HDR candidates

The following information has been established to assist HDR candidates  whilst the University is functioning remotely. It includes administration, research, and financial support. Information about arrangements for Semester 2 can be found here, and is supported by the University's graduated system for Return to Campus

Financial support

COVID-19 Extension Scholarship 

Candidates and their supervisors should be meeting regularly and working on strategies to mitigate the impact of COVID-19. Changes to the research program may be needed to ensure progress towards completion of the thesis within 3.5 years (or equivalent for MPhil).  

We are making available an additional extension scholarship in recognition of the extreme disruption that COVID-19 is likely to have on some candidates. You will be able to apply for this extension scholarship when you are between 3 and 3.5 years (1.5 - 2 years for MPhil). You will need to document the disruption and its impact through your annual milestones. The scholarship will be open for applications until 31 Dec 2021. 

Extreme disruption can be demonstrated by indicating the impact on field work, experimentation and data collection that cannot be mitigated or where alternative work cannot continue while restrictions to campus access and travel continue. Extreme disruption would not include the need to re-locate activities off campus where the activities are able to continue.  

If you have had an increase to your caring responsibilities due to the move off-campus, please consider using the leave provisions in your scholarship (such as medical/carer's leave) before proceeding with the COVID-19 Extension Scholarship application. You can apply for leave (up to 60 days due to caring commitments in response to COVID-19 restrictions) as part of your scholarship leave entitlements by completing the Apply for leave eForm via ISIS MMD-HDR.

The principles underpinning this scholarship extension are: 

  1. All scholarships funded by ANU will be eligible (RTP, URS, ANU, Other). 
  2. The extension will be available for extreme disruption and will be for up to 6 months in the first instance at the RTP base rate. Part-time candidates will receive their extension for up to 12 months in the first instance. 
  3. This provision does not include funding for scholarship top-ups. 
  4. The disruption must be documented with support from the supervisor.  
  5. The extension will be considered on application using the COVID-19 extension scholarship application form
  6. Funding will not be provided to extend scholarships that are already 4 years in length. 

To apply for the COVID-19 Extension Scholarship use this application form.

You can read more information on the COVID-19 Extension Scholarship webpage.

COVID-19 Onshore Program Extension Fee Support 

For the remainder of 2020,  international candidates who have been significantly impacted by COVID-19, can apply for fee support for up to 1 semester or 6 months:

To be considered you should fall into one of the following categories:

  1. Have an automatic program extension for a period in 2020
  2. Have an approved program extension for a period in 2020 

You will be asked to outline how your program has been significantly impacted by COVID-19, including any supporting documentation. Your application will be considered by the Dean HDR on a case by case basis. Candidates should apply by completing the HDR Candidate Application for COVID-19 HDR Onshore Program Extension Fee Support.

Alternatively, if you have already paid the program extension fees for an extension in 2020 you can complete the COVID-19 HDR Onshore Program Extension Fee Waiver Application form to seek approval for a reimbursement of fees for up to 6 months.

Your application will be considered by the Dean HDR on a case by case basis.

Emergency Financial Assistance

More information on other options for financial assistance is available here.


Administrative support

Administrative contacts

If you have a question relating to the administration of your candidature you can contact the following: 

Administrative issues: 

Local HDR Administrator/ HDR Convener/ Head of School (School level)  

  1. College HDR Administrator/ Director HDR/ Associate Dean HDR (College level)  

  1. Graduate Research Office (GRO) / ODHDR (University level)  

  1. Dean HDR (University level) 

Currently enrolled and unable to return to Canberra 

If you have been unable to return to Canberra please make sure you are in contact with your supervisor, local HDR administrator and the ANU Community Wellbeing Team.

Deferral of commencement

If you have already accepted your offer of admission, you can request a deferral of your commencement date if you have approval from your supervisor, as follows: 

  • For offers to commence in Semester 1 (Jan-Mar) - can defer until Semester 2 (Jul-Sep) 
  • For offers to commence in Quarter 1 or 2 (Jan-Mar or Apr-Jun) - can defer until Quarter 3 (Jul-Sep) 
  • For offers to commence in Quarter 3 (Jul-Sep) - can defer until Quarter 4 (Oct-Dec) 
  • For offers to commence in Quarter 4 (Oct-Dec) - at this stage you should wait until June before making a request to defer. 

You should contact the Graduate Research Office (hdr.admissions@anu.edu.au) to request a deferral - providing details of your name, school and current commencement date. 

Offshore commencement

If you need to commence your program while Offshore, you should discuss your current situation with your supervisor in the first instance.  Offshore commencement of your PhD/MPhil program will be considered once your visa has been granted. There are a couple of other requirements as well, including that you provide us with a plan for the first six months of your research project. We'll also need to see that you've had regular contact with your Primary Supervisor and that you've opened an Australian bank account.  

To apply for Offshore status you will need to complete HDR Candidate Application for External Study. The form will be available on this website once ready. For further information please contact the Graduate Research Office Pre-Candidature Team (HDR.admissions@anu.edu.au).  

