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Higher Degrees by Research (HDR) Policy

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Section 1 - Preamble

(1) This Policy was approved by Academic Board on 14 May 2013, and incorporates amendments to 17 January 2017. This Policy includes Schedule A: Academic Units.

(2) The following Procedures give effect to this Policy:

  1. Higher Degrees by Research (HDR) Academic Progress Procedure
  2. Higher Degrees by Research (HDR) Admission, Selection and Enrolment Procedure
  3. Higher Degrees by Research (HDR) Assessment Procedure
  4. Higher Degrees by Research (HDR) Supervision Procedure
  5. Joint Higher Degrees by Research Procedure.
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Section 2 - Purpose

(3) To outline the principles and responsibilities of the University in offering higher degrees by research (HDR).

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Section 3 - Scope

(4) This applies to students for HDR, their supervisors, faculties, institutes and University administrators. It does not apply to degrees by coursework or higher doctoral degrees.

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Section 4 - Policy

(5) The University will offer HDR that:

  1. meet the standards specified in the Higher Education Standards Framework
  2. provide high-quality research training to students
  3. promote a research culture of excellence, integrity, professionalism and mutual respect
  4. contribute to the University's research objectives
  5. develop student capabilities that will equip them for individual professional and career paths.

(6) The Academic Board will oversee the introduction, review and quality assurance of HDR courses and HDR supervision.

Candidature

(7) Admission and enrolment to HDR is conducted in accordance with the Higher Degrees by Research (HDR) Admission, Selection and Enrolment Procedure which stipulates the minimum academic entry requirements and selection criteria for a course.

(8) The University will provide each student with a supervision team throughout the duration of their HDR candidature, at least one of whom will be a suitably qualified and experienced member of Deakin University's academic staff taking the role of principal or executive supervisor.

(9) At least one HDR coordinator will be appointed in each Academic Unit to support HDR students in that Unit.

(10) Student supervision will be conducted in accordance with the Higher Degrees by Research (HDR) Supervision Procedure.

(11) Faculties and the Pro Vice-Chancellor Research Training and Performance Enhancement (PVCRT&PE) must review the progress of each student in accordance with the Higher Degrees by Research (HDR) Academic Progress Procedure.

(12) The period of candidature is prescribed by the University. For masters students the time is a minimum of one year and a maximum of two years. For doctoral students the time is a minimum of two years and a maximum of four years. These times are based on full-time candidature, and are doubled for part-time candidature. For students admitted to candidature based substantially on prior publications, the normal limit will be one year equivalent full-time.

(13) The assessment of a student's thesis will be conducted in accordance with the Higher Degrees by Research (HDR) Assessment Procedure.

(14) All joint HDRs are established and delivered in accordance with the requirements of the Australian Higher Education Standards Framework. Where there are differences between Deakin University's policies and procedures and those of the partner institution/s, the parties will determine procedures in accordance with the Joint Higher Degrees by Research Procedure.

Responsibilities

(15) The Faculty Executive Dean is responsible for the oversight of higher degree by research candidature in the faculty as set out in the procedures. The Pro Vice-Chancellor Research Training and Performance Enhancement (PVCRT&PE) is responsible for the oversight of higher degree by research candidature in institutes as set out in the procedures.

(16) The Head of Academic Unit is responsible for providing the student with access to resources and facilities necessary for the successful completion of their studies, taking into account the different disciplinary requirements and mode of enrolment.

(17) The Head of Academic Unit and the principal or executive supervisor are responsible for ensuring that the quality of the student's research training experience is maintained at an appropriate level, regardless of the mode and location of their enrolment.

(18) The principal or executive supervisor has overall responsibility for guiding the HDR student in their research, monitoring and supporting progress toward completion, reporting on the progress of candidature, and nominating examiners.

(19) Deakin Research (DR) will administer HDR candidature.

(20) All students and supervisors will comply with the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research and are expected to be familiar with the relevant University policies and procedures dealing with professional practice and conduct. Students must also comply with relevant industry standards, professional codes of conduct, contractual obligations involving third parties related to their research and relevant State and Commonwealth legislation.

(21) The Autonomous Sanctions Risk Assessment Panel will implement procedures to ensure compliance with the Autonomous Sanctions Act 2011 (Cth) and the United Nations Security Council Sanction requirements for applicants and students from sanctioned countries.

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Section 5 - Procedures

(22) Refer to the:

  1. Higher Degrees by Research (HDR) Academic Progress Procedure
  2. Higher Degrees by Research (HDR) Admission, Selection and Enrolment Procedure
  3. Higher Degrees by Research (HDR) Assessment Procedure
  4. Higher Degrees by Research (HDR) Supervision Procedure
  5. Joint Higher Degrees by Research Procedure.
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Section 6 - Definitions

(23) For the purpose of this Policy:

  1. Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research: Commonwealth guidelines for the ethical and responsible conduct of research.
  2. Autonomous Sanctions Risk Assessment Panel - the panel established by the University to assess whether HDR applicants and their projects comply with the Autonomous Sanctions Act 2011 (Cth) and the United Nations Security Council Sanction requirements.
  3. Candidature: the enrolment of the student in the HDR.
  4. Equivalent full-time: elapsed time where a student studies full-time, excluding approved intermission and including annual leave. For those enrolled part-time, equivalent full-time study is twice as long as for full-time students.
  5. Head of Academic Unit: Heads of the Academic Units listed in Schedule A: Academic Units.
  6. Head of Academic Unit nominee: a senior member of academic staff who is qualified as a principal supervisor.
  7. Higher degrees by research (HDR): academic awards of the University, as specified in Regulation 5.2(2) - Higher Education Award Courses - General.
  8. HDR coordinator: A member of academic staff who satisfies the qualification to be a principal supervisor, who is not a higher degree by research student and whose role is to support HDR students in their unit.
  9. Joint higher degree by research (joint HDR): an HDR offered jointly by the University and a partner institution or institutions.
  10. Supervision: the provision of advice and guidance during the course of a higher degree by research.