How to Apply - Research Programs @ Sydney Law School

Before you Apply: The Postgraduate Research Experience in Law

There are two steps involved in making an application to a research program:

  1. Expression of interest
  2. Formal application for admission
    - Online application form
    - Supporting documentation
    - Transfer of research candidature
    - Research application closing dates/outcomes
    - Application assessment process
    - Scholarships

1. Expression of interest

Prior to making a formal application, you are required to provide information on the following form about your area of intended research, academic qualifications, professional or other qualifications, details about your original research activities and publications, and any other information relevant to the application.

Expressions of Interest are generally due:

Domestic applicants at least 3 months prior to formal application closing date
International applications at least 6 months prior to formal application closing date

Late Expressions of Interest may be considered on a case-by-case basis.

The Associate Dean (Research) will consider the Expression of Interest on the basis of your eligibility to enter the postgraduate research program as well as research supervision capacity within the relevant research area.

The Expression of Interest should be submitted at least 3 months for domestic applicants and at least 6 months for international applicants prior to the formal application closing date. This will allow the minimum time to assess the Expression of Interest and to make a formal application. Late Expressions of Interest may not be considered in time to make a formal application.

For further enquiries, please contact Law Postgraduate Team

2. Formal application for admission

A formal application should only be submitted after your Expression of Interest has been accepted.

Commencement date

Applicants may only apply to commence their candidature on the official start date of:

  • Research Period 2 (1 March*)
  • Research Period 3 (1 July)

* Students must be enrolled at least three weeks before the start of LAWS6077 Legal Research 1

See important dates

Online application forms

Please ensure all application Supporting documentation are available for uploading before commencing the online application process.

Application form and information

Once you have been advised to proceed with a formal application, you should complete the relevant application form and provide supporting documentation listed below.

Application assistance

If you require general assistance with making an online application, please contact Future Students

For information on specific postgraduate law research application requirements, please contact the Postgraduate Team, Sydney Law School

Transfer of research candidature

In addition to formal documentation required for application (as above), applicants who have already commenced a research degree and are seeking to transfer to another research degree, are required to provide the following additional information:

  • Reasons for applying to transfer
  • Statement (no more than 1,000 words) indicating the progress of your thesis to date. This should include an outline of the thesis plus a brief summary of each chapter, including information about what stage draft the material has reached.
  • Supervisor’s report detailing the rate and standard of your thesis progress made to date.
  • Evidence of ethics approval for all relevant previous research undertaken.
  • Non-University of Sydney applicants: provision of an official enrolment notice issued by the home institution confirming the number of full-time equivalent semesters of enrolment consumed under the government’s Research Training Scheme.

For further information, please refer to University policies relating to research candidatures.

Research application closing dates (including course transfers) and outcomes


Application must be received by:

Application outcome available by approx
Research Period 2 (1 March*)
30 September
Late November
Research Period 3 (1 July)
30 April
Late June

*Students must be enrolled at least three weeks before the start of LAWS6077 Legal Research 1

Application assessment process

The formal admission application will be assessed by academic members in the relevant Research Cluster and the Postgraduate Research Committee. Applications will be assessed on the basis of a range of criteria, including the academic credentials, research/publication and relevant professional experience of the applicant, the strength of the research proposal, and research supervision capacity in the relevant legal area.

Please note that entry into the postgraduate research program is highly competitive. Due to the volume of applications and limited supervisory capacity in certain fields, applicants must comply with the prescribed closing date in order to have their application assessed by the Postgraduate Research Committee.

Late applications may be considered on a case-by-case basis.


International applicants

International applicants who wish to be considered for a scholarship must submit their formal application for admission to International Services by:

31 July of the previous year for commencement in Semester 1 (March)
15 December of the previous year for commencement in Semester 2 (July)

Domestic applicants

Please submit your research admission application well in advance of the application closing date. Please visit scholarships and financial support.

Scholarship eligibility criteria

Scholarships are extremely competitive. Eligible applicants must have:

  • Honours 1 or equivalent degree
  • strong track record of research achievements i.e. scholarly work (written in English). The work must be recently published by a University recognized reputable publisher; and/or
  • significant relevant professional experience

Applicants must satisfy the Faculty’s English language requirements at the time of receiving an offer of admission, if their academic qualifications were not taught/assessed in English.