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Forms and guidelines for research degree students

The forms you'll need throughout your candidature are available below. Make sure you read the information about each form so you fully understand what's involved.

These are all editable PDF forms. Many browsers will let you type directly on the form, but if not, try downloading and opening the file.


I need to...

Commencing Students:

Continuing Students:

Completing Students:

You may also wish to refer to Policies, regulations and codes of good practice.

Trouble viewing the forms? Download the latest version of Adobe Reader. If you experience issues with accessibility, please contact research.students@unisa.edu.au.

 

Claim for Relocation Allowance

What you need to know

  • Students who have been awarded a Domestic Research Training Program (RTPd) Stipend Scholarship or UniSA Postgraduate Award (USAPA) are entitled to claim expenses associated with relocating to their place of residence to take up their scholarship.
  • Some other scholarships may also provide a relocation allowance. Please refer to your letter of offer.
  • Reimbursement will be up to a maximum of $1,485.
  • Reimbursement can be for car hire, petrol, airfares and removalists, but not meals.

How to apply

  • Your application must be on the ‘Claim for relocation allowance’ form
  • You must lodge your form and tax receipts within 6 months of commencement.
  • You must also provide:
    • your original tax receipts
  • Graduate Research will contact you regarding bank details when your form is ready to be processed
  • If you have any questions please contact research.students@unisa.edu.au.
To claim for relocation allowance, you'll definitely need:
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Leave of Absence

Any type of leave of absence taken during candidature will count towards the total amount of leave. This applies to both full-time and part-time research degree students.

Prior to commencing the leave, a request for leave of absence must be approved by the Supervisor and REPL and be made on the appropriate form.

The research degree student will be notified by Student and Academic Services of the outcome of their application.

What leave am I entitled to?

Recreation Leave

  • You are entitled to twenty days recreation leave for each full-time equivalent year.
  • This leave is not deemed to be a ‘leave of absence’ and does not affect your candidature dates or consumption.
  • For scholarship recipients, recreation leave does not affect your scholarship payments and you will continue to receive your stipend during your recreation leave.
  • Recreation leave must be pre-approved by your supervisor and fit within your agreed milestones and timelines.
  • Each school monitors this leave differently and therefore you must ensure you follow your school’s procedure for managing recreational leave.

Are you in receipt of a Scholarship? Please refer to the Scholarship Benefits and Conditions to find out your paid leave entitlements.

Domestic Student

International Student

Commenced Scholarship prior to 2017

Commenced Scholarship prior to 2017

Commenced Scholarship from 2017

Commenced Scholarship from 2017

 


Administrative leave

  • The Associate Dean: Research Education may place a student on administrative leave for up to six months where progress is being impeded for reasons such as change of supervision or approval to change program/research.
  • Candidature and scholarship will normally be suspended during a period of administrative leave.

What are the conditions under which I can take a leave of absence?

  • Normally, you will have completed your confirmation of candidature and not still be in provisional enrolment. A leave of absence in provisional enrolment will not be approved unless there is documentary evidence of exceptional circumstances.
  • You will not have exceeded your allocated period of candidature.
  • You will have approval from your supervisor and Research Education Portfolio Leader / Research Degrees Coordinator / Associate Head of School: Research prior to taking the leave.
  • If the total leave exceeds 6 months, you have the approval of the Associate Dean: Research Education.
  • If the total leave exceeds 24 months, you have the approval of the Dean of Graduate Studies. In these instances you will need to provide a clear case why the leave is required, including a supporting statement from your supervisor and Associate Dean: Research Education.
  • If you are an international student visa holder you must be compliant with your requirements under your student visa.
  • If selected for jury duty you must supply a letter from the Office of the Sheriff of South Australia stating the days attended at the Criminal Sittings of the Court and complete a Juror Claim Form 2 – Payment to Employer form: http://www.courts.sa.gov.au/ForJurors/Pages/Claim-Forms.aspx. Both documents must be submitted with the leave of absence application form.   

 

Can I apply for retrospective leave?

