Award of degrees

Once the examiners have approved the award of a degree and returned their forms to Research Services there are a number of checks that need to be completed before Research services can confirm the award of the degree.

  • All examiners’ reports must be considered and approved by the relevant faculty before the degree can be awarded.
  • By regulation, all students are debt-checked to ensure that any tuition or tuition-related fees have been paid.
  • All students must provide a Library copy of their final awarded thesis and an Access to Thesis form specifying the terms under which access to the thesis can be granted. For the majority of students, the Library copy will be an eThesis upload to the University’s online thesis repository (White Rose Etheses Online).
  • Students required to undertake the Doctoral Development Programme must have demonstrated satisfactory engagement via submission and approval of an ePortfolio.

If any of the above are outstanding the degree will be withheld until they have been completed.

Once the above checks have been satisfactorily completed, Research Services will update the student record with the degree award and send the student an award letter.  Award letters are posted to a student's correspondence address, as held on the student record, as well as sent by email. Students also receive a copy of the examiners' report forms.  Students are responsible for ensuring that their addresses are kept up-to-date on the student record to avoid loss of important correspondence. 

Every effort is made to minimise the time between receipt of the examiners' report, formal approval by the faculty and award of the degree; however this process can take several weeks. Students can help expedite the process by ensuring they have completed any required tasks such as submitting a DDP ePortfolio, paying outstanding fees and providing an eThesis and Access to Thesis. Any student who requires urgent notification of their award, e.g. for employment purposes, should alert Research Services.

Conferment of degrees

Following the award of a degree the Events Team will contact the student in due course with details of when the degree will be conferred.  Further information concerning graduation ceremonies, conferment of degrees or receipt of degree certificates should be addressed to the Events Team on (0114) 222 8828 or e-mail graduation@sheffield.ac.uk.

It should be noted that, although as many students as possible are invited to the first ceremony to be held after the award of their degree, it is not always possible to include all candidates at a particular ceremony.  Students should therefore not assume that they will automatically be included in that ceremony, even if departments and supervisors indicate that this will be the case. Only the Events Team has the authority to confirm invitations to particular ceremonies.

Candidates who are awarded their degree by the end of March will be invited to attend the July graduation ceremonies and candidates who are awarded by the end of September will be invited to attend the January graduation ceremonies. Candidates completing after these deadlines will be invited only if space permits and may be required to wait until the next ceremonies.