Friday, January 6, 2012

Research Driven Education - PhD Study in Australia and New Zealand

Australia 2009Image by stoofstraat via FlickrBy Susan Slobac

For graduate students interested in pursuing a doctorate, New Zealand and Australia offer compelling programs well worth consideration. Universities in both countries provide doctoral programs that are research driven and include little class work.

While most programs in North American institutions involve a greater amount of class work, PhD study in Australia and New Zealand provide students with a greater opportunity to make actual contributions to their field through research.

To earn a PhD, Australia and New Zealand universities typically require students to complete three years of work. During this time, students are provided with access to world-class research facilities.

In addition to top-notch resources, those studying for a doctorate in Australia or New Zealand are matched with a faculty member that acts as a supervisor. Support is readily available to insure doctoral candidates can take full advantage of all available opportunities.

Requirements for PhD Study in Australia and New Zealand

To be considered for a PhD, Australia and New Zealand universities require students to complete a Master's degree first. In fact, if a Master's degree is missing, universities inevitably delay processing the application altogether.

To get on track for PhD study in Australia or New Zealand, it is recommended that students first enroll in a Master's program. After some time, it will be possible to convert to a PhD program within the university.

Applying for a doctorate in New Zealand and Australia

The application process for a PhD program is more time consuming than for undergraduate degrees since the degree itself is more customized and research driven. A descriptive outline of the intended research as well as a current CV is required to apply for a Doctorate.

New Zealand and Australia universities then use this information to match doctoral candidates with supervisors from their faculty. The quality of this match is critical for doctoral candidates, as supervisors play a significant support role in the process. For this reasons, candidates do well to consider potential supervisors as well as potential universities when applying for PhD study in Australia or New Zealand.

Once an application for PhD study in Australia or New Zealand has been accepted, doctoral candidates can coordinate an exact start date with their supervisor. Because the degree work is research driven, students are not tied to the usual university schedule. Technically, research can begin at any time of the year.

Susan Slobac advises college students on study abroad opportunities throughout the South Pacific. She provides guidance in regards to specialized programs such as PhD study in Australia and New Zealand.

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