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Australian Government RTP Scholarship (Domestic)

Postgraduate research scholarships
The Australian Government Research Training Program (RTP) scholarships provide financial assistance to domestic students enrolled in or commencing a postgraduate research degree.

Highlights

Value Eligibility Open date Close date
$35,950 pa
  • Domestic student
  • Commencing or enrolled in a postgraduate research degree
N/A N/A

How to apply

Apply per key deadlines.

RTP stipend scholarships are  awarded in November, February and June. Therefore, you must submit all required documentations for your admission application, and Research Experience evidence (if applicable) to be considered in the relevant award timeline. Please note that you may be notified of your RTP scholarship outcome at a different time to receiving your offer of study. 

Refer to the “Application and award timeline” table below for details. 

Current students can apply here.

Commencing students should select the checkbox to be considered for research scholarships when completing the admission application for your postgraduate research degree. A separate application is not required.

Refer to the documents for applicants for details of selection criteria, process, and additional documentation required if applicable.

Commencing research period Submission deadline* Offers received from
Research periods 1 and 2, 2022 30 November 2021 9 February 2022
Research periods 3 and 4, 2022 31 March 2022 1 June 2022

*New students must complete the RTP submission, along with their course application, by the submission deadline. Current HDR students will need to submit a separate application by the submission deadlines given above to be considered in a particular round..

If you are a domestic student, and applying for admission to Research period 3 or 4,  2022, you must submit all documentation (for admission and RTP scholarships) by 30 March 2022. 

 

Benefits

For 2022 awards, the RTP scholarships are valued at $35,950 per annum.

RTP Fees Offset Scholarship provides tuition fees to all domestic students as part of admission offer.

RTP Stipend Scholarship assists with living costs and is awarded through a competitive process.

Eligible RTP applicants are also automatically considered for University of Sydney Postgraduate Awards (UPA), which provide similar benefits and tenure.

Who's eligible

You must:

  • be an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident or New Zealand citizen
  • have an outstanding record of academic achievement and research potential
  • have an unconditional offer of admission or be currently enrolled in a Masters by Research or PhD at the University of Sydney.

Note: Applicants who are undertaking their first PhD degree will be the first priority to be considered for Research Training Program Scholarships.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander RTP

A dedicated pool of Research Training Program stipend scholarships has been created to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students for higher degree by research courses. Applicants who identify as Indigenous at the time of admission application for your research degree or in the Current Student Application Form will be considered. For the purpose of this award, applicants may be required to provide evidence as per Confirmation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Identity Policy 2015.

Background

The Australian Government Research Training Program (RTP) Scholarship scheme is funded by the Australian Government to provide financial assistance to domestic students enrolled in or commencing a postgraduate research degree.

All domestic students, upon being offered unconditional offer to undertake a higher degree by research course at an Australian university, will be offered an RTP Fees Offset Scholarship. Research Training Program (RTP) Stipend Scholarships are only awarded to students of exceptional research potential.

Terms and conditions

Eligibility

1. Applicants must be an Australian citizen, a New Zealand citizen or an Australian permanent resident at the time of award.

2. Research Training Program (RTP) Stipend Scholarship (‘the Scholarship’) holders are expected to enrol in a full-time postgraduate research degree. The University may approve a part-time RTP Stipend Scholarship* where the University is satisfied that there are special circumstances beyond the student’s control (for example medical conditions, financial hardship, carer’s responsibilities).

* A part-time scholarship may have tax implications and student should seek tax advice from registered tax agents.

Tenure

4. The Scholarship may be held for up to 3.5 years (full time) for Research Doctorate studies, or for up to two years for Research Masters studies if commenced prior 1 January 2019, or 1.75 years if commences on or after 1 January 2019. Periods of study already undertaken towards the degree prior to the commencement of the award will be deducted from the maximum tenure of the award.

5. No extensions are possible.

6. A student is expected to commence the Scholarship by the census date of their commencing intake, and during the year the Scholarship is awarded. If a student has commenced their studies, the scholarship may commence immediately.

7. A recipient may defer their RTP Scholarship for up to one research period with the approval of:

a. their supervisor; and
b. the relevant Associate Dean (Research Education).

8. RTP Stipends may be provided for the duration of an approved industry placement, research internship or professional practice activity (as stated in Clause 32 of this document) if:

a. the recipient already holds, and remains eligible for, a RTP Stipend;
b. no other income is received from these activities; and
c. the maximum duration of the RTP Stipend has not been reached.

