PReSS Account Policy and Procedures

Application

Doctoral candidates and those University staff members who administer and/or approve the use of PReSS accounts.

Purpose

This document outlines the policy and procedures to be followed in relation to the use of PReSS accounts at the University.

Policy

1. Postgraduate Research Student Support (PReSS) funding is provided by the University to assist with the provision of financial support for doctoral research that is not funded by other sources.

2. Candidates for the PhD, DocFA and MD degrees will accrue PReSS funding in a PReSS account for each month of enrolment up to four years of full-time equivalent enrolment, subject to satisfactory reviews of candidature and timely payment of University tuition fees.

3. Candidates for the EdD, DClinPsy, DMA and DMus degrees will accrue PReSS funding in a PReSS account for each month of enrolment up to three years of full-time equivalent enrolment, subject to satisfactory reviews of candidature and timely payment of University tuition fees.

4. The level of full-time equivalent annual funding is determined at the time of enrolment in accordance with the doctoral subject as categorised in TEC’s funding bands (see the Appendix below) and pro-rated in accordance with the candidate’s enrolment status.

5. In exceptional circumstances, the Dean of Graduate Studies may approve a different funding band.

6. PReSS funding may be expended only in accordance with the procedures below.

7. Doctoral candidates must budget PReSS funding to cover costs throughout their programme, and academic units must monitor local processes for compliance with this policy and associated procedures.

8. The School of Graduate Studies will oversee the use of the funds and will liaise with the Dean of Graduate Studies regarding their administration.

9. The academic unit in which the candidate is enrolled is responsible:

a) for any overspend of PReSS accounts inadvertently or otherwise approved by supervisors and/or the Academic Head

b) for reimbursement to candidates where a supervisor and/or Academic Head has approved advance expenditure (on a reimbursement basis) that is not compliant with the procedures below

c) for reimbursement to the University of any PReSS account deficit at the time of account closure (see clause 31).

Procedures

General provisions

10. A PReSS account will be established for each doctoral candidate within one month of initial enrolment in the doctoral programme.

11. Funding will accrue in the account subject to clauses 2-5 of the above policy.

12. Except where fixed academic unit charges apply in accordance with clause 17 below, all PReSS expenditure requires the approval of the candidate’s main or joint supervisor and the consent of the candidate. Some expenditure is also subject to the approval of the Academic Head and/or the Dean of Graduate Studies or the Dean’s nominee, as stipulated in these procedures.

Note: Only positions within the School of Graduate Studies nominated by the Dean of Graduate Studies may serve as the Dean of Graduate Studies “nominee” for the purposes of these procedures.

13. All PReSS expenditure and reimbursement is subject to the availability of unexpended PReSS funding in the candidate’s PReSS account, except as approved in accordance with clause 14 below.

14. PReSS accounts may go into deficit only

a) as approved by the Academic Head in accordance with clause 23 and/or 24 and/or 25

and

b) where the candidate has been enrolled for less than 36 months FTE

and

c) where the total expenditure for the account, including the proposed deficit amount, is less than 36 months FTE of PReSS funding for the account.

15. PReSS funding may be expended only towards the costs permitted under clauses 17-30.

16. Except as allowed under clause 30 below, all costs for which PReSS funding is sought must be incurred prior to submission of the thesis for examination.

Operational research costs

17. Academic units may establish fixed charges against PReSS accounts to cover research consumables and other operational research costs as approved by the Dean of Graduate Studies.

18. PReSS funding may be expended towards the following operational costs of required doctoral research, or towards equivalent required operational research costs as approved by the Dean of Graduate Studies (or nominee) subject to clauses 19-22:

  • research equipment user charges and research software licences
  • research consumables including animals (and their disposal costs)
  • research travel and associated accommodation costs
  • reimbursement of reasonable expenses for research participants and/or gift vouchers/koha for participants and/or cultural advisers
  • specialist computing peripherals as approved by the Dean of Graduate Studies (or nominee)

19. Equivalency under clause 18 is determined by the Dean of Graduate Studies (or nominee) in accordance with clauses 20-22. Where a candidate wishes to expend PReSS funding towards operational research costs under the equivalency provision of clause 18, the candidate must confirm the eligibility of the spend with the School of Graduate Studies in advance of expenditure.

