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Australian Universities' Review, v51 n2 p32-41 2009

This paper suggests rethinking the doctoral examination process in Australia to enable a closer alignment with the aims of the learning programme. The doctoral examination processes generally aim to assess the candidate's research capability, the quality and originality of the candidate's contribution to knowledge, and to authenticate that the work undertaken is in fact that of the candidate. However, based on a review of the Australian system for examining it is clear that the process does not fully align with the aims of the current doctorate and that modest changes could remedy this situation. The paper concludes with some suggestions for change which might enhance the assessment process of Australia's highest academic award and issues which need to be considered.

Descriptors: Student Evaluation, Foreign Countries, Doctoral Degrees, Doctoral Programs, Alignment (Education), Evaluation Criteria, Curriculum Evaluation, Degree Requirements, Evaluation Methods, Evaluation Research

National Tertiary Education Union. PO Box 1323, South Melbourne 3205, Australia. Tel: +61-3-92541910; Fax: +61-3-92541915; e-mail: editor[at]; Web site:

Autor: Kiley, Margaret


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