Stipend and Allowances

9. Holders of the Scholarship will receive a stipend of $35,950 per annum (2022 rate), indexed annually on 1 January.

10. A student who relocates their place of residence to take up the Scholarship may claim an allowance for eligible expenses as published in the University’s Stipend Scholarship relocation allowance information.  The value of the allowance is up to $515 for each eligible adult and $255 for each eligible child. The absolute maximum value of relocation expenses that a student may receive is $1,485.

11. Students who commenced their postgraduate research degree studies in Sydney prior to the scholarship being awarded are not entitled to claim relocation allowance for travel to Sydney.

12. Reimbursement of up to $420 for Masters candidates and up to $840 for Doctoral candidates will be made for eligible claims for direct costs of producing a thesis in accordance with the University’s thesis allowance claim information. The claim must be lodged with the Higher Degree by Research Administration Centre (HDRAC - hdrac.scholarships@sydney.edu.au) within one year of submission of the thesis and no more than two years after termination of the award. Costs associated with printing a thesis are not eligible as printed thesis is no longer required for submission and examination.

13. Holders of the Scholarship may receive a concurrent award, scholarship or salary to undertake their research degree provided such award, scholarship or salary provides a benefit less than 75% of the Scholarship. The Scholarship will be terminated if this limit is exceeded. Salary for work unrelated to the student’s research is not subject to this limit.

 Tuition Fee

14. As an eligible Higher Degree by Research student, your tuition fees will be met by the Commonwealth Government’s Research Training Program for a period of up to 8 research periods for Research Masters and up to 16 research periods for Research Doctorate degrees.

15. RTP Fee Offset recipients are eligible to have their scholarship provided for the duration of an approved placement, research internship or professional practice activity. The total length of the RTP Fee Offset cannot extend beyond the maximum duration set out in Clause 14.

Selection Criteria

16. The successful applicant will be awarded the Scholarship on the basis of:

a. academic merit,
b. research experience,
c. availability of a high-quality research environment and resources to support the candidature, and
d. availability of high qualify supervisory arrangements to support the candidature

17. Preference may be given to applicants who:

a. identify as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person as per University of Sydney policy,
b. have not previously received an Australian Government or University Scholarship to complete an HDR course at the same level,
c. have not previously completed an HDR course at the same level of study.

18. The successful applicant will be awarded the Scholarship by the Higher Degrees by Research Scholarships Sub-Committee (HDRSSC) on the recommendation of the Faculty.

The University of Sydney will notify applicants of the outcome of their RTP Scholarship application by email to the student’s University email address (for current students), or the preferred email address contained in the student’s application for admission.

Leave Arrangements

19. Holders of the Scholarship receive up to 20 working days recreation leave every 12 months of the Scholarship and this may be accrued. Any unused leave when the Scholarship is terminated or completed will be forfeited. Recreation leave does not attract a leave loading. The supervisor's agreement must be obtained before leave is taken.

20. Holders of the Scholarship may take up to 10 working days sick leave every 12 months of the Scholarship and this may be accrued over the tenure of the Scholarship. Students with carer responsibility may convert up to five days of their annual sick leave entitlement to carers leave on presentation of medical certificate/s. Students taking sick leave must inform their supervisor as soon as practicable.

21. Holders of the Scholarship may receive additional paid sick leave of up to a total of twelve weeks during their scholarship for medically substantiated periods of illness where the student has insufficient sick leave entitlements available under Clause 20 above. Students applying for additional paid sick leave must do so at the start of absence or as soon as practicable. Periods of additional paid sick leave are added to the duration of the Scholarship.

22. Once holders of the Scholarship have completed twelve months of their award, they are entitled to a maximum of twelve weeks paid parental leave during the tenure of the Scholarship. Students applying for paid parental leave should do so at least four weeks prior leave commencement date. Periods of paid parental leave are added to the duration of the Scholarship. Holders of the Scholarship who have not completed twelve months of their award may access unpaid parental leave through the suspension provisions. When applying for parental leave, applicant should include at least one of the following documents:

a. letter from medical professional related to pregnancy,
b. a surrogacy agreement,
c. birth certificate of the child,
d. adoption documents, or
e. documentation that substantiates the application.

Research Overseas

 23. Holders of the Scholarship may not normally conduct research overseas within the first six months of an award.

24. Holders of the Scholarship may conduct up to 12 months (18 months for students of Anthropology and other special cases) of their research outside Australia. Approval must be sought from the student's supervisor, and Head of department/School, and will only be granted if the research is essential for completion of the degree. All periods of overseas research are cumulative and will be counted towards a student's candidature. Students must remain enrolled at the University and receive approval to Count Time Away.

