PhD Programs

5 minute read

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Give yourself an edge. Join a multidisciplinary PhD Program to enrich your graduate research experience.

The University of Melbourne’s PhD Programs are supplementary learning opportunities. They provide the chance to work with others who share a passion for discovering new knowledge in your area of interest. You’ll connect with graduate researchers from other disciplines. And you’ll engage with relevant external organisations. By participating, you’ll broaden your networks and improve your career prospects.

Each program features a series of activities to enhance your learning experience. These opportunities exist outside your core PhD studies. You will attend masterclasses, workshops and seminars, delivered by experts in your field. You will keep up to date with research findings and breakthrough discoveries. And you may have opportunities for mentoring and internships.

Why join a PhD Program?

By joining a PhD Program, you will set yourself up for success. You'll have extra support and opportunities throughout your research degree. This will enable you to:

  • access a breadth of expertise from across the University
  • consider your research from the perspective of other disciplines
  • place your research in a broader multidisciplinary context
  • build multidisciplinary networks that lead to postdoctoral pathways
  • develop professional skills to enhance your career prospects
  • improve your research and communication skills to become an accomplished graduate researcher.

Are you eligible?

  • To take part, you must be enrolled in a PhD at the University of Melbourne. Your thesis topic must relate to the PhD Program theme.
  • When you join a PhD Program, you will remain enrolled in your current department.
  • You can join a PhD Program at any time during your candidature. You will remain part of the program until you complete your doctoral studies.

Explore the individual PhD Programs

Biomedical Engineering Innovation PhD Program

The Biomedical Engineering Innovation PhD Program is a multidisciplinary research training initiative. It is a supplementary learning opportunity that enriches the graduate research experience.

The program brings together people who work on research related to biomedical engineering, including:

  • PhD students, supervisors and alumni from across the Melbourne Biomedical Precinct
  • industry and clinical partners.

The program is facilitated by:


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Child and Adolescent Health PhD Program

The Child and Adolescent Health PhD Program complements your PhD studies. As a participant, you will join more than 200 graduate researchers at the Melbourne Children’s Campus. This campus is a fully integrated paediatric teaching hospital, University department and research institute. Our research streams include:

  • cell biology
  • genetics
  • clinical sciences
  • population health
  • infection and immunity.

We undertake multidisciplinary research in the following areas:

  • clinical trials
  • genomics
  • stem cell medicine
  • global health
  • life-course (longitudinal population) studies
  • health services research
  • digital health
  • data science.


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Comprehensive Cancer PhD Program

The Comprehensive Cancer PhD Program provides specialist cancer research training and support for PhD candidates. It complements your core PhD activities.

The program provides a unique opportunity for PhD candidates researching cancer-related topics to work together. It attracts PhD candidates from a range of disciplines.

To be eligible, you must be enrolled as a PhD student in a partner organisation. Together, these organisations form the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre (VCCC) alliance. Through this program, you will experience clinical and research activities across the alliance.

Upon completion, you will be ready to conduct world-class cancer research. The program will also prepare you for a wide range of career options. It does this by broadening the scope of your research knowledge. And by providing professional development and career training programs.


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Ecology and Evolution PhD Program

When you join our PhD Program, you’ll feel part of a community. You will work with others who share a passion for research related to ecology and evolution. You’ll connect with graduate researchers from other disciplines. And you’ll engage with relevant external organisations. You'll access expertise across the many research areas within ecology and evolution. This adds breadth to your research experience, and helps to expand your network. You could work with researchers in the following areas:

  • ecological or evolutionary theory
  • marine, terrestrial or freshwater ecosystems
  • animals, plants, microorganisms, communities or the environment
  • native species or invasions, within Australia or internationally.


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Infection and Immunity PhD Program

As a participant, you will work with others who share a passion for discovering new knowledge about infection and immunity. In this program, you will:

  • learn from global leaders in infection and immunity
  • access high-calibre scientists and facilities
  • work in an environment where discovery research meets diagnosis and surveillance
  • work with experts in infectious diseases, epidemiology, genomics and more.

The Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity delivers this PhD Program. The institute is a joint venture between the University of Melbourne and the Royal Melbourne Hospital. You may join this program if you are:

  • a graduate researcher at the Doherty Institute
  • enrolled in a PhD at the University of Melbourne.

The Doherty Institute is home to high-quality discovery research. It has large diagnostic operations in virology and bacteriology. So, the institute can provide vast research training opportunities in many areas, including:

  • epidemiology
  • clinical and translational research
  • infectious diseases surveillance
  • outbreak investigations.

As a program participant, you will access first-class research training in your primary discipline. And you can supplement this with extra workshops, seminars and potential internships. Our key partners in biopharmaceutical-linked industries provide these extra training opportunities. These connections will assist with future employment opportunities, beyond the pure research environment.


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Medical Biology PhD Program

When you join the Medical Biology PhD Program, you will work with others who share a passion for research related to medical biology.

You will learn more about:

  • medical biology
  • research management
  • commercialisation of research
  • clinical translation.

The Medical Biology PhD Program is delivered by the Department of Medical Biology at the University of Melbourne. When you join, you will undertake research training at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research (WEHI).


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Mental Health PhD Program

When you join the Mental Health PhD Program, you’ll feel part of a community. You will work with others who share a passion for discovering new knowledge about mental health. We have graduate researchers from a wide range of disciplines, including:

  • psychiatry
  • psychology
  • epidemiology and community mental health
  • history and philosophy of psychiatry
  • psychiatric nursing
  • social work.

This interdisciplinary PhD program offers PhD candidates in mental health a unified research training experience. It is a joint initiative of the following schools and departments:


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Migration, Statelessness and Refugee Studies PhD Program

The Migration, Statelessness and Refugee Studies PhD Program is delivered by the Melbourne Social Equity Institute at the University of Melbourne.

You will work with others who share a passion for discovering new knowledge in this area. You will engage with researchers from other disciplines across the University. And you will connect with relevant external organisations.

These connections will allow you to:

  • consider your research from the perspective of others
  • develop your research in reference to current real-world challenges
  • enhance your career prospects.

During the program, you will attend masterclasses, workshops and seminars. There will be a focus on ethics and research methods. And you will learn how to communicate your research to diverse audiences.


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Neuroscience PhD Program

The Melbourne Neuroscience PhD Program brings together graduate researchers from many disciplines. These researchers share a passion for discovering knowledge in the area of neuroscience. When you join, you will access the best in neuroscience research from across the University.

The Melbourne Neuroscience PhD Program will help you to:

  • connect with other researchers from across the University
  • build relationships with relevant external organisations
  • develop your future career path after graduation
  • consider your research topic from different perspectives
  • contribute to the discovery of new knowledge
  • expand your professional and personal networks
  • learn how to engage with industry.

We have a strategic location in Parkville. This allows us to link across faculties. And we are close to key partner organisations including hospitals, research institutes and industry partners.


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One Health PhD Program

The Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences hosts the One Health PhD Program. This program is open to graduate researchers from the:

The University of Melbourne’s PhD Programs are supplementary learning opportunities that enhance your graduate research experience. To join this PhD Program, you must be enrolled in a PhD with a One Health focus. The One Health concept recognises that water, soil, plant, animal and human health are interdependent. The University’s vision is to conduct high-quality, high-impact research across the One Health spectrum. This PhD Program is a key part of our One Health strategy. You can engage with our guiding principles to create a healthy and sustainable world.


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