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  • World class research

    The Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences is consistently ranked as one of the most outstanding academies for research in the humanities and social sciences, ranked 15th in the world in the 2017 QS World University Rankings by Subject.

  • #1 in Australia

    Our graduates are ranked 1st in Australia and 5th in the world for employability by the QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2019.

Overview

Candidates for the degree of Master of Philosophy (MPhil) research and write a thesis of 40,000 -60,000 words on an approved topic under the supervision of a member of the academic staff. Research can be undertaken in any one of the Faculty's schools  including the School of Economics; Literature, Art and Media; Languages and Culture; Philosophical and Historical Inquiry; and Social and Political Sciences.

Research in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences extends across a diverse range of disciplines in the humanities and social sciences, embracing traditional, emerging and cross-disciplinary subjects. Staff in the Faculty enjoy international reputations in their chosen fields, reflected in the high level of publications-books, articles, chapters and conference papers-generated by Faculty academics each year.

The Master of Philosophy (MPhil) may be complete in one to two years full-time or two to four years part-time.

Subject areas
Shared pool

Entry, fees, funding & how to apply

Depends on your qualification, citizenship status
The details on this page based on your selections are a guide only, and are subject to change.

Your entry requirements

English language proficiency

Find out if you need to prove English language proficiency (depends on your country of origin and educational background).

For academic requirements check the ‘Admission requirements’ section on this page.

Your fee

Your funding & scholarships

How to apply

Applications are open all year round. Apply well in advance (at least 6 weeks prior to your start date) to allow for a timely response to your application. If your application cannot be processed in time, it will be considered for the next possible research period. Separate scholarship application deadlines apply.

Starting date

Research Period 2: Start date 1 Mar

Research Period 3: Start date 1 Jul 

Research Period 4: Start date 1 Oct (2019 only, not available from 2020)

Refer to key research dates on the `How to Apply website.

Applications are open all year round. Apply well in advance of your start date to allow for a timely response to your application and necessary visa and travel arrangements. If your application cannot be processed in time, it will be considered for the next possible research period. Separate scholarship application deadlines apply.

Starting date

Research Period 2: Start date 1 Mar

Research Period 3: Start date 1 Jul 

Research Period 4: Start date 1 Oct (2019 only, not available from 2020)

Refer to key research dates on the `How to Apply website.

Research areas

MPhil candidates in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences may undertake research in over 40 subject areas located in the faculty's five schools. These are the Schools of Economics; Languages and Cultures; Literature, Art and Media; Philosophical and Historical Inquiry; and Social and Political Sciences.

Research may also be undertaken in association with prominent humanities and social sciences research centres or groups.

Applying for admission

Prospective students with an Honours degree awarded in the second class or a Master's degree without a thesis component should consult the Postgraduate Research Coordinator of the relevant department before making an application.

  1. Find a supervisor within the University whose academic background aligns with your research. You may visit a Research Supervisor Connect to start.
  2. Contact a research supervisor either through Research Supervisor Connect or email and provide: your academic/educational background and research experience with examples such as an academic transcript your CV/resume the area of interest for your PhD why you believe your research topics align with this supervisor.
  3. In conjunction with your supervisor, develop a preliminary research proposal of at least 500 words that outlines the subject area, objectives and significance of your research.
  4. Obtain two academic referee reports, each one written by a referee who is familiar with your previous academic achievements. 

Completion requirement

Thesis submission requirements and examination procedure as set out in the Academic Board resolutions for this course and the Higher Degree (HDR) Rule 2011.

Admission requirement

To be eligible for admission to the Master of Philosophy (Arts and Social Sciences) you must have completed the equivalent of one of the following in a subject area related to your proposed research area:

  • a bachelor's degree with first class or second class honours master's degree by research; or
  • a master's degree by coursework with an independent research component such as a thesis, dissertation or research project with a minimum overall pass average of 75% or above.

These constitute the minimum requirements for eligibility and do not guarantee admission. This remains at the discretion of the relevant supervisors and departments. The University must certify that there are sufficient supervisory and other resources and facilities available to enable your candidature to be completed successfully.

Course opportunities

The faculty is home to more than 90 research and teaching centres incuding the the faculty’s newest research centre, the Sydney Social Sciences and Humanities Advanced Research Centre (SSSHARC). Along with our world-renowned schools, these provide abundant research opportunities with academic staff members who are experts and leaders in their fields of research.

To help you understand common terms that we use at the University, we offer an online glossary.