Conversion between Research Masters and Research Doctorate degrees

25. Holders of the Scholarship may convert from a Research Masters degree to a Research Doctorate degree or vice-versa provided such change in candidature is approved by the Faculty/University School. The conversion from Research Doctorate to Research Masters may result in termination of the scholarship. Should the Scholarship holder be approved to retain the scholarship, the maximum duration of a converted RTP Stipend Scholarship becomes that for the new candidature.

Transfer

26. The Scholarships are not transferrable to another university. Should the holder of the scholarship transfer to another faculty, school or supervisor within the University of Sydney, the duration of the scholarship will not be extended.

Suspension

27. Holders of the Scholarship may not apply to suspend their award within the first six months unless.

a. permitted by a legislative provision; or
b. approved by the relevant Associate Dean (Research Education) on the basis of special circumstances^

28. After the first six months, holders of the Scholarship may apply for up to 12 months suspension for any reason during the tenure of their award. Periods of suspension are cumulative and failure to resume study after suspension will result in the award being terminated. Approval to suspend must be given by the relevant Associate Dean (Research Education). Periods of study towards the degree during suspension of the Scholarship will be deducted from the maximum tenure of the Scholarship.

29. A RTP Scholarship will be suspended during any period of suspension of studies.

30. Holders of the Scholarship are entitled up to an additional 12 months suspension (less any period of paid parental leave) following holders becoming a parent. The Scholarship holder should apply for suspension within four weeks of the expected date of becoming a parent. .

Changes in Enrolment

31. Holders of the Scholarship must notify the supervisor and Higher Degree by Research Administration (HDRAC) within 10 business days of any planned changes to their enrolment including but not limited to: attendance pattern, suspension, leave of absence, withdrawal, course transfer, and candidature upgrade or downgrade by written notice. If the award holder does not provide notice of the changes identified above, the University may require repayment of any overpaid stipend.

Industry placements, research internships and professional practice activities

32. Holders of the Scholarship may undertake industry placements, research internships, and professional practice activities of up to six months’ duration that are approved as part of their HDR course by:

a. their supervisor;
b. the relevant Associate Dean (Research Education).

Acknowledgement

33. The Australian Government’s contribution must be formally acknowledged when, at any time during or after completion of a relevant HDR course:

a. the recipient;
b. the recipient’s supervisor; or
c. any other party publishes or produces material (such as books, articles, newsletters or other literary or artistic works) relating to the recipient’s research project.

34. This requirement is met by including the following statement in any materials: “This research is supported by an Australian Government Research Training Program (RTP) Scholarship”.

Termination

35. The Scholarships (RTP Tuition Fee Offset and RTP Stipend) will be terminated on resignation or withdrawal of the student, upon failure to enrol in the course without approved leave or suspension, upon submission of the thesis or at the end of the award, whichever occurs first. The Scholarships will be terminated before this time if after due enquiry the University concludes that a student has not carried out the course of study with competence and diligence or in accordance with the offer of the Scholarship, or fails to maintain satisfactory progress, or has committed serious misconduct. Stipend payment will be suspended throughout the duration of the enquiry/appeal process.

False or Misleading Information

36. The University of Sydney reserves the right to reassess a student’s scholarship entitlements if it believes the student has provided false or misleading information to the university in relation to their application for admission or the scholarship award.

Appeal

26. The University recognises the right of any student to appeal to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education) against any decision affecting the award or tenure of the Scholarship.

Eligibility

1. Applicants must be an Australian citizen, a New Zealand citizen or an Australian permanent resident at the time of award.

2. University of Sydney Postgraduate Award (UPA) (‘the Scholarship’) holders are expected to enrol in a full-time postgraduate research degree. The relevant Associate Dean (Research Education) may approve a part-time UPA Scholarship* where the University is satisfied that there are special circumstances beyond the student’s control (for example medical conditions, financial hardship, carer’s responsibilities).

*A part-time scholarship may have tax implications and student should seek tax advice from registered tax agents.

3. Applicants must apply to be considered for RTP Scholarships at the time of their application for admission to their HDR Course and must submit the required supporting material in the manner specified on the Scholarships Office website. Applicants who have already commenced their HDR candidature must apply by completing the application form available on the Scholarships Office website.

