The Minimum

What’s the minimum amount of viva prep I can get away with?

There are no bad questions in webinars, no stupid questions, but there are questions that surprise me!


What’s the minimum? A core set of tasks perhaps – reading, checking, practising – or a time period to do the work in.

What’s the minimum? Well, all you “need” is to submit a thesis and attend on the day of the viva. That would be the absolute minimum, right?

What’s the minimum? Maybe we need a better question. Charitably, I can imagine that the person asking the question is stressed, tired, overwhelmed and wondering what they can do to fit in what could feel like a lot of work.

Maybe instead of what’s the minimum? we can focus on how do I get ready if I’m busy?

You plan, you break the tasks down, you give yourself a generous period of time to do the work, you ask for help and so on.


And at a minimum, you’ve invested three years of work when you meet your examiners. There’s still more work needed to get ready for the viva, but don’t forget the foundations you’re building on to be ready for that conversation.