Application process: Expression of Interest
The application process at Deakin differs depending on which Faculty or Institute you wish to study in.
Applicants applying in the following areas must submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) before commencing the application process. The Faculty or Institute will then advise if you should submit a formal application via the Applicant Portal.
- Faculty of Arts and Education - EOI form (DOCX, 67.1KB)
- Faculty of Business and Law - Application process information
- Faculty of Science, Engineering and Built Environment - EOI form (DOCX, 80.9KB)
Applicants applying in the following areas, and those who have been invited to submit a formal application should follow the ‘How to apply for a research degree’ steps below.
- Faculty of Health
- Institute for Intelligent System Research and Innovation
- Applied Artificial Intelligence Institute (A2I2)
- The Institute of Frontier Materials
With travel restrictions preventing offshore international students commencing in Australia, the HDR admissions team will not be considering applications from offshore international students (unless applying through an international research partnership program). This will be reviewed regularly from late 2020 and applications will open when travel restrictions ease.
Deakin University greatly values the contributions of our international students to our research community. We encourage you to keep in contact with your proposed supervisor until applications open again.
How to apply
To apply for a Higher Degree by Research, follow the seven steps outlined below. If you are a Psychology applicant*, please follow the relevant links below.
* Doctor of Philosophy (Psychology) applicants should follow the seven steps outlined below to apply for candidature and/or scholarship.
Applying in seven steps
Follow these seven steps to successfully complete your application:
Check the entry pathways
Entry to a research degree at Deakin is based on your demonstrated capacity to undertake significant research in a proposed field.
Your ability can be demonstrated in a variety of ways. In addition to the entry pathway requirements, there are additional eligibility criteria for entry into a scholarship.
Find a supervisor
Before you start your application, please contact a supervisor for advice on your research topic and proposal. A list of potential research areas and supervisors can be found via our Find a supervisor page.
This step is applicable to all applicants except those applying to study in the Faculty of Business and Law. For all supervisor and research degree related enquiries, prospective Business and Law Faculty students should email the faculty directly.
Arrange referee report
Your application needs to be supported by one referee report from a current/former lecturer, academic or employment supervisor who is able to comment on your research expertise and potential.
Forward the referee report form below directly to your referee to complete.
The report is confidential, and the referee must email the report directly to Deakin University.
This report is to provide information on the applicant’s eligibility and readiness for a research degree at Deakin University. In the case of scholarship applicants, this information will assist in their ranking.
Prepare your proposal
Provide a brief outline of your proposed research topic. This will be used to assess whether the university has appropriate supervision expertise available. If you've already been in contact with a potential supervisor, you may work with them to develop your research proposal.
Evidence of English proficiency
English language requirements, if required
If your first language isn't English, or if your degree qualifications weren't undertaken in English, please provide evidence of English proficiency.
The English language requirements for Deakin's higher degrees by research courses are benchmarked against the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) standards, which can be found in the tables below.
Tests cannot be more than two years old.
|BAND A||6/6||Overall 6.0, no band less than 6.0|
|BAND B||6.5/6||Overall 6.5, no band less than 6.0|
|BAND C||7/6.5||Overall 7.0, no band less than 6.5|
|BAND D||7/7||Overall 7.0, no band less than 7.0|
|BAND E||7/7/7.5||Overall 7.0, no band less than 7.0, speaking and listening 7.5|
Higher degree by research applicants must demonstrate that they meet the English language requirements to the level required by the faculty or institute in at least one of the ways specified above in the following table:
English language requirements - Previous studies in English
|2 Entire secondary and post-secondary studies and residency in Australia, or other specified English-speaking country* since graduation||Study at an institution within Australia or other specified English-speaking country*, completed no more than 2 years prior to enrolment at Deakin|
|Faculty of Arts and Education + Institute of Koorie Education||Accepted||2 academic years of full-time study at tertiary level|
|Faculty of Business and Law||Accepted||2 academic years of full-time study at tertiary level|
|Faculty of Health||Accepted||2 academic years of full-time study at tertiary level|
|Faculty of Science,Engineering and Built Environment||Accepted||1 academic year of full-time study at tertiary level|
|Institute for Frontier Materials||Accepted||1 academic year of full-time study at tertiary level|
*Other specified English-speaking country includes Australia, Canada, Fiji, Ireland, Kenya, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Singapore, Solomon Islands, South Africa, United Kingdom (including Northern Ireland), United States of America, Zambia.
