Joint or Dual/ Cotutelle PhD Applications – ANU Postgraduate Research

ANU is committed to the delivery of high quality research training of PhD candidates through the provision of an exceptional research environment and access to opportunities to work with the best researchers nationally and internationally. Research students at ANU are mentored by world-leading experts, have access to state-of-the-art research facilities and become part of a supportive community and culture of discovery.

Joint and dual PhD programs between ANU and partner institutions are able to deliver an outstanding research training experience in a collaborative environment across two institutions. Students are enrolled at both universities for the duration of the program and must be in residence at each university for a period of time as stipulated in the agreement.

A Joint Award refers to the award of a single Doctor of Philosophy degree to participating candidates upon successful completion, where the jointly awarded nature of the degree and the name and insignia of the other Institution, will be indicated on a single testamur awarded by the Home Institution.

A Dual Award refers to an award by two collaborating institutions issuing two testamurs, each recognising that the program was carried out as part of a dual award.

A Cotutelle Programis a type of one-off, non-continuing program arranged for a single individual with a French partner institution without an institutional-level agreement.

Joint and Dual Award PhD programs allow research student opportunities to:

  • participate in collaborative projects between supervisors at home and host institutions
  • experience multiple research environments
  • live and work in different locations

Type of Agreements

Joint & Dual/Cotutelle programs generally fall under one of two types of agreements:

  1. Institutional Agreement: This is an over-arching agreement between the ANU Research School/College and another institution that aims to establish a long-term research collaboration. These agreements can be initiated by either the ANU or the partner institution. They are established when institutions want multiple/cohort of students to enrol in the Joint and Dual/Cotutelle program over a long period of time. The agreement specifies the requirements, governance, commitments and clauses for the program established under it and applies to all the students who enrol in such programs.
  2. Individual Agreement: This is an agreement that is set up between ANU, the partner institution and an individual student for their Joint and Dual/Cotutelle program. These agreements can be initiated by either the ANU, the partner institution or the student. The clauses in this agreement only apply to the parties included in the agreement and for the duration mentioned. Individual Agreements must be completed for every student even if an overarching Institutional Agreement exists with a partner institution.

Application process

The application process to a Joint and Dual/Cotutelle Award PhD program differs depending on whether you are a prospective or a current student at the ANU.

Step 1: Check your eligibility

Prospective ANU students Current ANU Students
Check the Programs & Courses website to ensure that you meet the academic requirements of your preferred research program at ANU where you wish to be hosted. You must meet the relevant academic and language requirements of ANU and the partner institution. If you are interested in pursuing a joint or dual award you should apply within six months of commencing your PhD program at the home institution and commence the joint or dual program within the first 12 months of their PhD.
If you are applying for a specific scholarship, it is important that you check the open and close dates for that scholarship. To view potential ANU research scholarship opportunities, please see the ANU scholarship website.  

Step 2: Prepare your application

Once you have confirmed you are eligible to apply for admission to a Joint or Dual Award PhD program you need to secure a supervisor at ANU and the partner institution that are willing to supervise your research. For more details visit the How to Apply webpage.

Once you have identified the supervisor you would like to work with, use the information in the How to Apply page as a guide to prepare  and submit a complete admissions application (applicable to Prospective ANU students only).

Step 3: Apply for a Joint or Dual / Co-tutelle Award PhD program

STEPS Prospective ANU students Current ANU students
1 ANU Application: As a prospective candidate, you should first submit an application for admission using the ANU Programs & Courses website. You must indicate on your admission application form whether you still wish to be considered for admission if your application for a scholarship is unsuccessful, and your interest in studying a joint or dual award PhD program. Not Applicable

Joint and Dual Award PhD Application: In consultation with your ANU Supervisor complete the Joint and Dual Award PhD application form.


Provide evidence of a strong research link between supervisors at both institutions, and an outstanding collaborative research training environment with clear benefits for the PhD student above and beyond a simple visiting appointment to conduct research at another institution.


Submit this form to your Research School.


If you are aware of an existing Institutional Agreement, inform your Research School when submitting the Joint/ or Dual/Cotutelle Application form. The HDR Administrator will then attach the Agreement to your application.


If you are not aware of an existing Institutional Agreement, proceed to Step 4.

4 Candidature Agreement (or Individual Agreement) form for Joint or Dual / Cotutelle Award PhD Program: In consultation with your ANU Supervisor complete the Candidature Agreement. This document will also need to be reviewed by the partner institution, further assistance can be sought from your local HDR Administrator or the Graduate Research Office.

Step 4: Approvals

The documents in Step 2 & 4 in the table above are processed as per your College’s procedures and internal timelines. For more information on processing times and approvals please contact your local HDR Administrator, or the Graduate Research Office.

Applications to the University are assessed on an ongoing basis. The ANU will contact you about the result of your application as soon as possible. Applications usually take between 6-8 weeks to assess, or longer if you are applying for a scholarship. All communications, including application outcomes, are sent to your email account so it is important that you provide an email address in your application that you check regularly and you can easily access.