PhD Research

Subject PSYC80003 (2016)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2016.

Credit Points: 0
Level: Research Higher Degree
Dates & Locations: This is a time-based subject, taught on campus at Parkville.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: Commit to 40 hours of research
Total Time Commitment:

Regular meetings between the student and their research supervisor, as determined by mutual consent.

Full-time candidates must commit to an average 40 hours of research each week or 20 hours per week part time.


Enrolment in one of the following Psychology research programs: 551AA, 080CL, 080CN

Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support:


Associate Professor Stephen Bowden


Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences

12th floor Redmond Barry Building (Building 115 Map)

Telephone: + 61 3 8344 6377



Subject Overview:

Students will acquire the capacity to carry out independent research, and will demonstrate the ability to make an original contribution to knowledge in the discipline of psychology. The major difference between the Masters by Research and the PhD is that the former is more limited in scope.

Psychological Sciences hosts a number of well-equipped laboratories in which research is carried out by teams of staff members, often in collaboration with researchers from other University departments as well as affiliated institutions. Many of these laboratories have been successful in obtaining grants from the Australian Research Council (ARC), the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) and other external granting bodies. These laboratories are very keen to accept postgraduate students to participate in their research programs.

Learning Outcomes:

Candidates undertake a substantial piece of original research and complete a thesis which:

• demonstrates authority in the candidate’s field and shows evidence of a command of
knowledge in relevant fields;

• shows that the candidate has a thorough grasp of the appropriate methodological
techniques and an awareness of their limitations;

• makes a distinct contribution to knowledge which rests on originality of approach and/or
interpretation of the findings and, in some cases, the development of new facts;

• demonstrates an ability to communicate research findings effectively in the professional
arena and in an international context

Assessment: This subject is marked on a Pass/Fail only basis.

I. Probationary candidates are required to submit a written thesis proposal of between 3000 and 4500 words and to successfully defend it before a Thesis Advisory Committee for Confirmation. The thesis defence Must take place within 12 months of full-time enrolment (or equivalent part-time). The thesis defence may only occur within the first six months of enrolment under exceptional circumstances.

II. All full-time candidates must complete an Annual Progress Review and must meet with the Thesis Advisory Committee to discuss progress at least twice each year (equivalent part-time).

III. Full-time candidates must commit to 40 hours of research each week.

IV. All Psychological Sciences RHD candidates must present a progress report as a participant in the annual PhD Student Conference.

V. A thesis of no more than 100,000 words must be submitted for examination by two external examiners, one of whom will be overseas.

VI. All candidates must present their findings in a Completion Seminar within 6 months of submission.

Prescribed Texts: None
Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

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