English language requirements - English language tests
|Faculty of Arts and Education + Institute of Koorie Education||Faculty of Business and Law||Faculty of Health||Faculty of Science,Engineering and Built Environment|
|IELTS: International English Language Testing System||Band C: overall 7.0, no band less than 6.5||Band C: overall 7.0, no band less than 6.5||Band C: overall 7.0, no band less than 6.5||Band B: overall 6.5, no band less than 6.0|
|TOEFL (IBT): Test of English as a Foreign Language (internet based test)||94 Writing 24||94 Writing 24||94 Writing 24||79 Writing 21|
|TOEFL (IBT): Test of English as a Foreign Language (paper based test)||600 Writing 5||600 Writing 5||600 Writing 5||577 Writing 4.5|
|CPE: Cambridge English: Proficiency||Overall score of 185, no band less than 176||Overall score of 185, no band less than 176||Overall score of 185, no band less than 176||Overall score of 176, no band less than 169|
|CAE: Cambridge English: Advanced||Overall score of 185, no band less than 176||Overall score of 185, no band less than 176||Overall score of 185, no band less than 176||Overall score of 176, no band less than 169|
|PTE: Pearson’s Test of English (Academic)||65: No less than 58 in each skills||65: No less than 58 in each skills||65: No less than 58 in each skills||58: No less than 50 in each skills|
|DUELI EAP program (completed 1 year prior to enrolment)||EAP 4 – 65%||EAP 4 – 65%||EAP 4 – 65%||EAP 4 – 60%|
|DUELI Test (completed 6 months prior to enrolment)||Score of 7.0||Score of 7.0||Score of 7.0||Score of 6.5|
Work experience in English accepted by The Institute for Frontier Materials (IFM)
Substantial written work in an English speaking professional environment for a period of at least 3 years immediately prior to enrolment. Documentary evidence must be provided by senior management of the employing organisation to the satisfaction of the Academic Board
The Faculty of Health and Science, Engineering and Built Environment and the Institute for Frontier Materials (IFM) may allow you to provide proof of your English proficiency after they've approved your application.
The required standard may be achieved by taking a course at Deakin University English Language Institute (DUELI).
Prepare relevant documents/information
Resume or Curriculum vitae
Prepare and submit your curriculum vitae or résumé as part of your online application in section 1.
Please provide transcripts of all tertiary education studies taken outside Deakin.
Transcripts should indicate the name of the qualification, the institution, the years of study, the subjects/units undertaken, the grades achieved, explanatory notes concerning the grades and proof that the qualification was completed. If transcripts are in a foreign language, an English translation is to be supplied.
For international applicants this information must be certified. Please see how to certify documents section or please provide My eQuals link.
For domestic applicants certified documents are not required. However, verification or certified documentation may be required on request.
Previous research degree
If you've previously been enrolled in a research degree at another institution, or are applying to transfer your research degree from elsewhere, proof of your commencement date and evidence of any intermissions or changes of candidature (e.g. from full time to part time) are to be provided.
Publications information to include
If you've had your research published, outline your contribution to the work, state whether the journal or conference was national or international, submit a copy of the contents page and abstract page for each item but don’t attach the full article.
Provide a list of publications with a breakdown as follows:
- refereed journal articles
- refereed conference papers
- non-refereed conference papers
- books based on original research
- book chapters based on original research
- professional research reports
Bibliographic information to include
For each published work provide full bibliographic references, for example:
- Name / names - Smith. J., Brown. S., Shaw. P.
- Name of publication
- Type of publication, (e.g. refereed journal article, non-refereed journal article, book chapter, review etc.)
- Publication details (e.g. Volume 29, issue 2, 2005)
Providing proof of identification and citizenship
You will need to submit evidence of your citizenship and personal details as documents listed below (name, date of birth, etc.).
For international applicants this information must be certified. Please see how to certify documents section.
For domestic applicants certified documents are not required. However, verification or certified documentation may be required on request.
