to make minor corrections.  It is important, therefore, to make sure you consult with your supervisor to make clear what is required to meet the requirements of your examiners.

The examination process for a resubmitted thesis remains similar to the initial examination.  The internal and external examiner are each required to submit a preliminary (Part I) report.  A second oral examination may not be required if the examiners felt the initial oral examination was considered to be satisfactory.  However, a second oral examination must be held if the examiners recommend one.

When the reports have been received by the College Office, they will be sent to the Board of Examiners for approval.  A few days after the meeting you will be sent an official letter from the College Office confirming the outcome of the re-examination.  The following recommendations are possible after a thesis resubmission:

Postgraduate Research Assessment Regulations

When you have completed the required corrections to your thesis, you must send a copy (either electronic or paper - depending on the preference of your examiner(s)) of your corrected thesis to your internal examiner for approval.  Your external examiner may also wish to see the corrected thesis.  They will then read your thesis again and, if they are satisfied that you have completed the corrections, complete the Certification of Corrections form.  The form will have been sent to your examiners with the other examination paperwork.  The Certification of Corrections form should be returned to the College Office as soon as possible so that your examination paperwork can be sent to the Board of Examiners for final approval.

Once the examiners have told you the corrections have been to their satisfaction, you can prepare the Final Submission Documentation.  This can then be submitted to the College Office.  The sooner you submit this documentation, the quicker you will receive your award letter after approval at the Board of Examiners meeting.  Please do not prepare this paperwork until your corrections have been approved by your examiners, they may ask you to make further corrections.

Board of Examiners - second time for resubmission

When the College Office receives the Certification of Corrections form from your examiner(s) they will send all of your examination paperwork to the next Board of Examiners meeting for approval.  If and when the Board approve the paperwork, you will be allowed to be awarded - providing you have submitted your Final Submission Documentation.

Final submission documentation

Once the College Office has received all the necessary examination paperwork from your examiners and it has been approved by the Board, and you have submitted your Final Submission Documentation you will be sent your award letter. Again, please ensure the College Office have the correct mailing address for you.  The College Office is only allowed to give you one letter, if you require copies of your award letter it is your responsibility to photocopy the letter.  Please also read: Final Submission and Graduation.

Change of address

The College Office will use the mailing address that is listed on your EUCLID record listed as 'contact/ term-time address'. If this address is not correct then it is your responsibility to update this information. You can do so via the Student Personal Details channel on MyEd. Please see the following link for instructions on how to do this: 

Change Student Record Details

Useful links

Postgraduate Assessment Regulations for Research Degrees

Code of Practice for Supervisors and Research Students

Plagiarism prevention and detection - Information Services


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  1. Doctoral thesis submission

    Final thesis submission After you have successfully completed your examination, you must submit the final electronic copy of your thesis to your College Office and deposit a copy on PURE. Your College Office will invite you to submit your final thesis and provide guidance on how to do this.

  2. Thesis submission for examination

    How to submit your thesis to the College Postgraduate Research Student Office. The College Office now accepts electronic-only submission of theses for examination. When do you need to submit your thesis? You are expected to submit your thesis within the last two months of your maximum period.

  3. Submitting your thesis for examination

    You may submit your thesis to the College Office up to 3 months before the end of your Prescribed Period of Study. If you wish to submit earlier than 3 months you should discuss this with your supervisors. An Early Submission request must be made to the College Office and they must grant approval.

  4. Thesis submission and examination

    Thesis submission and examination is managed by the College Postgraduate Office. Please review the process in the Thesis submission guide. Please see the Thesis Submission Workflow for an overview of the entire process. To help you prepare for your viva, please see the following IAD guidance.