(partially cross-posted from themikado
So, on Monday I had my PhD viva, which I passed. :-)
The way it works here is that you write a thesis and submit it, which is then read by two examiners - an internal examiner from your university and an external examiner from elsewhere. The external is an expert in the field, and it's this person you have to impress to pass the PhD. When they've read it, they organise a viva voce
examination where they quiz you about the thesis to a) make sure you wrote it; and b) make sure you know what you're talking about.
My viva lasted a little less than three hours, and they went through the thesis asking me various questions about the chapters. Why had I done it like this? Could I explain the relevance of that analysis? What does this mean in the bigger picture of the literature? It was challenging. I couldn't answer all the questions, but I gave it my very best shot.
At the end both the examiners told me that the thesis was very well written and that they'd enjoyed reading it (!) and they wanted to pass me with only very minor typographical corrections (!!). The external even complimented me on my use of the subjunctive. I said I didn't know what that was, never having been taught grammar at school, and he replied: 'if I were to tell you, it would insult your intelligence'. Oh, so that's
what it is. Right. He also said that he wanted to keep a copy to refer to (!!!).
I got my corrections today, and there's about 8 things they want changed. So I should be finished by the end of the day, and then I can get the thing hard bound and submitted to the Student Registry in time to graduate in July.
All done! :-D
I will probably be leaving this community very soon, but feel free to ask a just-examined newly-minted doctor any questions you might have!
ETA: many thanks for the congrats guys!