Means exactly what you think it means. You sit there, your thesis/dissertation proposal shaking in your shaking hands, darkness all around except for a single incandescent lightbulb hanging over your head. Your committee is gathered around you, barking so many questions so quickly that you don't even have time to answer. After ten hours, you are reduced to tears. And just as you're about to say, "fine, I knew this proposal sucked. I throw in the towel, this meeting's adjourned," they all sit back, the lights come on, one professor sips his coffee, and they all say, "uh, yeah, guess it's ok. You'll be changing it completely, anyway. Guess we'll pass her and give her the privilege of writing the thesis/dissertation. Anyone need more coffee?"
Sample sentence: "Defend yourself, grad student!"