Provisional goals

Key facts about provisional goals for new PhD and named doctorate candidates.

As a new doctoral candidate, you have a number of compulsory ‘provisional’ goals. These are goals that you must complete within the first 12 months of your enrolment (24 months if part-time) so that you can be confirmed into your programme.

Your specific set of goals appear on your registration summary. Most of these goals are requirements for your programme (see regulations below), but you may also have additional goals tailored to your individual research and circumstances.

The nine provisional goals described below are compulsory for everyone on the PhD programme; three of these are also compulsory across all named doctorate programmes.

Read the regulations for your programme:

Outline of provisional goals

Attend the Doctoral Induction

What: An introduction to doctoral-level study at the University. It is also a good opportunity to meet and connect with other new doctoral candidates from across the University. The Doctoral Induction is different from any faculty induction you may need to attend.
When: As early as possible - we strongly advise you to book the next available session.
Who: Compulsory for all doctoral candidates.
Book now: Doctoral Induction.

Pass the Academic Integrity Course

What: An online course that helps to ensure you understand important academic integrity information.
When: Within two months of enrolment.
Who: Compulsory for all doctoral candidates who have not already completed Academic Integrity as part of previous University of Auckland study.
Get started: Academic Integrity.

Complete DELNA

What: This diagnostic language assessment helps identify what, if any, English language support will be useful to you in your studies. Most candidates will start with the 30-minute DELNA Screening, following which you may be advised to undertake the longer DELNA Diagnosis.
When: Within two months of enrolment.
Who: Compulsory for all candidates who have not already completed it as part of previous study. Those with an English Language Waiver will skip straight to the Diagnosis.
More details: DELNA for doctoral candidates.

Complete a health and safety goal

What: Your health and safety goal will be slightly different for each programme and subject. It is organised by your academic unit.
When: This goal should be undertaken early and may be part of your academic unit orientation.
Who: Compulsory for all PhD candidates.
More details: Refer to your supervisor.

Gain ethics approval (if required)

What: Official approval to undertake research involving humans or animals.
When: Before the end of your provisional year. It's a good idea to start early, as the process can take a surprisingly long time.
Who: All doctoral candidates who require ethics approval for their research.
More details: Ethics applications.

Discuss your Needs Assessment plan

What: A documented plan for skills development that is useful throughout your doctoral degree. You will complete this with the help of your supervisor
When: You should discuss this document early in your candidature to help you plan your skills development throughout the coming year and beyond.
Who: Compulsory for all PhD candidates
Download the form: Provisional year review.  

Gain approval for your full thesis proposal

What: Approval of your full thesis proposal by your department or faculty postgraduate committee.
When: This will usually happen at your Provisional Year Review meeting.
Who: Compulsory for all PhD candidates.
Find out more: Refer to your supervisor.

Successfully present your work

What: A presentation of your work to a seminar, research group or conference, to the satisfaction of you supervisors.
When: This usually takes place towards the end of your provisional year.
Who: Compulsory for all PhD candidates.
Find out more: Refer to your supervisor.

Produce a substantial piece of written work

What: A substantial piece of written work (for example, a literature review) produced to the satisfaction of your supervisors.
When: Before the end of your provisional year.
Who: Compulsory for all PhD candidates
Attend a workshop: Literature review: Organising and writing.

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