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You are here Staff Resources > Postgraduate Research Activities > Appointing Examiners

Nominating Research Examiners

An external examiner and an internal examiner (or occasionally two external examiners) are nominated to the Dean of Graduate Studies by the School’s Director of Teaching and Learning (Postgraduate) in consultation with the Supervisor (a standard nomination form is issued by the Academic Registry).

External Examiners

  • Two external examiners must be nominated in the case of candidates who are members of staff of the University.
  • In other exceptional circumstances where it is not possible to nominate an internal examiner, a case may be made to the Dean of Graduate Studies for two external examiners to be appointed.
  • The external examiner should be a recognised independent expert in the candidate’s field of study. The external examiner should not be a collaborator in the candidate’s research, nor be a recent graduate of the College.

Internal Examiners

  • The internal examiner must be a member of the academic staff and cannot be the candidate’s Supervisor but may be a member of the student’s Thesis Committee.
  • The internal examiner should not be a collaborator in the student’s research.
  • If the Director of Teaching and Learning (Postgraduate) is an internal examiner or the Supervisor, a pro-Director of Teaching and Learning (Postgraduate) should be appointed by the Head of School.

The Dean of Graduate Studies is the final arbiter regarding the suitability of examiners.

Examiners are asked to complete the examination process, including viva voce, within two months of receiving the thesis or as soon as practically possible thereafter.

The nominated examiners submit independent Pre-Viva Reports, one week before the viva voce examination to the Academic Registry at and exchange them with one another. The reports must be independent to allow examiners to take different positions if they wish.

Following the viva voce examination, examiners complete a joint Post-Viva Report within 24 hours of the viva, which the internal examiner or Chair of the viva voce should submit to the Academic Registry: on the same day.

If, in exceptional circumstances, it is not possible to complete this process on the day of the examination the Chair of the viva should ensure that the reports are submitted to no later than one week after the date of the viva voce examination.

External examiner payments and expenses are decoupled from the receipt of examination reports and are dealt with by the administrative staff within the School. For information about the payment of external examiners please visit the Trinity Teaching and Learning's External Examiners page.  

Further guidance and the report templates are available in the section below.

Regulations and Resources

If you have any questions please contact the Administrative Officer in Graduate Studies or check for answers on our FAQ page.