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Workers with solutions of all-inorganic perovskite quantum dots, showing intense photoluminescence when illuminated with UV light

Are you passionate about scientific discovery? Explore PhD and other graduate research opportunities at the University of Melbourne.

As a graduate researcher, your self-directed research will help us better understand how the world works. Whatever your passion, you’ll find stimulating opportunities at the University of Melbourne.

In your graduate research degree, you’ll receive research training of the highest quality. You’ll be supported by our community of experts – counted among the world’s best by number of citations, international awards and grant success.

During your degree, you’ll have opportunities for industry collaboration. You’ll also have the chance to work with experts from many disciplines across the University.

Through these opportunities, you’ll gain valuable knowledge and experience. You’ll also broaden your networks and enhance your career prospects with a degree you can take anywhere in the world.

Learn how we're making a difference 

We have a long history of important scientific discoveries and inventions, going back to the University’s founding in 1853. In the 19th century, our natural history collection formed the basis of Melbourne's first museum. In the 1930s, we carried out pioneering medical X-ray work. In the 1950s, we housed Australia’s first computer. And, more recently, our researchers developed the cochlear implant and flexible solar cells.

In 2013, physics researchers invented a device that supplies oxygen to hospitals without reliable electricity. This means it can be used in remote parts of countries like Uganda, Papua New Guinea and Nigeria. With support from donors like the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the FREO2 oxygen concentrator is now saving the lives of children with pneumonia – the single biggest killer of children worldwide.

Science research also benefits the local Melbourne community. Ecologists are working with councils and developers to install green roofs on Melbourne’s booming skyline. This research shows that growing plants on a building’s roof saves energy and reduces inner-city temperatures.

We are excited to host the new Science Gallery Melbourne, the Australian branch of the acclaimed Science Gallery International network. This gallery will be a living laboratory where art and science collide. Researchers are collaborating with artists and curators to create interactive exhibits that explain research to the public.

This is only a snapshot. We’re continuing to push the boundaries of scientific inquiry and working together to tackle the world’s great challenges.

Watch: Improving half the world’s diet

Find out how University researchers are creating genetically modified rice to address iron and zinc deficiencies.

Made Possible by Melbourne

Choose from a long list of research themes

As a graduate researcher, you can pursue opportunities in many areas of science.

Use this list to find research themes and supervisors for a graduate research degree within the Faculty of Science.

Biological sciences

Chemical sciences

Earth sciences

Environmental sciences


Mathematical sciences

Physical sciences

Depending on your research theme, you’ll be aligned with a school within the Faculty of Science:

You may also be interested in research in other areas, such as computer science, engineering, biomedical science and agricultural and veterinary sciences.

Partner with an overseas institution

Current funded joint PhD opportunities

When you undertake a joint PhD, you are supervised by academics from two institutions. As well as the University of Melbourne, you can partner with an international institution. This means your research will benefit from a truly global perspective. And you will enhance your prospects for an international research career.

We are currently offering the following fully funded joint PhD opportunities within the theme of science:

Discover what it's like to complete an international joint PhD in science

German PhD candidate Susi Seibt had always wanted to experience life in Australia. The international joint PhD program enabled her to fulfil both her personal and professional ambitions. After completing her PhD in chemistry, Dr Seibt secured her dream job at the Australian Synchrotron.

Read about Dr Seibt's international joint PhD experience

Headshot of Dr Susie Seibt

Join a collaborative research community

As a graduate researcher, you will work in a vibrant, collaborative research community. We offer seminars, workshops and exhibitions that will inspire you. And you’ll work with talented peers and supervisors who will challenge you and extend your ideas.

You could join one of our collaborative research initiatives and centres, for example:

You could also explore the possibility of a Joint PhD with another university.

Next steps

Meet PhD graduates working in science

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