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Higher Degree by Research

CDU has a range of options for you to complete your HDR

Apply to undertake your Higher Degree by Research (HDR) at CDU, and you’ll be supported by committed supervisors who are experts in their fields, while you work in a distinct and unique part of Australia.

Entry requirements

Completing your Master by Research or PhD is an opportunity to specialise in your chosen field and contribute to delivering real and measurable impact in Northern Australia and beyond. Find out what you can study with CDU.

Master by Research (MRes)

To be eligible for entry to an MRes, you should have completed either:

  1.  a Bachelor Honours degree with first-class or second-class honours

  2.  a Master by Coursework or Extended Masters, which contains a substantial research component

Learn more about the Masters by Research

Doctor of Philosophy

To be eligible for entry to a PhD you should have completed either:

  1.  a Bachelor Honours degree with first-class honours or second-class honours division

  2.  a Master's qualification that contains a substantial research component

Learn more about the Doctor of Philosophy

English entry requirements for HDR degrees

A minimum IELTS (Academic) score of 6.5 with no band less than 6.0, or an equivalent English proficiency test result is required for entry into a Higher Degree by Research at CDU. However, please refer to the entry requirements page for more information on the forms of demonstrating English language proficiency.

For more information on Honours' equivalence and documentation (for example copies of peer-reviewed academic publications), see Higher degree by Research – Admission and Enrolment Procedure.

Research scholarships

Find details about Research Training Program (RTP) Scholarships

How to apply

Step 1: Are you eligible to apply?

To be eligible for a Masters by Research, you must have completed

  • the equivalent of half a semester of research activity at a postgraduate level
  • comparable levels of research, such as scholarly publications.

To be eligible for a Doctor of Philosophy, you must have completed

  • the equivalent of one semester of research activity, such as a thesis, at a Masters level
  • the equivalent of one semester of research activity at an Honours or Graduate Diploma level and achieved a distinction or higher overall
  • comparable levels of research, such as scholarly publications
Step 2: Identify a project and supervisor

Identifying a supervisor and a project is a crucial step before applying for admission into a research degree at CDU:

  • If you have not already developed a project outline here is a list of projects that CDU academics are willing to supervise.
  • If you have not identified a supervisor, please skim our supervisor profiles or for more comprehensive information visit our Research Webportal

As part of the application process, you must provide written confirmation from a CDU supervisor that they are willing to supervise your proposed project.

Step 3: Collate the necessary documentation

The online application process allows you to attach the relevant documents to your application. The following forms and documents are required to be submitted:

  • Certified copies of all post-secondary qualification documents such as transcripts of results, award certificates, grading systems, and English translations, if required
  • Project Outline – all applications must be accompanied by a brief research outline (1500-1700 words or 3-4 pages) on the proposed research project.  Your outline should include: project title; general field of research; proposed principal supervisor; brief description; ethical considerations; resource implications; field work requirements; and any other relevant issues to the research.
  • Proof of English language proficiency – please visit our Entry Requirement page for more information:
  • Copy of passport showing personal and visa details
  • Detailed CV / Resume with a list of publications
  • Two referee reports should be completed via this online form
  • A well-written Statement of Purpose (Single) or Statement of Purpose (Family)
  • Supervisor’s confirmation in writing (e.g. email correspondence)
  • Other supporting documentation, if applicable
Step 4: Apply online

Applications to CDU must be submitted online. The process is simple; all you need is a valid email address to create your online account. Once you have started the application, you will have the option of saving your application and resuming it later. There is no application fee when you apply online.

Higher Degree by Research degrees are categorised as either low-cost or high-cost fields of education. Applicants can select either low-cost or high-cost during the application process, however, these costs are determined upon approval for an offer of admission. There is no difference in the entry requirements or documents required for a full application.

Apply now

If you require further assistance, please contact CDU Global.

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