MRes general FAQs
What are the main features of the Master of Research (MRes) program?
The Master of Research is a combination of advanced disciplinary coursework and structured research training. In preparation for their individual research projects, candidates will survey key ground-breaking and innovative research issues in their chosen field, while developing skills in research practice and project management. The MRes provides an improved pathway to higher research degrees, equipping candidates with intensive research experience before beginning doctoral study (PhD). As the first Australian program fully compatible with overseas practice, the MRes also provides greater international recognition and opportunities for further study overseas.
What is the difference between Macquarie's Master of Research and a Masters by Research somewhere else?
As a combination of advanced coursework and research training, the MRes is different to other Research Masters currently available in Australia. Most Australian universities offer two research degrees, the doctorate (normally the PhD) and a Research Masters, usually a Master of Philosophy (MPhil). Candidates gain admission to the MPhil after completing a Pathway program (such as a Bachelor Honours degree). They then undertake a large research project. The MRes is an improved Pathway program, providing candidates with deeper and broader knowledge of their discipline area and more substantial research skills before they enter higher research degrees.
I'm enrolled in an Honours degree now. Am I also required to complete the MRes in order to gain entry to PhD?
Candidates commencing higher degree research (HDR) degrees at Macquarie from 1 January 2014 will need to have completed the Master of Research or equivalent (equivalence is subject to review on a case by case basis). Candidates who have completed an honours degree (or a Masters by coursework) may receive up to 32 credit points towards the MRes program based on the content of previous study. Candidates who receive 32 credit points as credit for previous study (or recognition for prior learning) would effectively start in Year 2 of the program and then will be eligible to progress to a PhD upon successful completion of Year 2 of the MRes and meeting the requirements.
What is the duration of the program?
The duration of the MRes program is two years full-time, or equivalent part-time.
Can I study part-time?
Domestic candidates may study part-time. Most international candidates must study full time except in those cases where the candidate's visa permits them to undertake part-time studies. Please note that part-time status may affect eligibility for financial support.
Is this program available by distance?
This program is not available to study by distance, though some Year 1 units may be available by distance education.
How many candidates will be admitted to the program?
There is no cap on candidate places. All applicants approved for the program will be admitted.
What is the CRICOS course code?
Master of Research (Faculty of Arts)
Master of Research (Faculty of Business and Economics)
Master of Research (Faculty of Human Sciences)
Master of Research (Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences)
Master of Research (Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Master of Research (Graduate School of Management)
Entry requirements enquiries
What are the entry requirements for the Master of Research (MRes) course?
For admission to the program candidates must have a bachelor degree from a recognised institution, at a specified level of performance, usually the equivalent of a credit average (65 per cent) in their final year (or 300-level). Some disciplines may have extra admission requirements such as a portfolio of work or a higher level of performance of bachelor study. Please see the Admission Requirements website for details.
What if my undergraduate 300 level average results are just below 65? Am I eligible for entry and will I receive the stipend?
Consideration will be given to marginal results on a case by case basis.
How do I submit an application for admission into the Master of Research (MRes) program?
Information about the online application process can been found at:
- Information for assessors log in with your OneID
- Information for applicants includes instructions, help with technical problems and document uploading, application form FAQs
When should I submit my application?
Generally applications for MRes will be open from April for admission in the following year. International applications will close on 31 August (for enrolment only) and 31 July (for enrolment and scholarship through the main IRTP/iMRTP scholarship round.) Domestic applications will close on 31 October.
What if I have missed the deadline for applications?
Late applications received shortly after the closing deadline (1 or 2 days) may be considered on a case by case basis but priority is given to on-time applications. Otherwise, they will be considered for the next available intake.
Do I need to find a supervisor?
You do not need to find a supervisor. If you are applying for entry into Year 1; your supervision arrangement will be confirmed in consultation with you as you commence your Year 2 research project. If you are applying for entry into Year 2 and meet the entry requirements, supervision arrangements will be made based on your research proposal and suitable supervision available.
Do I need to prepare a research proposal?
A brief research proposal (1-2 pages) will be required prior to entry to Year 2 of the Master of Research. This will help the department to identify potential supervisors for you.
Should I include a CV with my application?
Applicants are required to submit a CV which outlines their experience and achievements to support their application.
Do I need referee reports?
No academic referee reports are required.
How do I know which Faculty to select?
By indicating your discipline focus we will be able to align you with one of our Faculties.
What is a Discipline focus?
An academic discipline, or field of study, is a branch of knowledge that is taught and researched at university level. Usually, candidates who have completed an undergraduate degree will have completed a Major (or equivalent) in a certain academic field. This is an example of a field of study.
Do I need to choose a Discipline focus in Year 1?
Yes, you will have a discipline focus in Year 1. We will ask you for an optional sub-discipline focus if you have one. This will help us in allocating you to a Faculty and a department or discipline, where you can get academic advice. There is flexibility to choose your units of advanced disciplinary content from across the whole range of the university's MRes offerings. However, you will need academic approval for your program, to guarantee it will provide you with the right preparation for later study.
My undergraduate degree will not be completed until Session 3, rather than the current session 2. Will that affect my eligibility for the MRes to start in Session 1?
You should apply for the MRes at the normal time and make it clear that you intend to complete your degree by the end of session 3. This will still be within time for the start of the MRes coursework in session 1. Your graduation date does not affect your eligibility.
How can I verify that my application is complete and that you have received all the required documentation?
If you apply online via the eApplication, the system will alert you if there are any outstanding documents. Our team will also check the required documents at the pre-assessment level and will advise you if any required information is missing.
