MPLS Division: Guidelines for DGSs in Selection of Transfer Assessors
- The aim of transfer is to assess: student progress; the validity of the proposed research; project; and the likelihood of submission within the student’s funded period/within 12 terms (for DPhil) or 9 terms (for MSc(R)).
The University’s guidelines state that:
“The purpose of the transfer process is to ensure that you have a convincing research proposal, that you are making satisfactory progress in its development, and to satisfy the assessors that the work is potentially of DPhil quality or MSc by Research quality.”
- At least one of the assessors should be sufficiently expert in the student’s precise field of research.
- DGSs should ensure all supervisors (old and new) are aware of the purpose of transfer and the benefits for ensuring it is conducted promptly and rigorously.
- DGSs should ensure nominated assessors have received adequate training/guidance on conducting the assessment.
- DGSs should ensure students and supervisors are aware of any specific department deadlines for transfer.
Guidelines for Selection of Assessors:
- Minimum of two assessors should be appointed for DPhil and MSc by Research transfers
- Assessors should normally be academic staff internal to Oxford, and if appropriate they could be from outside the student’s department (only in exceptional cases should external assessors be used, and the department would need to bear any costs/expenses). If the two assessors are not internal academic staff then the nominations must be approved by the Director of the Graduate School.
- Assessors must not have acted in a supervisory capacity to the student.
- At least one assessor should have considerable experience of supervising PhD students in Oxford, including to completion.
- Transfer assessors may subsequently be invited as examiners for the student’s final thesis, provided they have not given further help/assistance to the student between transfer viva and final submission.
- Assessors should be approved by the DGS, or equivalent (where relevant) before the assessment takes place.
- Assessors will be appointed by the DGS in consultation with the supervisor(s) as/if the DGS sees appropriate.