Approved late submission

If there have been research related (that is reasons beyond your control) that you are unable to submit your thesis before your enrolment end date, your advisory committee can support you to be approved for late submission.

Late submission allows you to submit your thesis after your normal enrolment end date (ie. maximum course duration).

  1. A discussion about whether you are eligible for approval for late submission will be part of your progress review meeting with your supervisors and advisory committee. Use the progress review form sent to you by your Graduate School.
  2. Complete the form with your advisory committee and return it to your graduate research administrator.
  3. If you are approved, your enrolment will become inactive, and you will be recorded as approved for a late submission.
  4. This will allow you to submit your thesis (or its creative equivalent) after the expiration of your maximum course duration.

Contact your graduate research administrator to request a copy of your progress review form if you have not already received it via email.

Didn't this used to be called lapse?

In July 2017 the terminology of lapse in good standing is being phased out and late submission is in its place.

If you reach the end of your maximum course duration on or before 31 December 2017 you will be allowed to apply to lapse. The last date of your lapse period is known as your last date to submit.

If you reach the end of your maximum course duration after 1 January 2018 you may be eligible for late submission.


  • Late submission can be granted for up to two calendar years for PhD students, and up to one calendar year for Masters (by Research) students.
  • Late submission can be approved only for documented research related reasons beyond your control which prevented you from submitting your thesis during your enrolment. For example:
    • delays to ethics approval;
    • unexpected change of direction of research due to external or other factors (for example, legislative requirements);
    • delays to experimental work;
    • delays in being granted visa approval to travel to another country/countries to access research sites and/or archival repositories;
    • delays in accessing (or loss of) archival, museum or other research sites;
    • loss of data;
    • equipment breakdown; or
    • loss of access to equipment.
  • Late submission is only granted to you if you've completed the maximum course duration.
  • If you still need to use University facilities, work on University premises or require meetings with your supervisors, you should discuss your options with your advisory committee. In this case, an extension of candidature beyond the maximum may be permitted. This is considered to be an approval for late submission.
  • If your candidature has been set to lapsed/late submission for some time it is possible that you may no longer be able to access University systems such as my.unimelb, or the Thesis Examination System. You may need to request that the access be reinstated by using the Special Access to University Facilities - Application for Reinstatement of Access form.
  • You will not be permitted to submit your thesis after an approved late submission period and extensions to the maximum submission date (ie. late submission deadline) are not granted.

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