  • Leave will be considered retrospective if the commencement date of the leave falls within a Research Period that has ended.
  • A request for retrospective leave must be made within 12 months of the period being applied for and be supported by documentary evidence.
  • Retrospective leave will only be approved in special circumstances.
  • Special circumstances are those which include, but are not limited to, medical, family, personal, employment or course-related circumstances which were:
    • beyond your control, and
    • did not make their full impact until on or after the census date and
    • the circumstances made it impracticable for you to complete the requirements of the research degree during the study period in which you enrolled.

 

If you are an international student on a student visa:
  • You may take recreational, medical, maternity or carers/family/adoption leave, as set out in the Academic Regulations for Higher Degrees by Research and/or your Scholarship Benefits and Conditions
  • The only other grounds for leave are 'compassionate or compelling circumstances' (i.e. circumstances that are beyond your control and have an impact upon your academic progress or wellbeing, as supported by documentary evidence). You will need approval from a  Student Advisor/International Student Officer in teh Student Engagement Unit in these cases. The Student Advisor/International Student Officer will require a full understanding of the nature for compassionate and compelling circumstance to be able to grant approval for ESOS compliance for your student visa. A letter template is available in the 'You might need' section below to provide to your medical practitioner to support this requirement.
  • Examples of compassionate and compelling circumstances include but are not limited to:
    • Serious illness or injury, as supported by a medical certificate;
    • Bereavement of close family members, such as parents or grandparents (where possible a death certificate should be provided);
    • Major political upheaval or natural disaster in your home country requiring emergency travel, which has impacted on your studies;
    • Where a supervisor has been unavailable, due to circumstances outside of the University's control, and this has affected your progress;
    • Critical situations with the student's family
  • Please note that a leave of absence may result in cancellation of your CoE, which may affect your student visa.

 

How do I apply for a leave of absence?

  • Your application for leave must be:
    • made on the appropriate form (see below)
    • made prior to taking leave, except where the leave is for unplanned personal/carers/sick leave, in which case you should submit your application as soon as possible after the event
    • approved by your supervisor and Research Education Portfolio Leader / Research Degrees Coordinator / Associate Head of School: Research
    • if the total leave exceeds 6 months, your application must be approved by your Associate Dean: Research Education.
  • You may need to provide the following information in your application:
    • a medical certificate
    • support from your sponsor (for sponsored students)
    • a progress plan for when you return from leave.
  • Submit the form to your school's research administration team
  • You must not assume that your request has been approved unless you have been notified in writing by Scholarships and Candidature, Student and Academic Services.
  • If you are an international student on a student visa make sure you read the section above before completing and submitting the form.
To apply for Leave of Absence, you'll definitely need:
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Change of Supervision

What you need to know

  • Panel supervision is the preferred supervision model at UniSA. Supervisor panels should be established as early as possible in your candidature and should include supervisors from other disciplines and advisors who are end users of research, wherever appropriate.  
  • Your supervisory panel must consist of a minimum of 3 supervisors made up of:
    • A Principal Supervisor (mandatory)
      • A University academic staff member (including Adjunct). Normally, a Principal Supervisor works in the Division where the student is enrolled.
    • One or more Co-Supervisors/Associate Supervisors from your discipline area
    • One or more Co-Supervisors/Associate Supervisors from other disciplines
      • Co-Supervisor is an academic staff member who provides support to the Principal Supervisor
      • Associate Supervisor is a researcher external to UniSA, who has been chosen for the role because of expert knowledge or scholarship in the designated area of research.
    • One or more End-user Advisors who are end users of research in a relevant discipline or industry
      • A member of a supervisory panel who is not an academic supervisor, and who has been chosen for their role due to their position as an end-user of research in the discipline, and/or their position in a relevant industry, and/or their capacity to provide expertise relevant to the student’s research. Advisors may be either external to the University, or a member of staff or an adjunct.
  • You must have a minimum of 2 internal UniSA supervisors within 3 months of your commencement. The remaining supervisory panel members should be appointed between that time and your confirmation of candidature.
  • You may change your supervision as a result of the following circumstances:
    • Your designated principal supervisor is unable to supervise you effectively for a period of six weeks or more.
    • Your research proposal requires a change in supervision for its approval to occur.
    • You wish to change the focus of the research after the research proposal is accepted and seek a change in supervision. In this instance you must also apply to the Associate Dean: Research Education to vary the research. (In these circumstances, the University reserves the right to decline the proposed change of focus).
    • At any stage of your candidature where additional expertise is required.
  • If there are concerns regarding your supervision or where supervision is unavailable for a period of time, it is important to consider whether administrative leave should be taken so as to conserve candidature and scholarship.

