Doctor of Philosophy
Foster your independent research skills, scholarly analysis and ability to communicate research findings.
A PhD is awarded on the basis of a thesis produced under supervision that makes an original, significant and extensive contribution to knowledge in the relevant field of study, as judged by independent experts applying accepted contemporary international standards.
DurationFull-time or equivalent part-time Only a full-time option is available to international students on a Student visa. Online programs are not available to Student visa holders.
Indicative 2023 fees (A$)Annual fee / Estimated total fee
- Delivery mode
- Internal, external
- 4 years 4 years
- CRICOS code
- UniSC program code
A Higher Degree by Research (HDR) is a supervised research program that requires original research resulting in a thesis or a thesis and exegesis.
During the PhD program, PhD candidates are required to achieve several milestones that relate to their research training.
Milestones are program requirements and periodic assessments of candidature progression. Milestones are distributed throughout HDR candidature providing structure and mechanism for regular review and feedback on progress towards both the research project and attainment of the University’s Research Graduate Attributes.
In addition to HDR program milestones, some candidates may also have:
- project milestones (such as external progress reports to third party funding providers) that they are required to contribute to; and
- scholarship conditions as specified in their scholarship conditions document
Information on HDR milestones is available in the USC Higher Degree by Research Candidature Progression - Guidelines.
To be eligible for admission to a doctoral degree, an applicant must hold:
(a) a Bachelor Honours degree (AQF Level 8) with a significant research component with a minimum of Class IIA from a recognised higher education institution; or
(b) a Masters degree (AQF Level 9) with a significant research component equivalent to Honours degree research component from a recognised higher education institution; or
(c) a Bachelor degree (AQF Level 7) from a recognised higher education institution, and shall have achieved by subsequent work and study a standard equivalent to at least Class IIA Honours as may be approved by the Research Degrees Committee, or the Chairperson acting on behalf of the Committee; or
(d) a record of research or professional qualifications deemed by the Research Degrees Committee, or the Chairperson acting on behalf of the Committee, to be of a standard equivalent to at least Bachelors Honours degree Class IIA and providing a suitable background for the doctoral research the candidate is proposing to undertake.
In addition to this, applicants undertaking a PhD in creative arts are required to:
(e) provide a portfolio containing evidence of the applicant’s own original work which is assessed by the Head of School, as providing evidence of very high levels of creativity, knowledge and skill in one or more creative areas.
Refer also to the University’s English language requirements.
Admission is subject to availability of appropriate supervision and facilities.
- Annual tuition fee (A$, 2023)
- Estimated total tuition fee (A$, 2023)
Domestic higher degree by research applicants are assessed for a fee-offset scholarship as part the program admission assessment process.
If successful, this information will be included in the Description of Candidature which is provided with the Offer of Admission.
The maximum period of a fee-offset scholarship for full-time candidates is four years for Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) students and two years for Master by Research candidates (part time equivalent).
After this time candidates will be liable for fees.
For information on how higher degree by research student fees are calculated, including the Student Services and Amenities Fee, visit the Higher Degree by Research Student Fee Calculation Information page.
International student fee information is available on the Tuition fees and other costs page. For information on how higher degree by research student fees are calculated, including the Student Services and Amenities Fee, visit the Higher Degree by Research Student Fee Calculation Information page. Visit the HDR scholarships page for information on available scholarships.
Estimated total tuition fees are based on 2023 rates and the minimum number of courses required within the programs standard duration.
Annual tuition fees are based on 2023 rates and the equivalent full-time student load as per the recommended study sequence in the relevant program.
Actual fees payable are based on the actual enrolment load in a teaching period (excluding Study Abroad and Postgraduate Qualifying Pathway).
All prices quoted are in Australian Dollars (A$).
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