Graduate Research School

Entry requirements: Higher Degrees by Research

The University of Wollongong offers a range of HDR degree options for graduates. The doctoral program includes the PhD, PhD (Integrated) and professional doctorate degrees. We also offer the new research training pathway, the Master of Research. The PhD (Integrated) is a four year program comprising one year of coursework (with a qualifying grade) and three years thesis.

PhD and Professional doctorates

The entry to these degrees is based on a demonstrated capacity to undertake significant research in the proposed field. This means that you should have completed advanced coursework in a relevant field of study; initial research training in appropriate methods; and a research project resulting in a written report or comparable output.

Research ability may be demonstrated in a variety of ways:

  • An Australian honours degree (an undergraduate degree plus an additional year of supervised research). To apply for a research masters degree, the minimum standard for the honours year is typically honours 2:1.
  • A research masters degree with at least 2/3 of the degree comprising a thesis.
  • A UOW Masters of Research training pathway degree (or equivalent at other Australian Universities). The minimum  standard is typically a WAM of 75.
  • A coursework masters degree or graduate diploma which includes a research project or thesis of 10,000 to 20,000 words with a minimum WAM of 70%( or GPA of 3.5 out of 4), and research methodology units.
  • Relevant postgraduate research experience.
  • One or more independently peer-reviewed journal articles, publications, or conference papers.
  • Professional reporting or prior learning.
  • Research related awards or prizes.
  • Other evidence of research ability.

PhD (Integrated)

Entry to this degree requires  a minimum of four years of study at degree level, either a four-year bachelor degree, or a bachelor degree plus masters by coursework, with a minimum credit average of 65% (or GPA 3.0 out of 4.0), or equivalent. Note that the 48cp of coursework in the first year of the degree is intended to build disciplinary knowledge and research capacity. A credit average (65%) plus a minimum of 65% in nominated research training subjects is needed for candidates to progress to the thesis component of this degree.

Master of Research (and Bachelor of Research)

Entry to these degrees require a 3 or 4 year undergraduate or coursework Master degree with a minimum WAM of 65% (or GPA of 3 out of 4).

Master of Philosophy

For this degree any of the measures of research ability outlined for the PhD are acceptable, however the minimum standard for an Australian honours degree is 2:2 honours or a WAM of 60% (or a GPA of 2.8 out of 4) for a coursework masters’ degree. For all research degree applications you must provide demonstrated evidence of such achievements, which have been independently assessed. You should also include details on the nature of your research ability, such as the length and content of the program or research, with particular attention to the standard of any research component. If the evidence includes publications or reports with several authors, you should describe the contribution you have made to the paper. An interview may be requested to discuss this and other matters. The University will assess each case on its merits.


Last reviewed: 28 February, 2017
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