The Question No-one Asks

Almost thirteen years of workshops, seminars and webinars and no-one has ever asked me, “What do I do if I feel fine about my viva?”

  • I’ve met candidates who feel excited, but they also admit to needing to know more about the process.
  • I’ve met candidates who feel capable, but want to know how to prepare well.
  • I’ve met candidates who are reasonably confident and yet they don’t know what to do about a particular problem or issue they’ve realised.

And I’ve met a lot of candidates who are nervous, uncertain of the process or unsure of what to do to prepare.

People feel lots of things about their viva. I’ve never met a candidate who told me they just felt fine about theirs.


Of course, if you do then continue to do whatever has helped you to feel that way! Tell me (and everyone!) what your secret is. Relax, read your thesis and continue to build on how you feel.

If you don’t feel fine, which seems far more likely, then reflect on what’s holding you back.

What do you need to know? What do you need to do? Who do you need to ask for help?

Then take the steps you have to take to lead yourself to being ready for the viva. Maybe you won’t arrive at fine, but you can certainly feel capable and confident for meeting your examiners.