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The candidate and supervisor(s) should normally agree when sufficient work has been done to enable final write up and subsequent submission of the thesis.

To begin the examination process, candidates are requested to advise their supervisors of the intention to submit their thesis at least two months prior to submission. This will prompt the supervisors to nominate examiners and give the candidate time to submit an application for a Postgraduate Publishing Bursary, if applicable.

Master's research candidates should submit a final draft of their thesis, to check for unintentional plagiarism, using Turnitin, which is available on the Blackboard website 'GRS_MST Graduate Research Support for Masters Students' under 'Turnitin'. However, candidates should be aware that the search engines for Turnitin may not capture all journals that have been used, so could miss detecting passages of text that may be copied.

If the thesis involves sensitive intellectual property, prior to submission, the supervisor needs to send confidentiality agreements to each examiner (internal and external), and have these signed documents submitted to the academic unit/department/centre by the time the thesis is submitted for examination.

In a departure from our current Examination and Assessment Regulations (which we are in the process of updating), we are now allowing digital submission of theses.

Examination and Assessment Regulations

Candidates need to submit:

  • A digital PDF file of their thesis either by email or Mail Express
  • A signed thesis submission declaration form (digital signature is acceptable). A photocopied or scanned declaration is acceptable as long as the signature is hand written or digital – not typed. The form can be found at the link below:

    Master's research (thesis) forms

COVID-19 impacts on thesis - If COVID-19 has significantly impacted the nature of your research, this form can be used to provide guidance to examiners about the nature of the disruption.

Where to submit:

  • In Dunedin, email to the Administrator in your department/unit
  • In Christchurch, email your electronic thesis to
  • In Wellington, email to the Postgraduate Liaison Officer in the Postgraduate Office

Note that Academic Units may be asked to produce one or more soft-bound copies for the examiners.

The signed declaration attests that the work was done by the candidate personally (or co-authored with proper referencing and citations), that the material has not previously been accepted in whole, or in part, for any other degree or diploma, and that the thesis has been checked for unintentional plagiarism.

The Academic Unit concerned is responsible for forwarding copies of the thesis to the external and internal examiners.

Candidates are strongly advised to retain any data or essential material relating to the research at least until the examination process has been completed.

A candidate is required to be enrolled at the time of submitting a thesis. This means that if the candidate does not submit the thesis by the end of that semester for which they are enrolled, they will be required to:

  1. enrol for the next semester; and
  2. pay the full fees for that semester (or negotiate with Revenue Management, being invoiced for part of the semester)

It will not be possible for the thesis to be accepted for examination until that is done.

The enrolment must be continuous, and the candidate must meet all other eligibility checks prior to submission (not a debtor, valid visa/passport and so forth).

If the thesis is submitted before the end of a semester, the candidate will receive a pro rata fees refund for the portion of the semester that remains after they have submitted calculated on a monthly basis. The pro rata refund will be calculated based on full months only. This means that if the thesis is submitted on say 16 April, the calculation date will be considered as 30 April and the candidate will receive a pro rata refund based on the two months that remain after 30 April.

Note that there is a minimum enrolment level of one full-time equivalent year required for the thesis component of a Master's degree. Pro rata fees refunds will apply only if the minimum enrolment level has been reached.

Please note that if a student has a student loan, the pro rata fees refund will be returned directly to StudyLink appropriately.

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