Suspensions and extensions of study for postgraduate research students

Where circumstances or events occur which adversely impact on a research student's progress, the University may grant a period of suspension or extension of study. This may also happen during the referral period.

In many cases lost time can be made up during the student's candidature but where this is not possible because of the serious, disruptive nature of the situation a period of suspension or extension may be a possible option. For international students, staff should be aware of the possible impact on the student's visa and direct them to seek advice from the International Student Office. There may also be implications in relation to funding bodies.

The Policy and guidance on suspensions and extensions of study for postgraduate research students (PDF) provides definitions of "suspension" and "extension" and the types of circumstances in which a suspension or extension might be approved. It also outlines staff roles in the process and suggests sources of further information.

The guidance also explains how the process works in cases where a suspension is requested after a thesis has been referred for resubmission or where an extension of the deadline for corrections is requested.

Relevant forms 

Students who wish to request a suspension or extension of their studies will need to fill in the relevant form (DOC) and return it to the Postgraduate Research Tutor, faculty graduate school office or their school Postgraduate Research Administrator.

After the student has submitted the request, the Postgraduate Research Tutor fills out a recommendation for permission to suspend/extend form (DOC). This must be returned to Postgraduate Research and operations via the Student Services Centre counter.

Further information

Further information on absences, suspensions and extensions to study is available from the For Students page.