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Research Degree Requirements


All Business School HDR candidates must complete formal research training/coursework as part of their degree requirements. The purpose of the coursework is to provide students with the research skills and methodological training required for their thesis work and beyond. The Business School Research Unit runs various units in-house exclusively for HDR candidates, with small classes, expert tuition, and a rich learning environment. All PhD and MPhil candidates must complete a minimum of 3 units of study. This study must include BUSS7901 Research Design (which must be taken in the first research period), BUSS7902 Quantitative and Qualitative Research Methods (which must be taken within 10 months of enrolment) and either BUSS7904 Advanced Quantitative Methods or BUSS7906 Advanced Qualitative Methods (which must be taken within 24 months of enrolment). In addition to these units, students are free to take any additional units deemed important for their research training. Other units or courses within the School, the university or other external institutions can be considered. There is no upper limit on these additional units but all formal coursework must be completed within 24 months of enrolment. Candidates are required to maintain a distinction average in their coursework.

Research Thesis Proposal Defence

All PhD candidates must formally defend their research thesis proposal. The goal is to ensure that the proposed research is worthwhile, meaningful, viable and feasible, and can be completed within the timeframe given the resource constraints of the program. The thesis proposal defence is coordinated by the Discipline and should be completed within the first 10 to 14 months from the commencement of candidature.

The Business School will only require Master of Philosophy candidates to formally defend their research thesis proposal they request an upgrade to the PhD.

Upgrade from MPhil to PhD

Upgrading to the PhD program from the MPhil is not automatic. A request to upgrade will be based on successful completion of:

  • The probationary period
  • Three units of study, including the core unit BUSS7901 Research Design
  • Thesis Proposal Defence
  • Annual Progress Reviews. Progress must be considered satisfactory.

Candidates require approval from their supervisor, Postgraduate Research Coordinator and the Director of Doctoral Studies. Please note there is no guarantee that an application to upgrade will be successful.

The time spent in the MPhil degree will be credited toward the PhD.

Candidature in the MPhil is governed by the policies and regulations in place at the date of initial enrolment. If, at a later date, a candidate chooses to upgrade to a PhD, the policies and regulations in place at the date of enrolment in the PhD will govern the remainder of the candidature.

An upgrade from the MPhil to the PhD will not be considered if the candidate has reached their earliest completion date (ie 1.5 years into the MPhil candidature, full-time equivalent).