Reviewing your progress

A summary of the reviews that you are required to complete as a graduate researcher.

What is a progress review?

There are a number of reviews that you are required to complete as a graduate researcher. More information about each type of review can be found on the Graduate Research Hub:

Pre-confirmation review

The aims of the pre-confirmation reviews are:

  • To assist the graduate researcher to formulate a framework for the research and time estimates for its completion
  • Identify activities of focus in preparation for the confirmation meeting (e.g. is the graduate researcher on track to complete confirmation requirements
  • Identify any challenges early on or additional skills/training required, and
  • Ensure that the advisory committee is established.

More about pre-confirmation reviews

Confirmation review

  • Prepare a written report of at least 3,000 and up to 10,000 words (depending on the requirements of your graduate school)
  • Give an oral presentation of 20–30 minutes on your project (including questions) in a graduate research seminar appropriate to your school, or in a similar forum
  • Verbally defend your proposed research project with the advisory committee. During the defence, the advisory committee will assess the feasibility and resource requirements of your proposed project and offer you suggestions regarding its successful completion
  • Meet any special requirements noted at enrolment and necessary for your confirmation (completion of Research Integrity Online Training)
  • You and your supervisors should present a proposal (on an integrated format appropriate for a thesis of this nature) to the advisory committee for endorsement.

More about confirmation reviews

Progress review

  • Prepare your thesis and research plan, including progress to date and plans for the coming review period
  • List your research outputs such as publications, presentations or curated works either completed since your last review or planned for the coming review period
  • Prepare your written report, draft thesis chapters and/or creative works as required by your faculty or department.

The purpose of progress reviews are:

  • To encourage discussion between the graduate researcher and their advisory committee (includes supervisors)
  • To monitor progress, highlight achievements, identify skills and knowledge that require further development
  • To discuss and set goals or offer guidance on timelines for research outcomes
  • To support the timely completion of your thesis

More about progress reviews

Timeline of progress reviews in the Doctor of Philosophy (Engineering)
Timeline of progress reviews in the Master of Philosophy (Engineering)

Review meetings

A key part of the progress review process is the review meeting whereby you and your advisory committee (your supervisors and committee chair) discuss and assess your progress. The meetings should be scheduled within two weeks of milestone/review due dates.

How do I prepare for my progress review?

It is your responsibility to organise your advisory committee for your meeting:

  • Contact your committee at least a month in advance to arrange a date. Note that the minimum attendance requirement for your meeting includes: your principal supervisor, a co-supervisor, your committee chair and yourself.
  • Contact your department administrator for room bookings, etc.
  • Submit any written material (draft thesis chapters, a literature review, updated research plan or a paper manuscript) to your principal supervisor at least one week before the actual meeting takes place. Consult with your supervisor to find out what you need to provide for your progress review well before the meeting. Review research targets and outcomes that were set for the year.

What is the progress review process?

  1. Dates for these meetings are set automatically by our candidature management system (CiA) from the date you commenced, but these dates change to correspond to any change in your thesis date. You can view your key milestone dates including your expected thesis submission date, supervisors and other candidature details on the landing page when you log into your Student Portal and click on the Graduate Research tab on the top of the screen.
  2. Your review forms are online and sent to you within 3 months of your review date
  3. You will be provided with a link to the review in the notification
  4. Once you submit your review, you should arrange your review meeting so that your committee members can attend
  5. Your committee chair completes the review and submits it. Most reviews are assessed by your department/school’s GR Academic Coordinator
  6. The graduate research team processes the review and you will receive a notification of the outcome. Your advisory committee will recommend one of the following review outcomes:

How to get help

If you are having an issues preparing for your progress review please discuss this with your principal supervisor or Get in touch with the graduate research team.

If you have concerns about your progress or research and don’t want to wait for your progress review meeting to raise your concerns, see the Services, support and activities for more information or contact us at mse-gr@unimelb.edu.au.