Rick generally takes only one new graduate student each year, but sometimes takes two. He only accepts students who obtain full scholarships, because otherwise there is simply too much pressure on people to juggle the demands of employment with those of the research.
For international students, those scholarships may come from overseas (presumably, their home country) or from the International Postgraduate Research Scheme (IPRS) administered by the University of Sydney. Applications for the IPRS are due late in the year. The scholarships are based on undergraduate marks plus papers published etc., and are highly competitive. Experience suggests that it's not worth applying for an IPRS without a Masters degree or a full year's research component in the undergraduate degree. Publications give bonus points.
Australian and New Zealand students can apply for Australian Postgraduate Awards (APAs), but again competition is tough and you would need a First Class Honours degree to stand a chance. Contact Rick () if you are interested and think that you may be competitive. Please note however, that he takes only PhD candidates, not MSc candidates.
For graduate students who obtain full scholarships, Rick will offer significant funding for the project. He will also provide "top up" support of $5000 per annum. That "top up" goes direct to the student, and can be used in any way they desire. Under Australian government funding rules, the PhD has to be completed within 3.5 years. Graduate students have no obligation to take or teach courses - research is their sole responsibility - but teaching generally is available if you want to make extra money or gain relevant experience.
Feel free to contact any of the current students or post-docs in the lab to get a first-hand view of what life is really like in this research-intensive environment.