How to apply

  • Requests for a change of supervision must:
    • be made on the ‘Change of supervision’ form, and
    • have the approval of your supervisors, Research Education Portfolio Leader (or equivalent) and Head of School/Institute Director.
  • If you are changing division/school/institute, a ‘Program Transfer / Change of School/Division’ form must be completed and approved by the Associate Dean: Research Education.
  • You must not assume that your request has been approved unless you have been notified in writing by Scholarships and Candidature, Student and Academic Services.
To make changes to your supervision, you'll definitely need: 
You might need:

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Change of load between full-time and part-time enrolment

What you need to know

  • You may change load from full-time to part-time candidature, or vice versa, provided that your supervisor and Research Education Portfolio Leader (or equivalent) approves the recommendation.

Important information for scholarship recipients

  • University research degree scholarship conditions require you to be enrolled full-time (except in exceptional circumstances), so if you are on a scholarship and apply for a change of load from full-time to part-time you must seek approval from the relevant Associate Dean: Research Education.

Important information for international student visa holders

How to apply

  • Requests for a change of load should be made on the ‘Request to change load’ form. (see below)
  • You must not assume that your request has been approved unless you have been notified in writing by Scholarships and Candidature, Student and Academic Services.
To apply for change of load, you'll definitely need:
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Change of mode between internal and external enrolment

What you need to know

  • You may change load from internal to external candidature, or vice versa, provided that your supervisor and Research Education Portfolio Leader (or equivalent) approves the recommendation.

Important information for scholarship recipients

  • University research degree scholarship conditions require you to reside in South Australia (except in exceptional circumstances), so if you are on a scholarship and apply for a change of load from internal to external you must seek approval from the relevant Associate Dean: Research Education.

Important information for international student visa holders

  • International student visa holders must be enrolled internally, so if you return to your home country you must submit an application for change of mode.

How to apply

  • Requests for a change of mode should be made on the ‘Request to change mode’ form. (See below)
  • You must not assume that your request has been approved unless you have been notified in writing by Scholarships and Candidature, Student and Academic Services.
To apply for change of mode, you'll definitely need:
You might need:

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Transfer my Program/Plan

What you need to know

  •  You may apply to transfer to a different research degree provided the criteria for admission has been met.
  • Completed applications must be received by Scholarships and Candidature, Student and Academic Services prior to the relevant census date. Completed application received after the relevant census date will apply to the next study period.
  • If you are in receipt of a scholarship the length of scholarship may change dependent on the type of transfer. Your scholarship may also be affected by a change to your program within school/division/institute.
  •  You should discuss any proposed changes with your supervisor and Research Education Portfolio Leader (or equivalent).

How can I transfer from a Masters by Research to a PhD?

  • A recommendation to transfer from a Masters by Research to a PhD must be approved by the relevant Associate Dean: Research Education.
  •  A recommendation outlining how you meet the criteria for admission must be made by your supervisor and research education portfolio leader (or equivalent). The recommendation must:
    - state the relevant areas agree to the transfer and that the appropriate resources (this includes any possible extension if in receipt of scholarship) are available to enable you to transfer.
    -  include a review of the research proposal or, where the student is transferring to a different school/institute but has the same research topic, approval of the research proposal is provided by the relevant Associate Dean: Research Education.
  • If approved, your period of enrolment (excluding periods of deferral and leaves of absence) will be counted towards the new degree.
  • If you are on a RTP or University of South Australia funded scholarship your scholarship will automatically be extended.

How can I transfer from a PhD to a Masters by Research?

  • A recommendation to transfer from a PhD to a Masters by Research must be approved by the relevant Associate Dean: Research Education.
  • A recommendation outlining how you meet the criteria for admission must be made by your supervisor and research education portfolio leader (or equivalent). The recommendation must:
    - state the relevant areas agree to the transfer and that the appropriate resources (this includes any possible extension if in receipt of scholarship) are available to enable you to transfer.
    - include a review of the research proposal, updated to include details of the research project of appropriate scope for a masters program. If approved, your period of enrolment (excluding periods of deferral and leaves of absence) will be counted towards the new degree.
  • Normally, a change from a doctoral to a Masters by Research program will result in a decrease in the maximum period of scholarship support for candidates on scholarship. The duration of scholarship support already received will be deducted from the remaining scholarship length.

