Higher Degrees by Research Scholarships - Procedures | UniSC | University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Higher Degrees by Research Scholarships - Procedures

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Approval authority
Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation)
Responsible Executive member
Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation)
Designated officer
Dean, Graduate Research
First approved
28 November 2016
Last amended
20 December 2021
Review date
21 December 2026
Related documents
Linked documents
Superseded documents
  • Selection of Candidates for Postgraduate Research Scholarships - Procedures
Related legislation / standards
  • Higher Education Support Act 2003 (Cth)
  • Commonwealth Scholarships Guidelines (Research) 2017

1. Purpose of procedures

1.1 These procedures are intended to implement the Scholarships, Bursaries and Prizes – Governing Policy and the Research Training Program Scholarships – Operational Policy, and also apply to other HDR Scholarships at the University.

2. Scope and application

2.1 These procedures apply to all staff and prospective applicants for, and recipients of, a Research Training Program Scholarship.

3. Definitions

Please refer to the University’s Glossary of Terms for policies and procedures. Terms and definitions identified below are specific to these procedures and are critical to its effectiveness:

The Panel means the HDR Scholarship Selection Panel, selected by the Dean, Graduate Research to assess and rank applications for HDR Scholarships by order of merit.

HDR Scholarship means any financial support awarded by a competitive process to a student undertaking a higher degree by research (HDR). This includes both University Research Scholarships and Research Training Program (RTP) Scholarships.

Competitive Process means a recruitment and selection process that encompasses an external advertisement period of a minimum of two weeks and a selection process as outlined in section 4.1

4. Procedures

4.1 Application and Selection

4.1.1 The Dean, Graduate Research will set an application closing date. Complete applications received on or before the closing date will be considered. Late applications and or supporting documentation will not be considered.

4.1.2 Applicants address each of the eligibility and selection criteria by attaching supporting documentary evidence to their HDR Scholarship application form. Applicants are responsible for providing all relevant documentation in support of their application.

4.1.3 Eligible applications will be forwarded to the relevant School for academic assessment against the selection criteria. For information on the Eligibility and Selection criteria, refer to the relevant HDR Scholarship advertisement on the University website.

4.1.4 A HDR Scholarships Selection Panel (the Panel) will be appointed by the Dean, Graduate Research to consider applications for all HDR Scholarships. The Panel will place each application that has been accepted by the School in order of merit according to their ranking as outlined in the Higher Degrees by Research Scholarships - Awarding Guidelines, and will prepare an Order of Merit List for the Dean, Graduate Research to consider.

4.1.5 The Order of Merit list is ratified by the Dean, Graduate Research. Once an order of merit list has been ratified, changes will only be made in response to a decision regarding a review or appeal, as indicated in section 4.4, or when finalising provisional grades.

4.1.6 The Order of Merit list is confidential and distribution limited at the discretion of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation) or Dean, Graduate Research. The Dean, Graduate Research, reserves the right to use discretion in the allocation of any scholarships including the number of scholarships offered each year within the limits of available funding.

4.1.7 The Graduate Research School will advise all applicants in writing of the outcome of their application for a HDR Scholarship as soon as possible after the decision.

4.1.8 Letters of offer will include specific scholarship inclusions and estimated combined annual value, and will be accompanied by the relevant Scholarship Conditions.

4.2 Acceptance

4.2.1 Successful applicants must return advice regarding their acceptance of the HDR Scholarship offer by the response to offer due date (normally within one month of offer). Applicants who do not respond by the due date forfeit their HDR Scholarship offer and an offer will be made to the next applicant on the Order of Merit list.

4.2.2 Successful applicants may request a single deferment of commencement. The application for deferral must be approved by the relevant Deputy Head of School (Research) or the Head of School or the Dean, Graduate Research. Where applicable, the International Office, will also review the application to allow appropriate reconsideration of the availability of resources required for the program.

4.3 Scholarship maintenance

4.3.1 Candidates in receipt of a HDR Scholarship at the University are governed by the Higher Degrees by Research – Academic Policy and associated Procedures.

4.3.2 HDR Scholarship holders must familiarise themselves with the Scholarship Conditions provided to them with their offer.

4.3.3 HDR Scholarship holders who fail to notify the University of a change to their circumstances which impacts their HDR Scholarship entitlements will be required to repay any subsequent overpayment, usually through suspension of payments until such an overpayment is balanced.

4.3.4 Candidates who are found to have provided misleading or inaccurate information to the University will be immediately reassessed for their eligibility for a HDR Scholarship.

4.4 Student grievances

4.4.1 An unsuccessful applicant, or a HDR Scholarship holder may raise a grievance about a decision relating to a HDR Scholarship as per the Student Grievance Resolution – Governing Policy and Student Grievances – Procedures.