  • Details of the proposed expenditure, including the rationale for the necessity of the research cost, must be submitted to the School of Graduate Studies by the candidate and endorsed by the supervisor.

20. PReSS funding may not be used to fund the conduct (by a party other than the candidate) of research-related tasks that the Dean of Graduate Studies (or nominee) determines should be undertaken by the doctoral candidate, or to cover operational costs that the Dean of Graduate Studies (or nominee) considers should be funded from another source, or where the Dean of Graduate Studies (or nominee) is not satisfied with the rationale submitted under clause 19.

21. PReSS fund expenditure on the purchase of research equipment requires the approval of the Dean of Graduate Studies (or nominee) and is limited to the purchase of minor items of equipment, which are essential and specific to the research and not available through academic unit funds, standard ITS support or research grants.

Note: any such equipment remains the property of the University; “minor” is subject to determination by the Dean of Graduate Studies (or nominee).

22. PReSS funding is not permitted to fund the following operational research costs:

  • books, DVDs (or equivalent), digital and journal subscriptions and other material to which access may be arranged by the University Library
  • University tuition fees
  • publishing subventions, including charges for open access publishing
  • research (including writing) space
  • travel to meet with supervisors
  • travel for required campus attendance
  • general office running costs
  • depreciation

23. Any expenditure approved in accordance with clause 17-22, which would result in the account going into deficit, is subject to final approval by the Academic Head. The Academic Head may grant approval only where:

a) the requirements of clause 14 are met

and

b) the proposed operational research costs are essential, cannot be met through any other means, and are specific to one or more of the following:

  • project set-up requirements
  • research that must be conducted at the start of the programme
  • research that is time-dependent or seasonal in nature
  • research necessary for timely progress

and

c) the Academic Head undertakes to reimburse the University for any account deficit at the time of account closure (see clause 31).

Conference costs

24. PReSS funding may be expended on conference costs (including travel, accommodation, registration fees and visas) up to a maximum of $4800 over the total period of eligibility for PReSS expenditure. Expenditure that would result in the account going into deficit is subject to final approval by the Academic Head. The Academic Head may grant approval only where

a) the requirements of clause 14 are satisfied

and

b) the Academic Head is satisfied that exceptional research circumstances apply

and

c) the Academic Head undertakes to reimburse the University for any account deficit at the time of account closure (see clause 31)

Training costs

25. PReSS funding may be expended towards tuition costs for required research-related training that is either not available at the University or not available without charge at the University. Expenditure that would result in the account going into deficit is subject to final approval by the Academic Head. The Academic Head may grant approval only where

a) the requirements of clause 14 are satisfied

and

b) the Academic Head is satisfied that exceptional research circumstances apply

and

c) the Academic Head undertakes to reimburse the University for any account deficit at the time of account closure (see clause 31)

Business cards

26. PReSS account funding may, subject to clause 27, be used to pay for official University of Auckland business cards.

27. Business cards must be ordered from the University’s preferred supplier, must state that the student is a doctoral candidate, and are only available to candidates who have been confirmed in the doctoral programme.

Carer responsibilities

28. The Dean of Graduate Studies (or nominee) may give approval for the use of up to $4800 of PReSS account funding towards the cost of cover for carer responsibilities (for pre-school and/or school-aged children; care of an ill or disabled family/whānau member or eldercare) incurred through a GST-registered service to:

i) facilitate conference attendance during the candidate’s enrolment, provided the candidate is presenting on their doctoral research at the conference

and/or

ii) facilitate submission of the thesis, provided that the candidate is no more than three months away from submitting the thesis for examination.

  • To be approved, applications must include a satisfactory statement from the candidate, endorsed by the supervisor, as to the candidate’s circumstances and timeline for submission of the thesis, and (where the candidate is applying under 28(i)) as to the relevance of the conference presentation to the advancement of the research.

Proofreading (exceptional circumstances required)

29. In exceptional circumstances only, and subject to approval by the Dean of Graduate Studies (or nominee), up to $1000 of PReSS funding in total may be expended towards the cost of proof-reading of the final draft(s) of i) the thesis and/or ii) parts of the thesis that have been accepted for publication. Applications must include a statement from the supervisor as to why the proof-reading is considered necessary and the case for exceptional circumstances. Approval may be granted only where:

Post submission of the thesis for examination

30. After submission of the thesis for examination and prior to the closure of PReSS accounts under clause 31, expenditure from the PReSS account is restricted to the following:

a) Where the provisions for PReSS expenditure under clause 28 have not previously been exhausted, the Dean of Graduate Studies (or nominee) may approve the expenditure of PReSS funding towards the cost of carer responsibilities (for pre-school and/or school-aged children; care of an ill or disabled family/whānau member or eldercare) incurred through a GST-registered service, where warranted by:

i) conference presentation within four months of submission of the thesis for examination

or

ii) the scale of thesis revisions required by the Board of Graduate Studies (or delegate).