How to apply

For a Program/Plan transfer please complete:

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Study away from the University

What you need to know

  • You may be required to undertake study away from the University as part of your degree. This can be at an international or interstate university or organisation.
  • You must obtain permission from your supervisor, Research Education Portfolio Leader (or equivalent) and Associate Dean: Research Education. This must be done at least 1 month prior to leaving to allow time for approvals and processing.
  • Generally, study away will only be approved where you have completed your confirmation of candidature.
  • Normally, study away will be for a maximum of 6 months.
  • You may include recreational leave however this must be approved by your supervisor prior to leaving.
  • Your candidature and enrolment will be maintained whilst you are studying away and, if you are on a scholarship, this will also continue to be paid.
  • Study away is not grounds to apply for an extension to scholarship or candidacy as it can only be taken where the study away supports your research project. Where the visit is not supporting your research project a leave of absence should be applied for instead.
  • You must:
    • comply with the requirements of the overseas institution
    • undertake appropriate health and vaccination advice
    • consult regularly the Australian Government's travel advisory
    • ensure appropriate insurance cover is held
    • adhere to the University's travel guidelines.

International students on a student visa

It is your responsibility to ensure your proposed arrangements to study away from the University do not conflict with your visa requirements.

How to apply

  • Your application must be on the ‘Study away from University’ form and include:
    • a detailed plan of activities to be undertaken
    • an invitation from the university or organisation you are visiting (or approval from the appropriate authorities).
  • You must not assume that your request has been approved unless you have been notified in writing by Scholarships and Candidature, Student and Academic Services.
To apply to study away, you'll definitely need:
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Change of Personal Details

What you need to know

Complete this form if you have changed your name or citizenship.

If your address has changed you can update this via your student portal under 'my Personal Details'

Note: International student visa holders must notify the University of a change of address within 7 days.

To change your personal details, you'll definitely need:

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Withdrawal from program

What you need to know

  • Before you withdraw it is important to discuss your concerns with your supervisor and/or Research Education Portfolio Leader (or equivalent).
  • You may apply to be readmitted to your research program provided you have had less than three years absence and will continue with your previous research project. An application for readmission must be made to the Dean of Graduate Studies.

Important information if you are a scholarship recipient

  • Withdrawing from your program will result in cancellation of your scholarship. You will need to re-apply for scholarship if you wish to be readmitted at a later stage.

Important information if you are an international student on a student visa

  • The Department of Immigration and Border Protection will be notified of your withdrawal, which will result in the cancellation of your Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) and may affect your student visa.
  • If withdrawing within 6 months of commencement you will need to contact Graduate Research research.students@unisa.edu.au and request a release letter from the University.

How to apply

  • Discuss your concerns with your supervisor and/or Research Education Portfolio Leader (or equivalent).
  • If you wish to withdraw from your program you need to complete a ‘Program Withdrawal’ form (see below).
  • Once the form is complete please submit it to your divisional research office.
To withdraw from your program, you'll definitely need:
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Readmission

What you need to know

  • If you have withdrawn or your enrolment was suspended or administratively withdrawn, you may apply to the Dean of Graduate Studies for reinstatement, provided your have had less than 3 years of absence and will continue your previous research project.
  • If you are reinstated, and are over your allocated candidature time, you will be liable for tuition fees.

How to apply

  • Your application must:
    • be made on the ‘Application for readmission’ form (see below)
    • be made to the Dean of Graduate Studies
    • have the support of the principal supervisor, Research Education Portfolio Leader (or equivalent), Associate Dean: Research Education and Head of School/Institute Director
    • include milestones that have been established between the supervisor and the research degree student to ensure completion within the required timeframe. The Associate Dean: Research Education will be required to agree to these milestones and to monitor progress against milestones.
To apply for readmission, you'll definitely need:
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Extend a scholarship

Can you apply for an extension?

