Opportunities To Practise

A key step of viva preparation is investing a little time to practise. A mock viva could be a great rehearsal for the real thing, but it’s not the only option.

  • Simply talk. Sit down over coffee, over video if you need to, and just tell someone about your work. Invite their questions. Ask them to prompt you if you’re not being clear.
  • Give a talk. Invite colleagues to listen. Use a few slides but only to help frame your thesis and research. Don’t talk for long; use the time to get into conversations.
  • Have a mini-viva. There are thousands of possible conversations that this resource could prompt. One or two might give you useful practise.

There are reasons why mock vivas are generally valued as a part of viva prep. They’re supposed to help you explore what it would be like to be in the viva. More fundamentally though, you need practise at responding to questions; taking the time to think and feeling comfortable doing so.

So what opportunities will you make for yourself?