Tenure

4. The Scholarship may be held for up to 3.5 years (full time) for Research Doctorate studies, or for up to two years for Research Masters studies if commenced prior 1 January 2019, or 1.75 years if commences on or after 1 January 2019. Periods of study already undertaken towards the degree prior to the commencement of the award will be deducted from the maximum tenure of the award.

5. No extensions are possible.

6. A student is expected to commence the Scholarship by the census date of their commencing intake, and during the year the Scholarship is awarded. If a student has commenced their studies, the scholarship may commence immediately.

7. A recipient may defer their UPA Scholarship for up to one research period with the approval of:

a. their supervisor; and
b. the relevant Associate Dean (Research Education).

8. UPA Stipends may be provided for the duration of an approved industry placement, research internship or professional practice activity (as stated in Clause 32 of this document) if:

a. the recipient already holds, and remains eligible for, a UPA Stipend;
b. no other income is received from these activities; and
c. the maximum duration of the UPA Stipend has not been reached.

Stipend and Allowances

9. Holders of the Scholarship will receive a stipend of $35,950 per annum (2022 rate), indexed annually on 1 January.

10. A student who relocates their place of residence to take up the Scholarship may claim an allowance for eligible expenses as published in the University’s Stipend Scholarship relocation allowance information. The value of the allowance is up to $515 for each eligible adult and $255 for each eligible child. The absolute maximum value of relocation expenses that a student may receive is $1,485.

11. Students who commenced their postgraduate research degree studies in Sydney prior to the scholarship being awarded are not entitled to claim relocation allowance for travel to Sydney.

12. Reimbursement of up to $420 for Masters candidates and up to $840 for Doctoral candidates will be made for eligible claims for direct costs of producing a thesis in accordance with the University’s thesis allowance claim information. The claim must be lodged with the Higher Degree by Research Administration Centre (HDRAC - hdrac.scholarships@sydney.edu.au) within one year of submission of the thesis and no more than two years after termination of the award. Costs associated with printing a thesis are not eligible as printed thesis is no longer required for submission and examination.

13. Holders of the Scholarship may receive a concurrent award, scholarship or salary to undertake their research degree provided such award, scholarship or salary provides a benefit less than 75% of the Scholarship. The Scholarship will be terminated if this limit is exceeded. Salary for work unrelated to the student’s research is not subject to this limit.

Tuition Fee

14. As an eligible Higher Degree by Research student, your tuition fees will be met by the Commonwealth Government’s Research Training Program for a period of up to 8 research periods for Research Masters and up to 16 research periods for Research Doctorate degrees.

15. RTP Fee Offset recipients are eligible to have their scholarship provided for the duration of an approved placement, research internship or professional practice activity. The total length of the RTP Fee Offset cannot extend beyond the maximum duration set out in Clause 14.

Selection Criteria

16. The successful applicant will be awarded the Scholarship on the basis of:

a. academic merit,
b. research experience,
c. availability of a high quality research environment and resources to support the candidature, and
d. availability of high qualitify supervisory arrangements to support the candidature

17. Preference may be given to applicants who:

a. identify as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person as per University of Sydney policy,
b. have not previously received an Australian Government or University Scholarship to complete an HDR course at the same level,
c. have not previously completed an HDR course at the same level of study.

18. The successful applicant will be awarded the Scholarship by the Higher Degrees by Research Scholarships Sub-Committee (HDRSSC) on the recommendation of the Faculty.

The University of Sydney will notify applicants of the outcome of their RTP Scholarship application by email to the student’s University email address (for current students), or the preferred email address contained in the student’s application for admission.

Leave Arrangements

19. Holders of the Scholarship receive up to 20 working days recreation leave every 12 months of the Scholarship and this may be accrued. Any unused leave when the Scholarship is terminated or completed will be forfeited. Recreation leave does not attract a leave loading. The supervisor's agreement must be obtained before leave is taken.

20. Holders of the Scholarship may take up to 10 working days sick leave every 12 months of the Scholarship and this may be accrued over the tenure of the Scholarship. Students with carer responsibility may convert up to five days of their annual sick leave entitlement to carers leave on presentation of medical certificate/s. Students taking sick leave must inform their supervisor as soon as practicable.

21. Holders of the Scholarship may receive additional paid sick leave of up to a total of twelve weeks during their scholarship for medically substantiated periods of illness where the student has insufficient sick leave entitlements available under Clause 20 above. Students applying for additional paid sick leave must do so at the start of absence or as soon as practicable. Periods of additional paid sick leave are added to the duration of the Scholarship.

