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Research Students

At ECU, we're committed to research that has strong social, economic, environmental and cultural impact. We make a practical difference to people's lives. When you undertake an ECU postgrad research degree, you'll be strongly supported. This includes a supervisor qualified in your field and a group of peer mentors. You'll also have professional development and networking opportunities and could be eligible for an ECU scholarship.

Why ECU?

  • QILT logo

    ECU top in teaching quality

    For the fifth year in a row, ECU has received the top undergraduate teaching quality ranking of all 37 public universities in Australia.

    ECU was also the top-ranked public university in Australia for undergraduate skills development for the sixth year in a row.

    View QILT results.

  • The Good Universities Guide 2021

    Good Universities Guide

    In the 2021 Good Universities Guide, ECU graduates have given us a 5-star rating for teaching quality, skills development, student support, learning resources, learner engagement and overall student experience.

    The 5-star rating for teaching quality has now been achieved for 14 straight years.

    Read more about the Good Universities Guide.

  • THE Impact Rankings 2020

    THE Impact Rankings

    ECU has been ranked number 9 in the world for Quality Education and is in the top 100 overall in the 2020 Times Higher Education (THE) Impact rankings, showing how the global higher education sector is working towards the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals.

    Read more about the THE Impact Rankings

  • THE World University Rankings 2020 Top 100 Young

    THE Young University Rankings

    ECU has been ranked in the world's top 100 universities under 50 years old in the 2020 Times Higher Education (THE) Young Universities Rankings, THE World University Rankings.

Research focus

ECU's world-class research

Our researchers are making world-first breakthroughs in a diverse range of fields.

These include discoveries in areas such as medical and health sciences, marine science, cyber security, green energy and mechanical engineering.

To find out more, visit our world class research website.

Research projects for students

ECU's eight schools are looking for prospective Honours, Masters by research, or PhD students to undertake research projects on particular topics.

These may be individual projects, or collaborations with other institutions or industry partners. In some cases, the projects may also include funding opportunities such as scholarships.

Find out more about research project opportunities in ECU schools.

What's your research dream?

If you're interested in a research degree, we'd first like to know more about you - including your research topic.

When you start the application process, we'll ask you for:

  • information about your work, academic history and qualifications
  • references from any publications or conference papers you've co-authored
  • a 300-word research abstract and a 2-page research proposal

If this information is assessed favourably, your application will progress to the next stage and we'll ask you for some more information.

Courses

If you're looking to be involved at the cutting edge of your field, our research degrees provide a stimulating intellectual challenge.

For your research degree you'll be expected to produce a written body of researched work, called a thesis.

If your degree is in a creative discipline, you may produce a creative work plus an exegesis (written exploration of your work).

Degrees of support

We have unique and innovative programs to support you through your research degree.

Here's a snapshot of what you can expect:

  • an orientation program and events to help you get started;
  • an extensive cross-discipline research training program;
  • discipline-specific training and research forums run by your school or research centre;
  • special seminars with guest presenters;
  • fully-funded annual writing retreat;
  • travel grants for international research placements;
  • an inter-university research training conference; and
  • support for planning your career beyond your research degree.

Need some help deciding what to study?

Our future student events include a mix of on-campus and online sessions designed to help you decide what to study at ECU.

School Research Centres and Supervisors

To give you an idea of the research we're undertaking across our schools, including leading researcher profiles, download one or more of these brochures.

Become World Ready

Experience Research at ECU.

World Class research

ECU has a vibrant research community, committed to supporting students on their research journey.

We provide dedicated staff and support services for postgraduate research, including school research and writing consultants, research and higher degrees staff, a research ethics team and specialist librarians.

"Without having the team of SOAR Ambassadors to draw on, I would have thrown in the towel within the first semester. They have been brilliant! Patient, tolerant of my technological challenges and always available when I needed them."

Graduate Research School

Janice Du Preez, PhD candidate

Janice Du Preez

PhD candidate
School of Medical & Health Sciences

The Graduate Research School offers free workshops to help you develop new research and professional skills, plus opportunities to network with other researchers.

GRS also organises regular social events to encourage a collaborative and supportive peer network.

Our SOAR Centre (Support Opportunities Advice Resources) also provides a key support service, connecting research students from different backgrounds, cultures, ages and academic disciplines.

Do you have any questions about Research Degrees?

Student stories

  • Danica Lee Larcombe

    Danica-Lea Larcombe

    Integrated PhD candidate (Biodiversity and Human Health)

    "Writing, rewriting and more rewriting!"

    The skills I have learnt while studying the Integrated PhD have assisted with my research proposal, literature reviews, data analysis and grant writing.

    My ethics application helped with recruitment of participants and surveys. I've also learnt how to develop and analyse complex surveys.

    I've attended many workshops run by GRS and found them invaluable. And the GRS SOAR centre helped when I experienced issues designing my surveys.

    My greatest challenge has been multitasking between data analysis, writing literature and coordination of participants. Also writing, rewriting and more rewriting!

    In the future I want to work with developers and government, and continue writing and teaching about the importance of nature to human health.

  • Bernadine Tucker

    Bernadine Tucker

    Master of Criminal Justice by Research graduate

    "I would definitely recommend ECU"

    One of the best skills I obtained from undertaking this study was how to critically analyse situations and propose reasoned arguments in response.

    Additionally, my writing skills enhanced significantly, giving me the confidence and ability to write substantial technical reports and proposals.

    My qualification has certainly helped me obtain senior employment opportunities and progress to a State Manager level.

  • Emmanuel Kokoroko

    Emmanuel Kokoroko

    PhD Business (major in Management)

    "I have no doubt I came to the right place for my doctoral degree"

    I chose to do my doctorate here because I found the PhD in Business program at the School of Business and Law to be focused on conducting cutting edge and innovative research in areas that are relevant to the global community.

    The ECU facilities and services are more than enough for you to achieve your dreams. The great thing about the lecturers is that they give you the opportunity to explore and discover your interests whilst at the same time they guide you to pursue those interests.

    I found my supervisors to be very supportive and dedicated to supervising my research work, they create an enabling learning environment that help me to develop my research skills and competencies.

    To the new international current and prospective students especially the graduate research students, I can assure you that ECU is a great place to study.

    ECU carries this climate of a modern, world-class and ambitious institution. It looks like a place I can achieve my goals and aspirations. I have no doubt I came to the right place for my doctorates degree.

Not sure what's next?

You're almost there. You just need to choose one of our amazing courses.

Choose a course