- a copy of your birth certificate, relevant pages of your passport or a citizenship certificate if you're an Australian or New Zealand citizen
- a copy of the relevant pages of your passport showing your visa or a letter with your residency status from the Department of Home Affairs if you're an Australian permanent resident
- a copy of relevant pages of your passport showing your identity and citizenship if you're an international passport holder
- proof of any changes of name (e.g. marriage certificate) if applicable
How do I certify my documents?
- Photocopy a copy of your original document.
- Photocopies must be legible; this applies to all aspects of the document, including the name and address of the awarding institution.
- If the document is in a language other than English, a certified copy of the original must be provided together with a certified translation.
- Take both the photocopy and original to one of the people listed below to have them certified.
- The authorised person must write and sign each page of the copied document.
- The authorised person should sign each statement and provide their designation, i.e. Pharmacist.
- Please note you or a family member cannot certify your documents even if they are listed as being able to do so for others on the list.
Many authorised persons have a stamp they use to mark the paper before they sign and date the declaration. If an authorised person does not have a stamp, they may use wording such as the example below:
Certified true copy. Original sighted by me on ......../......../20......
Signatory's authority: .............................................................
Who can certify my documents?
In Australia, the following people are acceptable as signatories for certification of documents:
- a justice of the peace or bail justice
- a public notary
- an Australian lawyer (within the meaning of the Legal Profession Act 2004)
- a clerk to an Australian lawyer
- the prothonotary or deputy prothonotary of the Supreme Court, the registrar or the deputy registrar of the County Court, the principal registrar of the Magistrates' Court or the registrar or the deputy registrar of the Magistrates' Court
- the registrar of probates and the assistant registrar of probates
the associate to a judge of the Supreme Court or of the County Court
- the associate of an Associate Judge of the Supreme Court or of an associate judge of the County Court
- a person registered as a patent attorney under Chapter 20 of the Patents Act 1990 of the Commonwealth
- a member of the police force
- the sheriff or deputy sheriff
- a member or a former member of either House of the Parliament of Victoria
- a member or a former member of either House of the Parliament of the Commonwealth
- a councillor of a municipality
a senior officer of a council as defined in the Local Government Act 1989
- a person registered under the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law to practise in the medical profession (other than as a student)
- a person registered under the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law to practise in the dental profession as a dentist (other than as a student) and in the dentists division of that profession
- a veterinary practitioner
- a person registered under the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law to practise in the pharmacy profession (other than as a student)
- a principal in the teaching service
- the manager of an authorised deposit-taking institution
- a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia or the Australian Society of Accountants or the Institute of Public Accountants
- the secretary of a building society
- a minister of religion authorised to celebrate marriages (not a civil celebrant)
- a person employed under Part 3 of the Public Administration Act 2004 with a classification that is prescribed as a classification to which this section applies or who holds office in a statutory authority with such a classification
- a fellow of the Institute of Legal Executives (Victoria)
- a staff member at Deakin.
Outside Australia, the following people are authorised to certify documents:
- a justice of the peace
- notary public
- Australian Consular Officer or Australian Diplomatic Officer (within the meaning of the Consular Fees Act 1955)
- employee of the Commonwealth or the Australian Trade Commission who works outside of Australia
- a recruitment agent for international students.
Answer all questions thoroughly in your online application and attach all requested documents. If information is missing it may affect your chances of being accepted.
What happens next?
What happens after I submit my HDR application?
You will receive a system generated confirmation email once you have submitted your application. If you have not provided all of the necessary documents, the Higher Degree by Research team will advise you via email. We ask that you submit the outstanding supporting documents as soon as possible. Failure to do so will delay the timely progression of your application to the faculty for review or your application may lapse.
When will I know if I’m accepted and how is the offer made?
You will be notified of the outcome of your application via the email address you have provided. In most cases, this will occur within 8 weeks of your complete application being submitted.
How do I accept my offer?
The offer email includes the terms and conditions of your offer and instructions on how to accept it.
How long do I have to accept my offer?
The duration you have to accept the offer will be mentioned in the offer email. It can be anywhere between one week to three weeks.
Can I defer my offer?
Typically students must commence their studies within three months of the offer letter. However in exceptional circumstances the commencement date may be deferred until a later date but this is assessed on a case-by-case basis.