You are the only person in your viva who can speak for you and your work. The questions and comments from your examiners, the discussion that follows, all of it is is centred on getting you to engage and talk. You, and you alone, can respond.
Before the viva, however, you are not alone – there are many people who can offer you support.
- Your supervisors provide professional support over a long period of time. As you approach the viva they can share their perspectives and offer a mock viva.
- Friends and colleagues from your research community can share their stories and listen to your concerns, offering support when able.
- Friends and family from your non-research life can offer their love and listen. They can help to create a good environment for you to do the work you need to do. Share what you really need.
You get to the viva, alone, but supported. You’re the only one in a position to respond, buoyed by the support and help of many others. You, and you alone, can – and will – rise to this challenge.