Ecology and Evolution

3 minute read

Ecology and Evolution

The Ecology and Evolution PhD Program is a supplementary learning opportunity to enrich your graduate research experience. The program offers an opportunity to share your research with other disciplines and expand your peer network.

You can find existing Graduate Research courses using our Find a Course search tool.


The Ecology and Evolution PhD Program is a supplementary learning opportunity. It will enrich your graduate research experience.

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. Through the program, you’ll broaden your networks and improve your career prospects.

What’s special about our Ecology and Evolution PhD Program?

Learn from the world’s best

The University’s researchers are national and international leaders in their fields. This gives you tremendous opportunities for high-quality research training and intellectual development.

We challenge ideas. We do not simply collect and analyse data. We use knowledge to address important environmental and social issues. These include:

  • conservation decision-making
  • climate change and mitigation
  • population health
  • sustainable natural resource management
  • urban planning.

Access a breadth of expertise

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 overseas.

You can conduct research in the lab, in glasshouses, or in the field.

Develop your professional and research skills

The program offers personal and professional development opportunities.

  • Be part of a network of PhD students working across every branch of ecology and evolution.
  • Undertake customised training in quantitative skills based on your needs. This could include statistics, modelling, programming and bioinformatics.
  • Access complete subjects, workshops and specialised short courses. This provides you with more skills to enhance your research capabilities and employability.
  • Receive mentoring from a recent PhD graduate.
  • Take part in an optional paid internship program. You’ll gain real-world experience in your field with a host organisation.
  • Attend group meetings with leading scientists visiting the University. Talk with them about their work and careers.
  • Participate in an annual Ecology and Evolution Research Symposium. This is organised by students, for students.

You’ll leave the program with a certification listing all the skills you've acquired. You can use this when looking for new opportunities.


When you join our PhD Program, you’ll receive extra targeted support to kick-start your career. You may

access this support in the form of:

  • specialised workshops
  • short courses
  • drop-in sessions
  • mentoring
  • placements and internships.

We also have a focus on quantitative skills. You’ll receive a custom training plan based on your own background. The skills and experience you gain will set you apart from other PhD graduates.


To take part, you must be enrolled in a PhD at the University of Melbourne. Your thesis topic must relate to the theme of ecology and evolution.

When you join the 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.

If you’re a current University of Melbourne PhD candidate

  • Talk with your supervisor about participating.
  • Contact us with your name, contact details, supervisor’s name and working thesis title.

If you want to apply for a PhD with us

  1. Find a supervisor from one of the following schools:
    1. School of BioSciences
    2. School of Geography
    3. School of Ecosystem and Forest Sciences.
  2. Get written support from a supervisor.
  3. Apply for admission to the Doctor of Philosophy (Science).
  4. Once you’re accepted as a PhD candidate, you'll have access to the program’s charter. Read it to understand what’s expected of you.
  5. Email us with your name, contact details, supervisor name and working thesis title.

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