  • If you are a doctoral student you may apply for an extension to your scholarship if your scholarship conditions and benefits provide for it and you have not previously received an extension to scholarship.
  • Research Training Program (RTP) Scholarships, UniSA Postgraduate Awards (USAPAs), UniSA President Scholarships (UPS) and most other scholarships provide for up to 6 months' extension of scholarship under certain conditions.
  • If you are a masters by research student you are not eligible to apply for an extension to your scholarship.

Under what conditions are extensions of scholarship granted?

It's important to note that scholarship extensions are not automatically granted.

  • The University has an expectation that you will submit your thesis within 3 years. You and your supervisor should plan your research project around this timeline and set realistic milestones for completing within this time.
  • Grounds for extension may include:
    • equipment failure
    • delays in recruitment of participants for study
    • delays in obtaining data
    • delays in supply
    • delays in obtaining ethics approval
    • changes in supervision and project.
  • The unavailability of a supervisor will not normally be considered grounds for extension as there is an expectation that there always be at least 2 supervisors on the supervisory panel. Where there are issues with supervision and supervision is not available, administrative leave should be taken whilst the situation is being resolved. However, in some situations supervisory issues are appropriate grounds for extension and the Dean Research will assess these on a case by case situation.
  • The Dean Research must be satisfied that the grounds for extension were outside your and your school’s control and you have clearly demonstrated that everything was done to try and submit the thesis within 3 years. This should also be documented within your reviews of progress.
  • NOTE: The following reasons are not grounds for an extension:
    • Personal reasons such as illness or family/carers responsibility. Appropriate leave should be taken in these circumstances.
    • Work commitments (including assisting with grant applications).
    • Study away from the University.

How do I apply for an extension to my scholarship?

  • Applications for extension to scholarship must be made on the appropriate form (see below)
  • Applications should be submitted at least 6 weeks prior to the end of your scholarship (but no more than 3 months in advance) to ensure plenty of time for assessment and processing.
  • If you are enrolled part-time you can only apply for an extension to scholarship for a maximum of 6 months at a time. A new application and work plan must be completed if you wish to apply for the remainder of the scholarship extension entitlement.
  • To complete this form you must include the following:
    • A detailed explanation of the reasons for applying for the extension to scholarship, including the timelines and dates affected.
    • A detailed progress plan listing the thesis and research progress to date and the tasks that have been set to complete the thesis (download an example).
    • A supporting statement from you supervisor.
    • A support letter from your scholarship provider (for externally funded scholarships)
  • Each case is different and you must provide as much relevant information as possible to support your application and so that the Dean Research can assess it appropriately.
  • Electronic submission of the form to your supervisor will only be accepted from your UniSA student email account.
  • The Graduate Research candidature team will notify you of the outcome of your application via your UniSA student email account.
To apply to extend your scholarship, you'll definitely need:
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Exceeding candidature and overtime

What you need to know

  • Doctoral students have a maximum of 4 years to complete their program. This period of time includes 6 months for examination and any corrections.
  • Masters by research students have a maximum of 2 years to complete their program. This time includes 6 months for examination and any corrections.
  • If you do not complete your program within the required period of time you will need to apply for additional time.
  • You will need to provide a reason for going overtime and your application will need to be supported by your supervisor and approved by the Associate Dean: Research Education.
  • Approval will be subject to the availability of supervision and progress being monitored on a prescribed basis.
Domestic Students International students on a student visa
  • Extra time will only be considered where:
    • there are compassionate and compelling circumstances
    • it is an outcome of a review of progress
    • you have had an approved leave of absence
  • A new Confirmation of Enrolment will only be issued where extra time has been approved. Please contact the Scholarships and Candidature team at research.students@unisa.edu.au.

How to apply

  • Requests for overtime must:
    • be made on the ‘Application to go overtime’ form, and
    • have the approval of your supervisors, Research Education Portfolio Leader (or equivalent) and Head of School/Institute Director.
  • In completing this form you will need to include a detailed progress plan and work plan for completion that is supported by your supervisor.
  • You must not assume that your request has been approved unless you have been notified in writing by Scholarships and Candidature, Student and Academic Services.
To apply to exceed candidature and go overtime, you'll definitely need:
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