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PhD at a Glance


Applications for postgraduate research are accepted all year round. Once you are accepted and commence your candidature at the University of Sydney there are mandatory requirements and expected milestones. For information on finding a supervisor go to see also: Choosing a Topic and Supervisor.


Below is a timeline of research requirements and milestones from commencement to submission of your PhD.

– See also: Supervision Rights and Responsibilities

– Create your individual research progress plan:

– Complete Mandatory University Milestones:

  • Work Health & Safety Induction (within 2 months from commencement)
  • Responsible Research Practice (within 6 months from commencement)
  • Consent Matters (within 6 months from commencement)
  • Ethics online training: Human – General (within 6 months from commencement): Architecture, Design and Planning, Business, Education, Law and Health Science
  • Ethics online training: Human Ethics – Health and Medical (Within 6 months from commencement): Health Sciences. Optional Dentistry, Nursing, Pharmacy, Medicine
  • Ethics online training: Animal Ethics (within 6 months from commencement): all students conducting research which involves animal ethics approval
  • Chemical safety training (within 6 months from commencement): as directed by supervisors
  • Laser Safety awareness (within 6 months from commencement): as directed by supervisors
  • Radiation safety within 6 months from commencement): as directed by supervisors

– First year integrity check – required to submit your work for review by your supervisor (see Research Code of Conduct 2013)

– Progress Review (PR) – typical milestones for your first PR are: finalise your research proposal, finalise your research data management plan and have adequate written English skills to write your thesis (12 months from commencement and annually until submission)

– Apply for required ethics approval

- Writing your thesis outline, researching and/or reading (see also: Supervision: Your Rights and Responsibilities)

– Planning structure of chapters

– Drafting and redrafting chapters

– Thesis title and thesis abstract (6 months prior to submission)

– Authorship attribution (6 months prior to submission). See also: Intellectual Property

– Notice of Intent to Submit (3 months prior to your latest date for submission)

– Prepare your thesis using the correct style and format

– Write your abstract, key words, table of contents and figures, acknowledgements, reference list, appendices

– Get your supervisor’s final approval

– Editing and proofreading

– Submitting an electronic copy of your thesis to HDRAC:

– Examination

- Results See also: Submit Your Thesis

It’s important to remember that higher degree research requirements may change. Your supervisor should keep you informed on any important changes. If you are uncertain make sure you contact the Higher Degree Research Administration Centre (HDRAC) or SUPRA. If you have experienced unexpected delays during your studies ensure you follow the proper procedures for requesting an extension of your candidature.

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*MARNs 1911813, 1912229