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Research and Innovation

Higher Degree by Research

Choose CDU for your research degree
  • Top 100 university globally for quality education

    According to the Times Higher Education University Impact Rankings 2021

  • Be supported by a research scholarship

    Available to domestic and international students

  • An elite 'Rising Star' challenger university in the Class of 2030

    According to Times Higher Education

Research degrees

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Health Science PhD candidate Tim Howarth

Our PhD program equips you to undertake independent research in your area of study.

Under the supervision of one of our leading researchers, pursue research that demonstrates a significant and original contribution to knowledge in your field.

Work alongside CDU researchers who are recognised nationally and internationally for their research excellence.

You will be supported throughout your candidature and publish research that will add value to our community and the world.

What's involved in a PhD?

Offering

PhDs can be undertaken at all CDU Colleges and the Menzies School of Health Research.

Duration

The minimum period of candidature for a full-time candidate is two (2) years from the date of commencement and four (4) years for a part-time candidate.

The maximum period of candidature for a full-time candidate is four (4) years from the date of commencement and eight (8) years from the date of commencement for a part-time candidate.

Commitment

Full-time: Minimum commitment of 35 to 40 hours per week.

Part-time: Minimum commitment of 15 hours per week.

Assessment

A thesis of no more than 100,000 words.

Master by Research (MRes)
RIEL researchers

As a Master by Research student at CDU, you’ll represent some of Australia's best and brightest minds.

A Masters by Research (MRes) requires completion of an original piece of research that makes a significant contribution to knowledge in the candidate's field of research.

Study and work in the context of our regional focus, which prioritises the complex issues facing Northern Australia and the Asia-Pacific.

What's involved in an MRes?

Offering

MRes can be undertaken at all CDU Colleges and the Menzies School of Health Research.

Duration

The minimum period of candidature for a full-time candidate is one (1) year from the date of commencement, and two (2) years for a part-time candidate.

The maximum period of candidature for a full-time candidate is two (2) years from the date of commencement and four (4) years for a part-time candidate.

Commitment

Full-time: Minimum commitment of 35 to 40 hours per week

Part-time: Minimum commitment of 15 hours per week.

Assessment

A thesis of no more than 50,000 words.

 

Your research degree questions answered

Am I eligible to enrol in a research degree?

To decide which applicants to accept, the University considers the academic qualifications, research experience, and other characteristics of the candidate and research proposal.   The following table presents more information about eligibility.  Typically, applicants tend to be eligible to enrol in a

  • PhD if they have completed at least one semester of research activity at an Honours or Masters level and achieved a distinction average--or completed equivalent activity
  • Masters by Research if they have completed at least half a semester of research activity at an Honours or Masters level--or completed equivalent activity
Information to read Contents
Specifies in detail how the University evaluates who is eligible
Offers recommendations on how to become more eligible to receive an offer or a scholarship
How do I choose a research topic?

Before you apply to study a research degree at CDU, you will need to develop a research project and organise a supervisor.  The following table outlines some insights on how develop your research project.

Information to read Contents
Offers some insights on how to develop your research questions.  For example, this document recommends you combine your favourite publications to generate a novel perspective
Click this link This webpage presents an array of resources you can use to review the literature, choose suitable methods, write your proposal effectively, and so forth.  

 

How do I find a research supervisor?

After you have clarified your research field and topic, you need to locate an academic at CDU who is willing to supervise your work.  To achieve this goal, you could

  • click the options above, under "Find a project or supervisor"
  • visit https://researchers.cdu.edu.au/ to enter keywords around your research interests

 

What is the cost of a research degree

Domestic candidates

Domestic candidates incur no fees if they complete their degree within the allocated time. Candidates may also be eligible to receive a living allowance, often worth about $28 700, while they complete the research project. Learn more about domestic scholarships.

International students

International candidates often pay fees to undertake a research degree at CDU.  However, if their record is especially strong, they might receive a fee waiver or even an additional living allowance, often worth about $28 700, while they complete the research project.  Learn more about international scholarships.

How do I apply?

Domestic students

If you believe you might be eligible and have organised a supervisor, complete the application form, gather your supporting documents, and lodge your application.

 

International students

International application information.

What is the difference between a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) and a Master by Research (MRes)

The main difference between a PhD and MRes is the duration of study, length of the thesis, and level of originality.

 

Doctor of Philosophy

Master by Research

Minimum duration

Two years full-time or four years part-time.

One year full-time or two years part-time.

Maximum duration

Four years full-time or eight years part-time, from your start date.

Two years full-time or four years part-time, from your start date.

Thesis length

Maximum of 100,000 words.

Maximum of 50,000 words.

Time commitment

40 hours per week for a full-time student.

20 hours per week for a part-time student.

40 hours per week for a full-time student.

20 hours per week for a part-time student.

Access the domestic application pack

Apply

Research scholarships

Domestic students

International students

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