Information on Coronavirus

for postgraduate researchers 

Page updated 25 November 2020 

College wide information can be found on the 2020/21 Information Hub.

Coronavirus information messages sent to the Royal Holloway email address of all current postgraduate researchers:

We will not be sending out any further specific coronavirus newsletters but will inform you of return to campus updates via the Researcher Monthly newsletter, our webpages and Twitter (@RHULDocSchool). 

Can I travel outside of the UK to study?

The College's Director of Health and Safety has created some advice about what travel / study is permitted outside of the UK at the moment.

Find out more

How will my supervision continue during this period?

Supervision should have moved online  e.g. via MS Teams, Skype, Facetime etc.

If your supervisor is not available for periods of time due to Coronavirus, remember that you have your second supervisor or advisor whom you can also contact for support

Where can I go for advice and support during this period?

Intranet /  email: Ensure you keep updated on official College advice and guidance by checking back on this page regularly and checking your College email account regularly.

Supervisory team: Discuss any concerns you may have with your supervisor(s). Your supervisory team is there to support you and they should help you come up with a contingency plan to ensure you are able to re-prioritise and continue to be productive in the event of various types of disruption.

Wellbeing: If you have specific coronavirus concerns, please contact  The Student Advisory and Wellbeing team is there to support you with other well-being concerns, for example coping with increased feelings of isolation.

International Student Support Office: If you are studying on a Tier 4 visa and have returned home due to Covid-19 and are concerned about how this may affect your visa, please contact

Doctoral School: For support and advice on PGR regulations, policy and procedures, please contact

Visit the Wellbeing for PGRs webpage

Tips for working well remotely


I was not eligible in stage 1 of the Covid-19 deadline extension request scheme to apply for a deadline / funding extension but I am concerned that Coronavirus has impacted my research. What should I do to extend my submission / funding deadline?

  • Stage 1 of the Covid-19 deadline extension request scheme has now been completed. 
  • UKRI has recently provided guidance to HEIs about the extension scheme for stage 2.  The College aims to have the new process set up early in the spring term.   Doctoral School will be in contact to inform you of stage 2 of the Covid-19 deadline extension request scheme once it has been launched.

Find out more

Can I interrupt if my research is being impacted by coronavirus?

If you are self-funding, you may decide to interrupt instead of requesting an extension.  Details on how to interrupt can be found here. Please note that, if you are a Tier 4 student, you are not able to interrupt retrospectively.

It is recommended that if you are a funded student, you do not interrupt as your stipend payments may be paused during your period of interruption.

I'm on a Tier 4 visa.  Where can I get advice about how an extension or interruption may affect my visa?

Please contact the International Student Support Office at

I am not able to come to campus.  Will my annual review go ahead as scheduled?

Your meeting can be held remotely, using for example MS Teams, Skype or Zoom.  All the necessary paperwork can be submitted remotely.

I am not able to come to campus.  Will my upgrade meeting go ahead as scheduled?

Your meeting can be held remotely, using for example MS Teams, Skype or Zoom.  All parties involved must agree to this course of action. All the necessary paperwork can be submitted remotely.

My thesis submission deadline is approaching.  How can I submit my thesis?

There is no longer the requirement to submit two hard copies of your thesis.  You therefore only need to submit your electronic copy to by your submission deadline, together with the declaration of number of words form.

The exception to this would be if either of your examiners specifically requested a hard copy, in which case the Doctoral School will let you know.

I am not able to come to campus. Will my viva go ahead as scheduled?

You have the option for your viva to go ahead remotely via video conference or to have it held face-to-face.  For further details, please read:

Conducting online vivas - guide for candidates

Will there be a delay in the issuing of my degree certificate?

The Diploma Production Office in central London, which issues University of London certificates, re-opened in early July.  Certificates are normally issued by them within 3 - 6 months of your award date but they inevitably have a backlog to work through so please be patient.  You will be sent an award letter by the Doctoral School once your award has been processed but if you require any further proof of award in the meantime, please contact us.

When will the Graduation ceremonies take place?

We are very sorry to advise you that, given the restrictions currently in place in England to manage the global pandemic, it will not be possible to hold our usual winter celebratory events for graduating students.

Find out more


Contact us

By email:

Find out how our Helpdesk team can help you online

 Quick links

2020/21 Information Hub

Covid-19 extension requests

If you have specific queries regarding Coronavirus, contact