Master of Philosophy

The degree of Master of Philosophy is a University degree governed by the degree resolutions and the University of Sydney (Higher Degree by Research) Rule 2011 (as amended).

Candidates should be familiar with this Rule.

The Academic Board Thesis and Examination of Higher Degrees by Research Policy 2015 and Procedure 2020, and Progress Planning and Review for Higher Degree by Research Students Policy 2015 and Procedures 2020 are also relevant to this degree and can be accessed via the University Policy Register.


The degree of Master of Philosophy is a research degree awarded for a thesis considered to be a substantially original contribution to the subject concerned. Six credit points of coursework will need to be completed from Table R.

Applicants should normally hold a bachelor's degree with at least a credit grade in the senior level unit(s) of study relevant to the proposed area of research or an equivalent qualification from another university or institution.

The degree may be taken on either a full-time or part-time basis. The first full year of candidature is normally on probation.

In the case of full-time candidates, the minimum period of candidature is one year and the maximum period of candidature is two years.

Part-time candidature may be approved for applicants who can demonstrate that they are engaged in an occupation or other activity which leaves them substantially free to pursue their candidature for the degree. They should be able to devote at least 20 hours per week to candidature or an equivalent annual period made up in blocks.

The minimum period of candidature for part-time candidates will be two years and the maximum period of candidature is four years, although it should be noted that the maximum is dependent on the proportion of full-time and part-time enrolment.

 

Master of Philosophy


These resolutions must be read in conjunction with applicable University By-laws, Rules and policies. These include:
– the Resolutions of the Faculty;
– the University of Sydney (Higher Degree by Research) Rule 2011 (the HDR Rule); and
– the Research Code of Conduct 2013; and the Research Data Management Policy 2014.
Additionally, the coursework components of this award course are subject to:
– the University of Sydney (Coursework) Rule 2014 (the 'Coursework Rule');
– the Coursework Policy 2014;
– the Academic Honesty in Coursework Policy 2015; and
– the Academic Honesty Procedures 2016.
The latest versions of all such documents are available from the Policy Register: sydney.edu.au/policies.

Course resolutions

Part 1: Preliminary

1 Course codes

Code

Course and stream title

RMPHLSCI-02

Master of Philosophy

Part 2: Admission requirements

2 Eligibility for admission to candidature

(1)
Subject to sub-clause (2) and (3), to be eligible for admission by a Dean or Associate Dean to candidature for the Master of Philosophy, an applicant must hold or have completed all the academic requirements, in a subject area related to the proposed course of advanced study and research, for a University of Sydney:
(a)
Master’s degree; or
(b)
Bachelor’s degree with honours; or
(c)
Bachelor’s degree with a result of at least a Credit grade in the senior level unit(s) of study relevant to the proposed area of research.
(2)
The Dean or Associate Dean may admit to candidature an applicant who does not meet the requirements of sub-clause (1), provided that the applicant holds a qualification or qualifications that, in the opinion of The Postgraduate Research Education Committee (PREC) are equivalent to those prescribed in sub-clause (1).
(3)
The Dean or Associate Dean may impose on a student admitted to candidature pursuant to sub-clause (2) such conditions as the Dean or Associate Dean considers appropriate.

3 Application for admission to candidature

(1)
An applicant for admission to candidature for a Master’s degree must submit to the Faculty:
(a)
a proposed course of advanced study and research approved by the Postgraduate Coordinator, in which the work is to be undertaken;
(b)
satisfactory evidence of the applicant’s eligibility for admission; and
(c)
a statement certifying the applicant's understanding that, subject to the University of Sydney (Higher Degree by Research) Rule 2011; and Academic Board policies and procedures for Higher Degrees by Research, if the candidature is successful, their thesis will be lodged with the University Librarian and made available for immediate public use.

4 Credit transfer

The HDR Rule specifies the conditions for the granting of credit for previous studies, including the effect on completion times.