For the avoidance of doubt, the maximum combined PReSS expenditure that may be approved under this clause and clause 28 is $4800.

b) Proof-reading approved under clause 27, except that no expenditure on proof-reading parts of the thesis that have been accepted for publication will be approved after the thesis has been submitted for examination. For the avoidance of doubt, the $1000 limit at clause 29 applies to the total cost of all proof-reading of final drafts pre and post submission of the thesis for examination and regardless of whether a candidate has been required to revise and resubmit the thesis for examination.

c) For candidates governed by a PhD Statute other than that which came into effect on 1 October 2020, or by the 2016 General Regulations for Named Doctorates, up to $500 of PReSS funding may be expended, in total, on the printing and binding of the thesis for final submission post examination.

d) PReSS funds may be expended for costs associated with conference presentations that take place within four months of submission of the thesis for examination, provided that the provisions for PReSS expenditure for conference costs under clause 24 have not already been exhausted.

For the avoidance of doubt, the maximum combined PReSS expenditure that may be approved under this clause and clause 22 is $4800.

Note: primary expenditure (e.g. payment of travel costs) should have occurred prior to submission of the thesis for examination.

Closure of PReSS accounts

31.

a) Accounts will close one month after the date specified by the Board of Graduate Studies (or delegate) for the final submission of the thesis post examination, except where one of the following occurs prior to final submission of the thesis:

i) termination of candidature or registration

ii) withdrawal from the programme

iii) expiration of candidature

Accounts will close one month after the date on which confirmation of i, ii or iii occurs.

b) All claims for reimbursement must have been completed within the timeframe for account closure specified at (a).

Reimbursement

32. Expenses already incurred may, subject to the requirements of this policy and procedures, be retrospectively approved and reimbursed until one month after the date specified by the Board of Graduate Studies (or delegate) for final submission of the thesis post examination.

33. All claims for reimbursement for New Zealand goods and services must be accompanied by the official GST receipt.

34. Expenditure incurred or claimed after the date specified by the Board of Graduate Studies (or delegate) for final submission of the thesis post examination, or after the date of termination of candidature/registration or programme withdrawal or expiration of candidature, will not be reimbursed.

35. PReSS funds may not be used to reimburse any expenditure that does not comply with the requirements of the above policy and these procedures.

Reports

36. Candidates are required to submit their Provisional/Confirmation or Annual/Continuation report each year, which:

  • must be approved as satisfactory before funds will continue to be credited to PReSS accounts. Failure to lodge such a report, or lodging a report that fails to be approved, will result in a freeze on PReSS funding availability
  • must include an indicative budget each year. The budget must indicate planned expenditure for the balance of the research and be developed in consultation with, and have the support of, the main or joint supervisor.

