I know that doing a PhD degree and (mostly) paying for it myself is a position of cultural and educational privilege. This makes the following a little trivial in the bigger scheme of things.
EDIT: I registered for the first time in January 2010. I handed my approved-for-examination thesis to the Exams Office at NUI Maynooth on February 26th last. The submission form was not signed by the Fees Office because I knew that they would not sign it. They had previously confirmed that I had to pay one more year’s fees (€3,427) before it could be ‘accepted’. The Exams Office took in the form and thesis volumes although phoned me later to say that the form was incomplete. Earlier this month, I went back to the Exams Office and collected the incomplete form but was not asked to take back the volumes. So the thesis has been accepted by the university’s Academic Council for examination but not by the Fees Office. The Registrar of the university will not send the thesis volumes to the approved internal and external examiners until I pay a fifth year of fees. No money? No degree.
According to a Graduate Studies online policy, a full time doctoral student can be examined following four semesters (two years) having paid €10,194 in fees. Why are part-time students asked to hand over €17,135 for a five year (it used to be six) period for the same outcome? In other words: