Researchers

Managing your candidature

There are a number of things you must do to manage your candidature and ensure successful completion of your degree.

Duration and extension of candidature

Duration of candidature will vary depending on the degree.

  • Masters by Research: you have two years full time (or equivalent part time) to complete the degree. Candidature will be managed closely once 1.5 EFTSU is reached. Candidates will be required to apply for 2, 3 month extensions.
  • PhD and Professional Doctorate: you have three years full time (or equivalent part time) to complete the degree. You may apply for up to two 6 month (equivalent full time) extensions to your candidature.

Extension of candidature

If you need to extend your candidature you must submit an Application for Extension form to gradresearch@vu.edu.au.

Extension of scholarship

If you receive a scholarship or living stipend please email researchscholarships@vu.edu.au to determine how this will affect your entitlements before you submit your Application for Extension form.

International students

If you are an international student you must also contact Victoria University International to ensure you comply with your Visa requirements.

Occupational Health & Safety and progress reports

Graduate researchers and their supervisors are responsible for ensuring that research is conducted in a safe environment and in accordance with government health and safety legislation and procedures. Occupational health and safety includes ergonomics, working safely with hazardous materials (e.g. blood, chemicals), plant and machinery, electrical and other equipment and working at height etc.

As part of your candidature, you and your supervisor are required to identify hazards and risks associated with your research. For more information, download the Health and Safety in the Research Environment Fact sheet.

Converting your degree

Converting a Masters by Research to PhD

You may apply to convert your Masters by Research to a PhD if:

  • you are in the first 12 months (or equivalent part time) of your Masters
  • you have demonstrated exceptional ability and achievement in the first stages of your Masters
  • your research project has the capacity to be developed and extended to a standard that makes it suitable for doctoral level
  • your research supervisor supports your application and agrees your progress meets the criteria for doctoral work.

If your application is successful your candidature will normally commence at the date of initial enrolment in the Masters by Research degree.

Converting a Professional Doctorate or PhD to Masters by Research

Conversion of a Professional Doctorate or PhD to a Masters by Research can occur in two circumstances:

  • you are unable to complete your Professional Doctorate or PhD but have completed sufficient work to prepare a Masters level thesis (converting a doctorate or PhD to a Masters in these circumstances normally occurs by mutual agreement with your supervisor, supported by the relevant research committee)
  • the standard of your work is not sufficient for a doctorate or PhD but is suitable for examination at a Masters level. If this occurs you will be counselled and directed to convert your candidature to a Masters by Research.

If you have been on a scholarship for more than two years it will cease on the date your degree is converted to a Masters.

Converting a Professional Doctorate to a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) or vice versa

You may apply to convert a Professional Doctorate to a PhD or vice versa. Your application must:

  • clearly state the differences between the two degrees
  • be supported by your Principal Supervisor and your Flagship Research Institute
  • comply with other requirements determined by your Flagship Research Institute.

How to apply to convert your degree

If you need to convert your degree please discuss this with your Supervisor and submit an Application for Admission to a Research Degree.

You should also email researchscholarships@vu.edu.au to determine how this will affect your scholarship and eligibility for a research training place.

If you are an international student any changes to your enrolment must be approved by Victoria University International to ensure you comply with your Visa requirements.

For more information about the process and forms required, please contact the Office for Researcher Training, Quality and Integrity.

Enrolment variation

If you are admitted and enrolled in a research degree your enrolment must be continuous during the duration of the degree. The only time you do not need to enrol is during periods of approved intermission (leave of absence) and once your thesis has been submitted for examination.

If you intend to alter your enrolment as a scholarship recipient from full time to part time or vice-versa, please email researchscholarships@vu.edu.au to determine how this will affect your entitlements and eligibility for a research training place.

If you are not a scholarship recipient and intend to alter your enrolment from full-time to part-time or vice-versa, please email gradresearch@vu.edu.au.

You must complete a Unit of Study Enrolment Amendment Form to change your enrolment.

If you are an international student any changes to your enrolment variation must be approved by Victoria University International to ensure you comply with your visa requirements.

Change in thesis format or title

Once candidature is approved candidates wishing to change the format of their thesis or title, (for example, from a traditional thesis format to a Thesis by Publication or Thesis by Creative Project) need to declare the changes on the release of thesis form at the time the thesis is submitted for examination.

Intermission (leave of absence) and withdrawal

You can apply for up to 12 months intermission from your research degree by completing an Application for Intermission, with a possible extension of a further 18 months, Application for Additional Intermission. Time on leave is not counted towards your candidature.

You can withdraw from your degree at any time by completing a Course Withdrawal Application.

If you are an international candidate any changes to your enrolment must be approved by Victoria University International to ensure you comply with your Visa requirements.

Reinstatement of candidature

You can apply to reinstate your candidature and continue work on your project if:

  • you have previously withdrawn from your degree
  • your enrolment has lapsed
  • your enrolment has been terminated due to unsatisfactory progress

If your enrolment has lapsed or been terminated due to unsatisfactory progress you will have to demonstrate exceptional circumstances exist to justify reinstatement of your candidature.

Please complete an Application for Reinstatement of Candidature and forward it to the Office for Researcher Training, Quality and Integrity.

Contact us

If you require further information please contact your Principal or Associate Supervisor, or the Office for Researcher Training, Quality and Integrity.

Phone: +61 3 9919 4522Email: gradresearch@vu.edu.au