Appendix: Annual Allocated funding according to subject area

Subject Area Faculty/LSRI Band Annual Funding
Accounting Business & Econ J $1,200
Anaesthesiology FMHS C $2,900
Anatomy FMHS/Liggins C $2,900
Ancient History Arts A $1,200
Anthropology Arts C $2,900
Applied Linguistics Arts A $1,200
Architecture Creative Arts and Industries C $2,900
Art History Arts A $1,200
Asian Studies Arts A $1,200
Audiology FMHS C $2,900
Behavioural Science FMHS B $1,500
Bioengineering Engineering/FMHS/ABI C $2,900
Biological Sciences Science L $2,900
Biomedical Science Interfaculty C $2,900
Chemical and Materials Engineering Engineering L $2,900
Chemistry Science C $2,900
Chinese Arts A $1,200
Civil Engineering Engineering C $2,900
Commercial Law Business & Econ/Law J $1,200
Community Health FMHS C $2,900
Comparative Literature Arts A $1,200
Computer Science Science B $1,500
Computer Systems Engineering Engineering C $2,900
Criminology  Arts A $1200
Dance Studies Creative Arts and Industries B $1,500
Design Creative Arts and Industries B $1,500
Development Studies Arts C $2,900
Economics Business & Econ J $1,200
Education Education and Social Work A $1,200
Electrical and Electronic Engineering Engineering C $2,900
Engineering Science Engineering C $2,900
English Arts A $1,200
Environmental Science Science L $2,900
European Studies Arts A $1,200
Exercise Sciences Science C $2,900
Finance Business & Econ J $1,200
Fine Arts Creative Arts and Industries B $1,500
Food Science Science L $2,900
Forensic Science Science L $2,900
French Arts A $1,200
Gender Studies Arts A $1,200
General Practice FMHS C $2,900
Geography Science L $2,900
Geology Science L $2,900
German Arts A $1,200
Greek Arts A $1,200
Health Psychology Interfaculty L $2,900
Health Sciences Interfaculty C $2,900
Heritage Conservation Creative Arts and Industries C $2,900
History Arts A $1,200
Information Systems Arts B $1,500
International Business Arts J $1,200
Italian Arts A $1,200
Japanese Arts A $1,200
Korean Arts A $1,200
Language Teaching and Learning Arts A $1,200
Latin Arts A $1,200
Latin American Studies Arts A $1,200
Law Law J $1,200
Linguistics Arts A $1,200
Management Business & Econ J $1,200
Māori and Pacific Health FMHS C $2,900
Māori Studies Arts A $1,200
Marine Science Science L $2,900
Marketing Business & Econ J $1,200
Mathematics Science A $1,200
Mathematics Education Science A $1,200
Mechanical Engineering Engineering C $2,900
Mechatronics Engineering Engineering C $2,900
Media, Film and Television Arts A $1,200
Medical Imaging FMHS C $2,900
Medicine FMHS/Liggins C $2,900
Molecular Medicine FMHS/Liggins C $2,900
Music Creative Arts and Industries B $1,500
Nursing FMHS/Liggins B $1,500
Obstetrics and Gynaecology FMHS/Liggins C $2,900
Operations and Supply Chain Mgmt Business & Econ J $1,200
Operations Research Engineering C $2,900
Ophthalmology FMHS L $2,900
Optometry FMHS M $2,900
Pacific Studies Arts A $1,200
Paediatrics FMHS/Liggins C $2,900
Pathology FMHS C $2,900
Pharmacology FMHS/Liggins C $2,900
Pharmacy FMHS C $2,900
Philosophy Arts A $1,200
Physics Science L $2,900
Physiology FMHS/Liggins C $2,900
Planning Creative Arts and Industries C $2,900
Politics and International Relations Arts A $1,200
Property Business & Econ C $2,900
Psychiatry FMHS C $2,900
Psychology Science L $2,900
Public Policy Arts A $1,200
Russian Arts A $1,200
Social Work Education and Social Work A $1,200
Sociology Arts A $1,200
Software Engineering Engineering C $2,900
Spanish Arts A $1,200
Speech Science Science C $2,900
Statistics Science A $1,200
Surgery FMHS C $2,900
Theology Arts A $1,200
Translation Studies Arts A $1,200
Urban Design Creative Arts and Industries C $2,900
Women's Studies Arts A $1,200

Definitions

The following definitions apply to this document:

Academic unit may refer to a faculty, school, department or institute.

Candidates are students who are enrolled in a doctoral degree at the University.

Joint Supervisor refers to the joint supervisor with primary responsibility for administrative requirements.

Main Supervisor refers to the lead supervisor with primary responsibility for the supervision of the candidate and primary responsibility for administrative requirements.

PReSS accounts are Postgraduate Research Student Support (PReSS) accounts provided by the University to assist with the provision of financial support for doctoral research that is not funded by other sources.

Subject area is the official subject area in which the candidate is enrolled.

Supervisor refers to Main, Joint or Co-supervisor.

TEC is the Tertiary Education Commission/Te Amorangi Mātaurange Matua, the Crown Agency that leads the government’s relationship with the University.

University means the University of Auckland and includes all subsidiaries.

Key relevant documents

Document management and control

Content manager: School of Graduate Studies
Owner: Dean of Graduate Studies
Approved by: Board of Graduate Studies, Senate and Council
Date approved: October 2021
Review date: October 2024