As a graduate researcher, you’ll join a supportive and stimulating health research community. We’re motivated to find new cures, treatments and therapies that bring hope to individuals and whole communities.
We offer a wide range of health research projects for graduate researchers, across a diverse range of departments and centres. This means that you’ll find experience and expertise in your specific field of interest, and you’ll access support and guidance to deliver your own breakthrough research.
Whatever you’re curious about, you’ll find experts here who share your passion and determination. And you’ll have the resources and infrastructure to make your research happen.
Together, we will continue to solve the biggest health challenges of our time.
Explore our research
As a graduate researcher, you can pursue opportunities in vital health research, including:
- Cancer: Covering all aspects of research, prevention, detection, treatment, care and health system transformation.
- Child health: From infancy, through adolescence, and including reproductive potential, we’re working to optimise whole-life health.
- Immunology and infection: research, translation and public health policy and practice.
- Neuroscience: This includes psychiatry, mental health and psychology.
Research centres and institutes
We collaborate with 32 affiliated institutes, including Victoria’s leading research hospitals. You’ll have the opportunity to join research teams at:
Learn how we're making a difference
For more than 150 years, our research outcomes have improved people’s lives – in Australia and around the world.
- In the 1930s, we invented a jacket respirator for polio victims. Unlike the iron lung alternative, this meant polio victims could move around during treatment.
- In the 1970s, researchers at the University of Melbourne invented the bionic ear. This ground-breaking cochlear implant was first given to a patient in 1978. Since then, it has provided hearing to around 350,000 people in more than 120 countries.
- In the 1950s, we discovered neuraminidase, which enabled the flu vaccine. And a decade later, we progressed our knowledge of immunity by discovering T and B cells.
And today, we’re improving survival rates for pancreatic cancer. We’ve created Australia’s first ‘organoids bank’, where mini pancreatic organs are bombarded with cancer drugs. This new approach to drug testing means researchers can decrease the time it takes to individualise chemotherapy treatment – from months to weeks. This is significant, because average survival for pancreatic cancer patients is only three to six months from diagnosis.
We’re proud of these past discoveries and inventions. And we’re proud of our ongoing commitment to health research. We’re still leading the way, shaping healthcare delivery on a global scale.
Collaborate with other disciplines
As a health researcher, you can also work with researchers from other disciplines. This could be through one of the University’s multidisciplinary research initiatives.
Working with colleagues from other disciplines helps you reflect on the world in different ways. Depending on the topic, you might work with experts from areas like fine arts and music, education or law.
Interdisciplinary initiatives and institutes that address health-related themes include:
- Creativity and Wellbeing Hallmark Initiative
- Future Food Hallmark Initiative
- Indigenous Knowledge Institute
- Melbourne Disability Institute
- Melbourne Social Equity Institute
Graduate researchers also have access to many other interdisciplinary research opportunities across the University, including PhD Programs.
Partner with an overseas institution
Our international joint PhD opportunities allow you to access expertise, training and resources from two institutions, and spend a minimum of 12 months studying overseas.
Joint PhD projects within health have included:
- An investigation the course of schizotypal disorder in early childhood and tracking its long term effects, with University of Bonn (Germany).
- Modelling of China's successes to malaria elimination in the Asia-Pacific, an investigation of the molecular mechanism of effector secretion by the bacterial type IV secretion system and an exploration of brain imaging predictors of rapid treatment response to low-dose ketamine in patients with severe depression, with Shanghai Jiao Tong University (China).
- Research into defects in long-distance neuronal wiring in the large intestine and in Hirschsprung’s disease and an exploration into tackling neurodegenerative disorders, with KU Leuven (Belgium).
Explore more fully-funded joint PhD projects.
Work in a stimulating environment
The Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences is the largest health research faculty in Australia.
We employ more than 7000 staff, including 1500 graduate researchers. We’re located in the heart of Melbourne’s biomedical precinct.
Depending on your topic, you’ll be aligned with one of our six schools:
- Dental School
- Medical School
- School of Biomedical Sciences
- School of Health Sciences
- School of Population and Global Health
- School of Psychological Sciences
Within these schools, there are many different departments and centres.
- Search for a supervisor in your field of research
- Find out more about how to apply.
- Explore the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences website to learn more about health research.
- Read about the latest research findings in health and medicine.