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Higher Degree by Research Progress and Milestones Policy
1. Purpose:
  1. This Policy outlines the principles for supporting the academic progress of Higher Degree by Research (HDR) candidates at the University.
2. Scope:
  1. This Policy applies to HDR courses and candidates. 
  2. This Policy does not apply to undergraduate (including Honours) or postgraduate coursework courses and students covered by the Admission (for Undergraduate and Postgraduate Coursework Courses) Policy.
3. Principles:
Progress Monitoring
  1. University policy and practice relating to HDR courses will encourage and assist candidates to achieve the objectives of their research project, acquire transferrable skills, and complete the academic requirements for award of the relevant degree within the approved course duration. 
  2. The progress of candidates in HDR courses is monitored to ensure the candidate’s satisfactory progress towards submission and completion. 
  3. Ongoing assessment of progress occurs through regular supervisory contact and the achievement of mandatory milestones. 
  4. Faculties must formally review the progress of HDR candidates annually via the Annual Progress Report (APR). 
  1. Candidates enrolled in courses that include a coursework component are required to complete the specified coursework units to at least a pass level.
  2. Failure to achieve the required level will result in academic progress measures being implemented.
  1. Candidates are required to complete the following seminars:
  • Introductory seminar
  • Confirmation of Candidature seminar (includes written submission)
  • Work in progress seminar (doctoral candidates only), and
  • Pre-submission seminar.
  1. Enrolment in the HDR course remains provisional until Confirmation of Candidature is achieved.
  2. Failure to achieve Confirmation of Candidature by the due date may result in academic progress measures being implemented.

Research Integrity Training 
  1. Candidates must successfully complete the University’s Research Integrity Training modules prior to Confirmation of Candidature.
Academic Progress Measures 
  1. If progress issues are identified through the monitoring and completion of milestones, the Faculty must initiate Progress Support Strategy (PSS).
  2. PSS provides a formal avenue to assist candidates who are not progressing as expected and requires formal intervention by the supervisory panel and Faculty Associate Dean Research (ADR).
  3. Failure by the candidate to fulfil the conditions of or appropriately engage with PSS will result in the candidate being placed on Academic Probation.
  4. Failure to fulfil the conditions or to appropriately engage with Academic Probation will result in the candidate being discontinued from the course.
See the HDR Progress and Milestones Procedures for detailed information on the Progress Support Strategy and Academic Probation.

Appeals and Grievances
  1. Candidates are permitted to appeal academic and administrative decisions and actions relating to progress and milestones.
  2. As outlined in the Student Grievance Resolution Policy, an appeal or grievance relating to progress or milestones should in the first instance, be handled informally where possible, between the candidate and Primary Supervisor or other panel member/s as appropriate.
  3. If informal resolution is not possible, the procedures outlined in the Student Grievance Resolution Policy apply.
4. Responsibilities:
Who Responsibilities
Deputy Vice-Chancellor & Vice President Research and Innovation Policy Custodian
Primary Supervisor Support candidate to achieve mandatory milestones and monitor progress of HDR candidate in the course.
Initiate academic progress measures as required.
HDR candidate  Achieve mandatory milestones and academic requirements of the course
Engage with and fulfil the requirements of academic progress measures (if required).
Faculty Monitor progress of HDR candidates annually via APR.
Faculty ADR Implement and monitor academic progress measures as required.
7. Definitions:
  1. The following definitions are relevant to this Policy:
Term Meaning
Academic Probation Means the imposition of one or more conditions on a student’s progress, see University of Canberra Academic Progress Rules 2017
Annual Progress Report (APR) Mandatory review of progress required to be completed annually by HDR candidates. 
Confirmation of Candidature A milestone requirement that allows experts in the relevant field of research to assess the quality and viability of a research project and the capability of a candidate to complete within the required time.
Higher Degree by Research (HDR) course Means a degree of master by research or a degree of doctor by research, see University of Canberra Courses and Awards (Courses of Study) Rules 2013
Higher Degree by Research (HDR) candidate or student Means a degree of master by research or a degree of doctor by research, see University of Canberra Courses and Awards (Courses of Study) Rules 2013
Primary Supervisor An academic staff member registered with the University to supervise HDR candidates, approved as the Chair of a candidates’ supervisory panel, see Higher Degree by Research Supervision Policy.
Progress Support Strategy Early intervention measure required prior to implementation of Academic Probation. 
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