Doctoral Examination Appeal Procedures


Doctoral candidates wishing to appeal the outcome of a doctoral examination, except:

  • PhD candidates governed by a PhD Statute other than that which came into effect on 1 October 2020
  • Named doctorate candidates governed by the 2016 General Regulations for Named Doctorates

Such candidates must consult the appeal provisions of the applicable Statute or General Regulations.


To detail the procedures that apply to the submission, consideration and determination of appeals as to the outcome of a doctoral examination.


1.   A doctoral candidate may appeal the outcome of a doctoral examination only on the grounds that the result was materially impacted by a procedural flaw in the examination process.

2.   The appeal must be lodged by the candidate, or by a proxy acting on the authority of the candidate, within two months of the date of notification (to the candidate) of the outcome of the doctoral examination.

3.   The appeal must state clearly the procedural grounds relied on by the candidate, and all relevant and supporting documentation must be attached.

4.   No person with a procedural role in the candidate’s examination process may be involved in the consideration and determination of the appeal.

5.   The Dean of Graduate Studies (“the Dean”), or a nominee appointed by the Dean for the purposes of these procedures, will consider the appeal and may seek further information and/or evidence relating to the candidate’s appeal and/or examination. The Dean, or their nominee, will then make a report and recommendation to the Provost.

6.    Subject to clause 7, the candidate will be provided with a copy of the report and recommendation prior to its dispatch to the Provost.

7.    Material relevant to the consideration of the appeal may be withheld from the candidate on grounds consistent with the Privacy Act. 

8.    Where the candidate wishes to supply a comment on the report and recommendation for consideration by the Provost, the candidate must supply such comment to the Dean or their nominee within seven calendar days of the electronic dispatch of the report and recommendation to the candidate.

9.    The candidate is prohibited from introducing any further grounds or material for consideration in any comment supplied under clause 8.

10.   The Dean, or their nominee, will collate, and dispatch to the Provost, the candidate’s appeal, the report and recommendation on the appeal, including any material withheld from the candidate under clause 7, and any comment supplied by the candidate in accordance with clause 8.

11.   The Provost may seek clarification of, and/or further evidence relating to, the material dispatched under clause 10. 

12.   Where the Provost obtains clarification and/or further evidence from a person other than the candidate, the candidate will be advised in accordance with the provisions of clause 7 and may comment within a period of time determined by the Provost. 

13.   The Provost will consider all material supplied pursuant to clauses 10-12 and determine the appeal. 

14.   The Provost will convey the outcome of the appeal, and the reasons for the outcome, in writing to the candidate.

15.   The determination of the appeal by the Provost under clause 13 is the final decision on the appeal and may involve re-examination of the work.


Doctoral candidate refers to a student enrolled in a doctoral degree at the University.

University means the University of Auckland and includes all subsidiaries.

Document management and control

Content manager: School of Graduate Studies

Owner: Dean of Graduate Studies

Approved by: Board of Graduate Studies

Date approved: October 2020

Review date: October 2023