22. Once holders of the Scholarship have completed twelve months of their award, they are entitled to a maximum of twelve weeks paid parental leave during the tenure of the Scholarship. Students applying for paid parental leave should do so at least four weeks prior leave commencement date. Periods of paid parental leave are added to the duration of the Scholarship. Holders of the Scholarship who have not completed twelve months of their award may access unpaid parental leave through the suspension provisions. When applying for parental leave, applicant should include at least one of the following documents:

a. letter from medical professional related to pregnancy,
b. a surrogacy agreement,
c. birth certificate of the child,
d. adoption documents, or
e. documentation that substantiates the application.

Research Overseas

23. Holders of the Scholarship may not normally conduct research overseas within the first six months of an award.

24. Holders of the Scholarship may conduct up to 12 months (18 months for students of Anthropology and other special cases) of their research outside Australia. Approval must be sought from the student's supervisor, and Head of department/School, and will only be granted if the research is essential for completion of the degree. All periods of overseas research are cumulative and will be counted towards a student's candidature. Students must remain enrolled at the University and receive approval to Count Tie Away.

Conversion between Research Masters and Research Doctorate degrees

25. Holders of the Scholarship may convert from a Research Masters degree to a Research Doctorate degree or vice-versa provided such change in candidature is approved by the Faculty/University School. The conversion from Research Doctorate to Research Masters may result in termination of the scholarship. Should the Scholarship holder be approved to retain the scholarship, the maximum duration of a converted UPA Scholarship becomes that for the new candidature.

Transfer

26. The Scholarships are not transferrable to another university. Should the holder of the scholarship transfer to another faculty, school or supervisor within the University of Sydney, the duration of the scholarship will not be extended.

Suspension

27. Holders of the Scholarship may not apply to suspend their award within the first six months unless:

a. permitted by a legislative provision; or
b. approved by the relevant Associate Dean (Research Education) on the basis of special circumstances^

^Special circumstances include carer responsibilities or medical conditions and will generally be out of the recipient’s control.

28. After the first six months, holders of the Scholarship may apply for up to 12 months suspension for any reason during the tenure of their award. Periods of suspension are cumulative and failure to resume study after suspension will result in the award being terminated. Approval to suspend must be given by the relevant Associate Dean (Research Education). Periods of study towards the degree during suspension of the Scholarship will be deducted from the maximum tenure of the Scholarship.

29. A UPA Scholarship will be suspended during any period of suspension of studies.

30. Holders of the Scholarship are entitled up to an additional 12 months suspension (less any period of paid parental leave) following holders becoming a parent. The Scholarship holder should apply for suspension within four weeks of the expected date of becoming a parent.

Changes in Enrolment

31. Holders of the Scholarship must notify the supervisor and Higher Degree by Research Administration (HDRAC) within 10 business days of any planned changes to their enrolment including but not limited to: attendance pattern, suspension, leave of absence, withdrawal, course transfer, and candidature upgrade or downgrade by written notice. If the award holder does not provide notice of the changes identified above, the University may require repayment of any overpaid stipend.

Industry placements, research internships and professional practice activities

32. Holders of the Scholarship may undertake industry placements, research internships, and professional practice activities of up to six months’ duration that are approved as part of their HDR course by:

a. their supervisor;
b. the relevant Associate Dean (Research Education).

Acknowledgement

33. The Australian Government’s contribution must be formally acknowledged when, at any time during or after completion of a relevant HDR course:

a. the recipient;
b. the recipient’s supervisor; or
c. any other party publishes or produces material (such as books, articles, newsletters or other literary or artistic works) relating to the recipient’s research project.

34. This requirement is met by including the following statement in any materials: “This research is supported by an Australian Government Research Training Program (RTP) Scholarship”.

Termination

35. The Scholarships (RTP Tuition Fee Offset and UPA Stipend) will be terminated on resignation or withdrawal of the student, upon failure to enrol in the course without approved leave or suspension, upon submission of the thesis or at the end of the award, whichever occurs first. The Scholarships will be terminated before this time if after due enquiry the University concludes that a student has not carried out the course of study with competence and diligence or in accordance with the offer of the Scholarship, or fails to maintain satisfactory progress, or has committed serious misconduct. Stipend payment will be suspended throughout the duration of the enquiry/appeal process.

False or Misleading Information

36. The University of Sydney reserves the right to reassess a student’s scholarship entitlements if it believes the student has provided false or misleading information to the university in relation to their application for admission or the scholarship award.

Appeal

26. The University recognises the right of any student to appeal to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education) against any decision affecting the award or tenure of the Scholarship.