Thesis submission

Administrative processes will continue as normal although delays due to COVID-19 are expected. To submit your thesis you should complete the Notification of Intent and Thesis Submission milestone eForm as per normal procedure. 

Changing from full-time to part-time

If you are not a scholarship holder or an International student on a student visa, there is no restriction on applying for part-time status, provided you have the support of your supervisor and delegated authority. Please complete the Manage My Degree-HDR 'Change of Intensity' eForm, via ISIS

Under normal circumstances, candidates in receipt of a scholarship, and International students who are in Australia on a student visa are required to maintain a full-time enrolment. We recognise that COVID-19 has impacted many current students and that some of you may experience limitations to your ability to undertake full-time research e.g. due to campus closure, and travel restrictions. 

For University-funded scholarships, the University may approve part-time study at its discretion where there are compassionate and compelling reasons to do so; the adverse impacts of COVID-19 fall into this category. 

Applications for part-time study for current students will be considered on a case-by-case basis. If you wish to change your attendance to half-time due to the impact of COVID-19, you should first discuss this with your supervisor, to ensure that you are able to progress your studies at a rate consistent with a half-time study load. 

If you are in receipt of a scholarship funded by an external organisation, you will need to check whether the conditions of your scholarship permit part-time study. 

Please note that if you are a scholarship recipient and your change to part-time status is approved, your scholarship will become taxable (this is an ATO requirement and not something determined by the Australian National University). A Taxation Declaration Form will need to be completed and sent to the Graduate Research Office. 

Please also note that if you are an international student in receipt of a scholarship and you convert to part-time, it is likely that you will need to apply for an extension of your student visa in the future in order to complete your studies. 

Research support

Research contacts

In the first instance you should be in contact with your supervisor to discuss all research related issues - they will be able to assist with reviewing your current situation and what changes can be made to mitigate / reduce the impacts on your research. 

If you are not able to contact your supervisor you should contact: 

  1. Supervisor or other panel members 
  1. HDR Convener / Head of School / Associate Director (HDR) (School level) 
  1. Director HDR or Associate Dean HDR (College level) 
  1. Dean of Students / Dean HDR (University level)

Continuing your research program 

In the first instance, please discuss with your supervisor appropriate variations to your research topic to enable continued progress in the absence of laboratory facilities, fieldwork location or other impacts the COVID-19 restrictions are putting on your current research. 

Options could include a change in project direction, undertaking online skills training, starting with the write-up, draft manuscripts, or literature reviews depending on the stage of candidature. 

If you are not able to continue working on your research you should consider leave of absence - please see the information page on HDR Candidature Program Management - research program leave options.  

PARSA also have a migration lawyer who can provide support:  https://parsa.anu.edu.au/news/article/6027/PARSA-Covid-19-Update/ 

To apply for leave please complete the Manage My Degree-HDR 'Apply for leave' eForm, via ISIS

If you have any additional questions regarding leave of absence, and other changes to candidature please contact the Graduate Research Office (GRO) - hdr.candidature@anu.edu.au

Research progress milestones

You are still required to complete scheduled milestones or request a change to the date they are due. You should ensure you are in contact with your supervisor at least weekly to discuss your research progress, and any other issues that may be impacting your work.  

If you are scheduled to present your TPR or Oral Presentation you should discuss appropriate arrangements with your supervisor. This may be to delay the milestone or to present remotely. 

You should consider using Zoom / MS Teams software to set up meetings between yourself and your supervisor, as required. 

Lab closures and fieldwork delays

In the event that your lab, studio, or research site is closed or you are prevented from continuing your experimental or practical research for any other reasons we encourage you to work with your supervisors to find other work that you can productively continue. as Alternative activities may include writing papers, extending your literature review, working on professional development activities or working on your thesis. For as long as you can continue productive work your candidature and scholarship payment will be continued.  

You can also consider changing intensity to part-time with approval of your supervisor. Please complete the Manage My Degree-HDR 'Change of Intensity' eForm, via ISIS

If you cannot, following discussions with your supervisor, continue to work on your research project you should request a leave of absence using the 'Apply for leave' Manage My Degree-HDR eForm, via ISIS

Library access

You can visit the ANU library website here, which provides access and easy 'how to' guides for finding your way around remotely. 

Resources on loan will have their loan period extended - borrowers will not incur fines during this period.   

Contacts for accessing library services

Library staff are available via library.info@anu.edu.au for help including booking consultation services. An FAQ is online with more information including how to request material. 

Library opening hours

The Library opening hours are available here

Study spaces with access to computers, printing, wi-fi and collections are available in the JB Chifley Library. The One Button Recording Studio is open for students and staff use on level 4 in the JB Chifley Library. 

Development and training

The Researcher Development team are working hard to continue to deliver programs remotely. Stay up to date with what is going on via their web page https://services.anu.edu.au/business-units/dean-higher-degree-research/researcher-development and be sure to follow them on Facebook and Twitter. 

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/ANUresearcher/ 

Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/anuresearcher