PhD Xtra

PhD Xtra offers all higher degree by research (HDR) students at Deakin an enhanced and individually tailored learning experience. Grow your capacity to relate your research to the broader framework of knowledge in your area and develop capabilities to propel you in your chosen career.

Go beyond the answers with PhD Xtra

Why follow paths when you can forge them? PhD Xtra offers all higher degree by research (HDR) students at Deakin an enhanced and individually tailored learning experience. Watch now - 0.52

What is PhD Xtra?

PhD Xtra is the name we give our Research Training Program at Deakin University. All HDR students are automatically part of the program upon enrolment and can immediately take advantage of the benefits by engaging in researcher development and industry engagement activities.

The PhD Xtra program comprises of several components designed to maximise your professional and academic development throughout your research degree. Explore these below.

Individual Learning Plans

This is your opportunity to take control of your study program, by building in training to help you complete your thesis and gain valuable knowledge and transferable skills.

Find out more about Individual Learning Plans


The PhD Xtra program includes at least one unit of research training coursework (students in some academic units may be required to complete additional units). The content of the units varies by faculty and discipline.

Find out more about Coursework


If you have an identified intended career pathway, the option of completing a career pathway placement will add another element to your individualised learning program.

Find out more about Placements

Oral thesis examinations

An oral thesis examination is an oral defence of a written thesis. The thesis is examined by external examiners in the normal way, but the examination panel also meets privately with the student to discuss the work. In some cases, the private examination can also be accompanied by a public event such as a seminar or presentation.

Students at the Institute for Frontier Materials and students enrolling in the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Built Environment (SEBE) from 2022 are required to undergo an oral examination. Students from other areas may also request approval from their academic unit.

Find out more about Oral thesis examinations

Portfolio of Assets

While completing a higher degree by research means making a contribution to the body of knowledge in your field, it also involves acquiring significant knowledge and embedded skills. The Portfolio of Assets makes these skills and knowledge more explicit and documents them in one place as a career advancement resource.

PhD Xtra program requirements

Individual Learning Plan (ILP)
Portfolio of Assets
Deakin Research Integrity Training
Deakin Research Induction
Respect at Deakin - HDR
Research Training Coursework Unit
Career Pathway Placements Optional
Confirmation of Candidature
Annual Candidature Review
Progress Support Panel As required
Oral Thesis Examinations As determined by Faculty/Inst.
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