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Postgraduate research degrees

Apply your theory-driven research to the real world
Work alongside some of the world's brightest and most accomplished academics, access high-calibre facilities, and discover our new curriculum.

We're unlearning the world's greatest challenges

Our research is driven by the big picture. Ranked second globally in the Times Higher Education Impact Rankings and in the top 45 of research universities around the world*, the University of Sydney is home to leading researchers who are finding solutions to the world's most pressing issues by changing the way they look at them. 

We are home to 90 world‑renowned multidisciplinary research and teaching centres that tackle some of the world’s biggest challenges, such as health, climate change and food security. These centres include the Charles Perkins Centre, the Brain and Mind Centre and The University of Sydney Nano Institute

Our interdisciplinary approach means that students are part of a community of scholars that unites experts in fields as diverse as medicine, arts, social sciences, engineering, information technologies and science. 

As a researcher at Sydney, you'll work alongside some of the world's brightest and most accomplished academics. You can access high-calibre facilities and unique international partnerships with top-ranked institutions, including Stanford, UCLA, the University of Edinburgh, Utrecht University, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, and the University of Hong Kong.

Types of research degrees

A master's degree by research at Sydney:

  • is the second-highest qualification on the Australian Qualifications Framework
  • can be a gateway to study at a PhD level
  • is usually one to two years full-time or two to four years part-time (part-time is available to domestic students only)
  • is awarded based on a supervised thesis, which makes a substantial contribution to knowledge of the subject concerned.

A PhD at Sydney:

  • is our premier research award and the highest qualification on the Australian Qualifications Framework
  • comprises of independent research and writing on an approved topic toward a thesis for examination
  • may be undertaken in all faculties and divisions, or across disciplines
  • is usually three years full time or six years of part-time study (part-time is available to domestic students only).

A professional doctorate at Sydney:

  • allows candidates to pursue rigorous scholarship alongside advancing their practice in many fields
  • is usually three to four years full-time or six to eight years of part-time study (part-time is available to domestic students only).

New coursework curriculum 

To support the research capabilities and success of HDR students, and in response to a changing world, we are introducing a new coursework component to our PhD degrees and broadening the coursework options for our other postgraduate research degrees.

You will have the opportunity to create a distinct research pathway by selecting from 270+ units from any faculty – a first of its kind in Australia – with study areas ranging from specialist analytical methods and professional engagement courses, to discipline-specific subjects.

This flexibility allows you to:

  • Choose a unique combination of units that will best equip you to succeed in your research.
  • Build your network and enhance your multidisciplinary knowledge while working with students and researchers from a broad range of backgrounds.
  • Graduate with a robust set of skills sought-after by employers, for a career in academia or industry. 

How will this affect my postgraduate research degree?

You will be able to enrol in any of the units available at no extra cost, subject to unit capacity and your research background, as some units vary in levels of capability. 

Your faculty may elect to define certain units of study as mandatory for a given degree pathway. 

Coursework units are available in the following areas:

  • BUSS7904 - Advanced quantitative methods
  • AMME5060 - Advanced computational engineering 
  • DATA5710 - Applied statistics for complex data 
  • OLET5602 - Computational analysis for omics data 
  • STAT5003 - Computational Statistics Methods
  • STAT5610 - Advanced inference 
  • STAT5611 - Statstical Methodology 
  • ENGL5000 - Research infrastructures for English
  • ENGL5001 - Presentation and impact in English studies
  • OLET5401 - Presenting your research
  • PERF5610 - Arts and creative industries placement
  • SCIE5001 - Science HDR Internship Experience
  • SCIE5002 - Managing your science career
  • SCIE5004 - Learning in STEMM in Higher Education 
  • SCLG6902 - The ethics of social research
  • PHIL6108 - Research topics in ethics
  • OLET5403 - Fieldwork ethics
  • BETH5202 - Human and animal research ethics
  • MEDF5005 - Introduction to research methods
  • OLET5618 - History of research ethics
  • ASNS6010 - Asian language acquisition 1
  • ASNS6011 - Asian language acquisition 2
  • ASNS6013 - Asian language acquisition 3
  • ASNS6014 - Asian language acquisition 4
  • GCST5002 - Representing cultural research proposal 
  • EUST7010 - European language acquisition 1
  • EUST7011 - European language acquisition 2
  • EUST7012 - European language acquisition 3
  • EUST7013 - European language acquisition 4
  • GRKA7001 - Classical Greek for postgraduates 1
  • GRKA7002 - Classical Greek for postgraduates 2
  • LATN7201 - Latin for Postgraduates 1
  • LATN7202 - Latin for Postgraduates 2
  • ENGG5205 - Professional practice in project management
  • PMGT5875 - Project innovation management 
  • PMGT5876 - Strategic delivery of change
  • PMGT5879 - Strategic portfolio and program management
  • PMGT5896 - Sustainability and intelligence in PM 
  • PMGT5898 - Complex project leadership
  • PMGT6871 - Project planning and governance 
  • PMGT6872 - Project leadership and communications
  • PMGT6873 - Project economics and investment 
  • PMGT6891 - Risk dynamics and resilience
  • ECMT5001 - Principles of econometrics
  • ECON5005 - Quantitative tools for economics
  • ECON6703 - Mathematical methods of econ analysis 
  • EDPK5002 - Quantitative methods
  • OLET5120 - Understanding and using ABS data
  • SSPS6001 - Quantitative methods
  • BUSS7902 - Quantitative research methods
  • CIVL5458 - Numerical methods in civil engineering
  • BACH5068 - Statistics for clinical research
  • OLET5402 - Fundamentals of quantitative research design
  • BSTA5002 - Principles of statistical inference
  • BSTA5007 - Linear models
  • BSTA5023 - Probability and distribution theory
  • PUBH5018 - Introductory biostastics
  • PUBH5215 - Introductory analysis of linked data
  • PUBH5217 - Regression modelling
  • MATH5311 - Topics in algebra
  • MATH5430 - Mathematical models of natural phenomena 
  • MATH5431 - Mathematical models of natural phenomena (Alt)
  • OLET5606 - Data wrangling
  • OLET5608 - Linear modelling
  • OLET5610 - Multivariate data analysis
  • OLET5616 - Experimental design for life sciences
  • STAT5002 - Introduction to statistics
  • EDPK5001 - Qualitative methods
  • GCST5001 - Beginning qualitative cultural research proposal
  • SSPS6002 - Qualitative methods
  • BUSS7903 - Qualitative research methods
  • BUSS7906 - Advanced qualitative methods
  • BACH5255 - Qualitative research methods
  • OLET5902 - Qualitative research for law and policy 
  • PUBH5505 - Qualitative research in health 
  • ARCF9001 - Modes of inquiry: research and scholarship
  • EDPJ5022 - Research methods in language studies
  • EDPK5003 - Developing a research project
  • EDPZ5003 - Thesis proposal writing
  • GCST5002 - Representing cultural research proposal
  • ECOP6301 - Research in political economy 
  • GOVT6139 - Research design
  • SCWK6902 - Social research
  • BUSS7901 - Research design
  • BUSS7909 - Philosophy of research 
  • MCGY5604 - Researching creative process
  • PERF5600 - Graduate research methods
  • INFO5993 - IT Research methods
  • OLET5405 - Standards for data reporting 
  • CEPI5205 - Doing a systematic review
  • CEPI5215 - Writing and reviewing medical papers
  • DENT6000 - Research methods
  • MEDF5005 - Health research methods and ethics
  • PHAR6000 - Research methods
  • AFNR5901 - Research review
  • AFNR5904 - Research proposal and approach
  • AFNR5905 - Research paper
  • AFNR5906 - Research communication
  • CEPI5300 - Research grants: theory and practice
  • ECON5001 - Principles of Econometrics
  • ECON5002 - Macroeconomic Theory
  • EDPC5012 - Evaluating Learning
  • EDPC5021 - Foundations of the Learning Sciences
  • EDPC5025 - Learning Technology Research Frontiers
  • GCST5910 - Health, Pleasure and Consumption 
  • OLET5120 - Understanding and Using ABS Data
  • PRFM5901 - Critical and Theory Performance
  • PRFM5902 - Rehearsal Studies
  • ECMT6702 - Econometric Applications A
  • ECON6701 - Microeconomics Analysis 1 A
  • ECON6702 - Macroeconomics Analysis 1 A
  • ECON6703 - Mathematical Methods of Economic Analysis A
  • GCST6905 - Gender in Cultural Theory 
  • PHIL6102 - Research Topics in Ancient Philosophy
  • PHIL6103 - Research Topics: Early Modern Philosophy
  • PHIL6104 - Research Topics in German Philosophy
  • PHIL6106 - Research Topics in Moral Psychology
  • PHIL6107 - Social and Political Philosophy
  • PHIL6109 - Research Topics: Mind and Metaphysics
  • PHIL6110 - Advanced Topics in Philosophy of Science
  • PHIL6111 - Formal Philosophy
  • PHIL6112 - Epistemology and Language
  • WMST6902 - Arguing the Point
  • WMST6904 - Modernism, Modernity and Modern Culture 
  • CART7005 - Arts as Research
  • BUSS7908 - Research Readings Seminar
  • AERO5301 - Applied Finite Element Analysis 
  • AERO5760 - Spacecraft and Satellite Design 
  • AERO8200 - Advanced Aerodynamics 
  • AERO8750 - Unmanned Air Vehicle Systems 
  • AMME5202 - Computational Fluid Dynamics
  • AMME5271 - Computational Nanotechnology
  • AMME5292 - Advanced Fluid Dynamics
  • AMME5310 - Engineering Tribology 
  • AMME8101 - Energy and the Environment
  • AMME8510 - Vibration and Acoustics
  • AMME8520 - Advanced Control and Optimisation 
  • MECH8720 - Sensors and Signals 
  • MTRX8700 - Experimental Robotics
  • BMET5907 - Orthopaedic and Surgical Engineering
  • BMET5921 - Biomedical Engineering Technology 2
  • BMET5931 - Nanomaterials in Medicine
  • BMET5962 - Introduction to Mechanobiology
  • BMET5992 - Regulatory Affairs in the Medical Industry
  • BMET5995 - Advanced Bionics
  • CHNG5001 - Process Systems Engineering
  • CHNG5003 - Green Engineering
  • CHNG5004 - Particles and Surfaces
  • CHNG5005 - Wastewater Engineering
  • CHNG5006 - Advanced Wastewater Engineering
  • CHNG5008 - Nanotechnology in Chemical Engineering
  • CHNG5601 - Membrance Science
  • CHNG5602 - Cellular Biophysics
  • CHNG5603 - Advanced Process Modelling and Simulation
  • CHNG5604 - Advanced Membrane Engineering
  • CHNG5605 - Bio-Products Laboratory to Marketplace
  • CHNG5606 - Advanced Food Processing 
  • ENG5202 - Sustainable Design, Engineering and Management 
  • ENG5204 - Engineering Professional Practice
  • ENGG5214 - Management of Technology 
  • CIVL5351 - Geoenvironmental Engineering
  • CIVL5460 - Particle Mechanics for Geotechnics
  • CIVL5999 - Advanced Research and Analysis
  • CIVL5701 - Transport Networks, Geography and Land Use
  • CIVL6257 - Concrete Structures - Prestressed Concrete
  • CIVL6264 - Compositive Steel - Concrete Structures
  • CIVL6267 - Steel Structures - Advanced Analysis and Design
  • CIVL6268 - Structural Dynamics
  • CIVL6450 - Analysis and Design of Pile Foundations
  • CIVL6454 - Rock Engineering
  • CIVL6455 - Engineering Behaviour of Soils 
  • CIVL6456 - Energy Geotechnics
  • CIVL6665 - Advanced Water Resources Engineering
  • CIVL6666 - Open Channel Flower and Hydraulic Structures
  • CIVL6669 - Applied Fluid Engineering Computing
  • CSYS5020 - Interdependent Civil Systems 
  • CSYS5030 - Information Theory and Self - Organisation 
  • CSYS5040 - Criticality in Dynamical Systems
  • COMP5045 - Computational Geometry 
  • COMP5046 - Natural Language Processing
  • COMP5048 - Visual Analytics 
  • COMP5318 - Machine Learning and Data Mining
  • COMP5415 - Multimedia Design and Authoring
  • COMP5424 - Information Technology in Biomedicine
  • COMP5427 - Usability Engineering
  • DATA5207 - Data Analysis in the Social Sciences
  • INFO5060 - Data Analytics and Business Intelligence
  • ISYS5070 - Change Management in IT
  • ELEC5203 - Topics in Power Engineering
  • ELEC5204 - Power Systems Analysis and Protection 
  • ELEC5207 - Advanced Power Conversion Technologies
  • ELEC5304 - Multidimensional Signal Processing
  • ELEC5306 - Video Intelligence and Compression 
  • ELEC5307 - Advanced Signal Processing with Deep Learning
  • ELEC5517 - Software Defined Networks
  • ELEC5614 - Real Time Computing
  • ELEC5615 - Advanced Computer Architecture
  • ELEC8608 - Computer Architecture
  • ELEC8803 - Bioelectronics
  • ELEC9607 - Embedded Systems
  • LAWS6077 - Legal Research 1
  • LAWS7001 - Legal Research 2
  • LAWS7002 - Legal Research 3
  • OLET5404 - Implementation science
  • CEPI5100 - Introduction to Clinical Epidemiology
  • OLET5502 - Pharma Insights: A Global Perspective
  • PUBH5010 - Epidemiology Methods and Uses
  • PUBH5216 - Controlled Clinical Trials
  • PUBH5224 - Advanced Epidemiology 
  • PUBH5312 - Health Economic Evaluation 
  • PUBH5317 - Decision Modelling for Economic Evaluation 
  • CMPN5006 - Recording Portfolio
  • CMPN5012 - Graduate Composer Performer Workshop
  • CMPN5114 - Graduate Vocal Composition Workshop
  • EMU5600 - Historical Performance Practice
  • MCGY5111 - Creative Work Seminar 1 
  • MCGY5112 - Creative Work Seminar 2
  • MCGY5600 - Critical Discourses in Music
  • MCGY5601 - Music Through Ethnography
  • MCGY5602 - Opera and Society
  • MCGY5603 - Music as Social Science
  • MCGY5605 - Methods of Music Analysis
  • VSAO5022 - Principles of Studio Pedagogy 
  • AFNR5801 - Climate change: Process, History, Issues
  • CHEM5XX1 - Special Topics in Chemistry 1
  • CHEM5XX2 - Special Topics in Chemistry 2
  • ENVI5801 - Social Science of Environment
  • GEOG5001 - Geographic Science A
  • MARS5001 - Coastal Processes and Systems
  • MATH5310 - Topics in Algebra
  • MATH5320 - Topics in Analysis
  • MATH5321 - Topics in Analysis
  • MATH5330 - Topics in Geometry
  • MATH5331 - Topics in Geometry
  • MATH5340 - Topics in Topology
  • MATH5341 - Topics in Topology
  • MATH5410 - Special Topics in Applied Mathematics
  • MATH5411 - Special Topics in Applied Mathematics
  • MATH5420 - Deterministic and Stochastic Systems
  • MATH5421 - Deterministic and Stochastic Systems
  • DATA5441 - Networks and High-dimensional Inference
  • MATH5550 - Optimal Control and Game Theory
  • MATH5551 - Stochastics and Finance
  • OLET5604 - Health Literacy for Better Lives
  • PHYS5011 - Nuclear Physics
  • PHYS5020 - Computation and Image Processing
  • PHYS5121 - Advanced Electrodynamics and Photonics 
  • PHYS5122 - Astrophysics and Space Science
  • PHYS5123 - General Relativity and Cosmology
  • PHYS5124 - Physics of the Standard Model
  • PHYS5125 - Quantum Field Theory
  • PHYS5126 - Quantum Nanoscience

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  • Student Centre, Level 3
    Jane Foss Russell Building, Darlington Campus

    Opening hours:
    9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday

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