Research is an exciting journey of discovery, where you'll be working at the ever-shifting boundary between the known and the unknown.  The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) is the University's flagship research degree, which can be taken in any discipline area in the University.


The PhD is a program of independent, supervised research that is assessed solely on the basis of a thesis, sometimes including a creative work component, that is examined externally. The work presented for a PhD must be a substantial and original contribution to scholarship, demonstrating mastery of the subject of interest as well as an advance in that field of knowledge.

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Course description, features and facilities

The PhD comprises an independent, supervised research project mutually agreed upon by a student, supervisor, head of school and the Board of the Graduate Research School. It may be undertaken in any school in the University. The PhD requires the development and implementation of a rigorous research plan, based on a comprehensive understanding of the relevant literature and the need for answers to questions posed in that literature or as the result of a new theory. The thesis demonstrates a student's ability to document and interpret results, formulate theories and discuss the results in light of the current literature to a high level of competence.

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Course Structure cannot be located. Please refer to the UWA handbook.

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Career opportunities

PhD graduates move into a wide range of careers, depending on their areas of research.  The traditional pathways are to research and academic careers, but many graduates progress into other professional areas, including management.  Because the PhD is a demonstration of a graduate's ability to conceptualise and implement an independent program of research, manage a project, organise resources, work with other people and communicate effectively in writing at a high level, it is a ticket to many destinations.

Related careers

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Further study opportunities

Higher doctorate

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These pages are under review and are being updated.

Check the Entrance requirements

This course is available to Australian and international students.

On this page

  1. Admission Requirements
  2. English competency

Admission Requirements

To be accepted an applicant must demonstrate that they have sufficient background and experience in independent supervised research to successfully complete a PhD. The normal requirement is for a bachelor's degree with at least upper second class honours in an appropriate discipline. However, applications are also considered from:

  1. Graduates of this University (or equivalent) who can demonstrate to the University that they have had adequate research preparation since graduation;
  2. Applicants who have previously undertaken work of a sufficiently high standard, towards a research higher degree in this or another approved institution, but have not submitted it for any degree and have had their research proposals approved; or
  3. Applicants who have satisfactorily completed an acceptable preliminary program at this University or an approved institution and have had a research proposal approved by the University.

English competency

See the full list of English language requirements.
These pages are under review and are being updated.

How to apply

This course is available to Australian and international students.

On this page

  1. Application Deadlines
  2. How to apply
  3. Fees

Application Deadlines

Applications can be made from January to November each year.

How to apply

There are several steps to lodging an application for a higher degree by research. Follow the below link for further information and relevant application forms: 


Refer to the Fee Calculator for up to date course and unit costs.

Note: We can help with application-related enquiries. If you need further course-specific information, you may wish to contact the relevant Faculty or School.

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Doctor of Philosophy: the details

Available 2016
Locations offered
Crawley, Albany
Attendance types
Part-time, Full-time
Delivery mode
External, Internal
Starting dates
By agreement with their supervisors, students may commence at any time throughout the year,  except December.
Weekly first year time commitment
Full-time students are expected to spend at least 30 hours per week on their research, throughout the year. Part-time students are expected to spend at least 15 hours a week on their research, throughout the year.
Standard full-time completion
4 years full-time
Maximum time to complete
Not applicable
Contact details: course information
Graduate Research School
M358 35 Stirling Highway Crawley, Perth Western Australia 6009
(+618) 6488 2807
Course code
024816F, 003320D, 003321C, 024818D, 003312D, 003314B, 037149G, 037147J, 037148G, 037146K, 003319G, 003318J, 003317K, 013797F, 003310F, 058936F, 003316M, 055301K, 037158F, 037160A, 037159E, 037157G, 003311E