Part 3: Candidature

5 Control of candidature

The HDR Rule specifies the conditions for the control of candidature by the University.

6 Appointment of supervisor

The Postgraduate Coordinator will appoint supervisors for each candidate in accordance with the HDR Rule and Academic Board policies and procedures for Higher Degrees by Research supervision.

7 Other studies during candidature

(1)
Complete units of study and any other activities described in the milestones document for the degree.
(2)
The Head of School may from time to time require a student to attend, undertake or complete assessment for lectures, seminars, courses or practical work during the course of the candidature, in accordance with the HDR Rule. This may include enrolment in units of study.

8 Location of candidature and attendance

The HDR Rule specifies the conditions for the location of candidature and attendance by candidates at the University.

Part 4: Enrolment and progression

9 Probation

A candidate is normally accepted for candidature on a probationary basis for a period not exceeding one year according to the provisions of the HDR Rule.

10 Time limits, earliest and latest submission dates

(1)
A full time student may not submit a thesis for examination earlier than the end of four research periods (HDR Rule) of enrolled candidature and a student who has undertaken all of their candidature on a part-time basis must not submit their thesis for examination earlier than the end of twelve research periods of enrolled candidature.
(2)
Where a student has undertaken their candidature as a mixture of part-time candidature and full-time candidature, a part-time research period will be counted as the equivalent of one half of a full-time research period, and the student must not submit their thesis for examination earlier than the end of four equivalent full-time research periods of enrolled candidature.
(3)
The HDR Rule specifies the latest completion times and submission dates for full- and part-time candidates in this course.

11 Mode of attendance

The attendance pattern for this course is full-time or part-time as approved by the Associate Dean.

12 Discontinuation of candidature

A candidate may discontinue enrolment in the degree subject to the conditions specified by the HDR Rule.

13 Suspension of candidature

A candidate may suspend enrolment from the degree subject to the conditions specified by the HDR Rule.

14 Leave of absence

A candidate may take leave of absence from the degree subject to the conditions specified by the HDR Rule.

15 Progress

A candidate is required to maintain and demonstrate satisfactory progress towards the timely completion of the degree. Progress will be reviewed at intervals no longer than one year according to the provisions of the HDR Rule and Academic Board policies and procedures for Higher Degrees by Research progress planning and review.

Part 5: Requirements

16 Degree requirements

(1)
To satisfy the requirements of the degree candidates must:
(a)
Satisfactorily complete any specified requirements of admission or probation;
(b)
If commencing during or after 2021, complete within the first year (full-time equivalency) of candidature a minimum of 6 credit points of study from Table R as determined in the relevant Faculty milestones statement, and any other studies as required by the supervisor(s) of the research project;
(c)
conduct research on an approved topic; and
(d)
submit a document embodying the results of the research as a thesis that passes the examination.

17 The thesis

(1)
A candidate shall produce a thesis that meets the requirements specified in the HDR Rule and Academic Board policies and procedures for examination of Higher Degrees by Research thesis examinations.
(2)
The required length of the thesis is a total upper limit of 50,000 words, as described in the Academic Board policies and procedures for examination of Higher Degrees by Research thesis examinations.

Part 6: Examination

18 Examination of the thesis

Examination of the thesis will be conducted in general accordance with relevant standards prescribed by Academic Board policies and procedures for Higher Degrees by Research thesis examinations for the Master's by research, which are set out in the Thesis and Examination of Higher Degree by Research Policy 2015. The HDR Examinations Subcommittee will determine the results of the examination.

19 Award of the degree

The degree is awarded at the Pass level only.

Part 7: Other

20 Transitional provisions

(1)
These course resolutions apply to students who commenced their candidature after 1 January 2021 and to students who commenced their candidature prior to 1 January 2021 and elect to proceed under these resolutions.
(2)
Candidates who commenced their candidature prior to 1 January 2021 may complete the requirements in accordance with the resolutions in force at the time of their commencement.