When will I be notified of the outcome of my application?
You will be notified of the outcome of your application within approximately 6-8 weeks after receipt of your complete application.
I am an international candidate. What kind of visa will I need in order to study in the Master of Research program?
Most International candidates will need to apply for a student visa in order to study in Australia unless they are holding other types of visa which may allow them to study in Australia. Candidates will need to apply for a Higher Education Temporary visa (subclass 500) for study in the Master of Research program. However, this may vary based on individual circumstances. Please see the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) website for further information.
Credit exemption enquiries
Can I obtain credit exemption from some part of the program because of my previous studies (Recognition of Prior Learning)?
Candidates who have completed a Bachelor honours degree or a Masters by coursework may receive up to 32 credit points towards the program, based on the content of their previous study. Candidates who receive 32 credit points as credit for previous study (CPS) or recognition of prior learning (RPL) would effectively start in Year 2 of the program.
I have already completed a Masters degree with a dissertation, will I receive advanced standing (exemptions)?
Candidates who have completed a Masters degree with a dissertation (or an honours degree) may receive up to 32 credit points towards the program, based on the content of their previous study. Candidates who receive 32 credit points as credit for previous study (CPS) or recognition of prior learning (RPL) would effectively start in Year 2 of the program.
Is there a specific enrolment day?
Enrolment procedures will be outlined in your offer letter. There will not be a specific day. Enrolment and approved units will be processed by the Higher Degree Research Office starting 2 weeks prior to commencement.
Do I need to declare a discipline or can I select units from across various Faculties?
It is important to align candidates with a Faculty and department or discipline. There is the flexibility to select units from across all 700 level units. However, selection of units will be subject to academic approval.
Is there a minimum number of units I should enrol in each semester?
Full time candidates are required to enrol in a minimum of 3 units per semester. They should plan to complete year 1 of the program within 1 year.
Part time candidates may enrol in a maximum of 2 units per semester. They should plan to complete year 1 of the program within 2 years.
Candidates must ensure they are enrolled in sufficient units to complete the coursework component of their program (year 1) within the required time frame.
A student who is taking an unduly long time to complete a program of study may be excluded from further enrolment. An unduly long period of time for the Bachelor of Philosophy is considered to be effective enrolment longer than 4 years. For further information, see General Coursework Rules.
Will I have access to study space?
There is a dedicated postgraduate study area in the Library, with about 160 individual study spaces available to MRes candidates, using their student cards. MRes candidates need to apply for access through the library.
Is the Master of Research enrolment continuous, like the Master of Philosophy?
Year 1 of the Master of Research program is based around sessional enrolment periods. Year 2 is a time based program like the Master of Philosophy. Progression from Year 1 to Year 2 is dependent on satisfactory completion of Year 1.
What if my Year 1 results do not meet the minimum to continue into Year 2 of the program?
Any candidate who passes the first year of the MRes program will be eligible to continue to Year 2. Candidates whose results do not meet the minimum to automatically continue into Year 2 may choose to withdraw from the program or enrol in Year 1 units in the following session, subject to academic approval.
What if I decide I don't want to continue after the first year of MRes?
Candidates who successfully complete Year 1 of the program and decide not to continue on to Year 2 may exit with the Bachelor of Philosophy degree. Candidates should contact their Faculty Higher Degree Research Office for information about how to exit with the Bachelor of Philosophy.
What are the fees for the MRes program?
In Year 1, domestic candidates are enrolled in the Bachelor of Philosophy (BPhil) as Commonwealth supported students and are liable for student contribution amounts which can be deferred through the HECS-HELP scheme if they are eligible.
In the second year of the MRes, the University uses the Commonwealth Government’s Research Training Program (RTP) to support tuition fee offset scholarships for domestic candidates. Candidates entering the second year of the program are automatically considered for a tuition fee offset scholarship. Candidates in receipt of tuition fee offset scholarships are not required to pay tuition fees.
International candidates are required to pay fees for the whole program.
A full description of the fees for this program can be found on http://www.hdr.mq.edu.au/information_about/research_training_degrees/additional_info/fees.
Comprehensive information on fee matters can also be found at the following locations:
- general information from the Department of Education
- specific information from Macquarie University's Student Finances website
- specific information from Macquarie University's Fees website
I am a domestic candidate. Will I automatically be on a Commonwealth Supported Place in Year 1? Are there forms to complete?
Australian citizens, New Zealand citizens, Permanent Residents and Permanent Humanitarian visa holders are eligible for a Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP) in the first year of MRes. As a CSP candidate, you are liable for a portion of the total cost of your tuition, with the Commonwealth Government funding the University the balance of that total cost.
You must complete an eCAF (online Commonwealth Assistance Form). This is your agreement to pay the candidate contribution amount, either via an up-front payment with discount via a HECS-HELP (you must supply your Tax File Number), or in full (if you are not eligible for discount or HECS-HELP).
When and how do I submit an eCAF?
All eCAFs must be submitted before enrolment. Instructions on how to complete the eCAF can be found at How to Complete eCAF.
I am an international candidate, do I need to complete an eCAF?
No, international candidates are not required to complete an eCAF.
Can I apply for HECS-HELP for the candidate fee contribution?
HECS-HELP is a loan to assist eligible fee paying domestic candidates pay their tuition fees. Australian citizens and permanent humanitarian visa holders are eligible for HECS-HELP assistance and can pay their tuition fee in one of three ways: full up-front payment, partial up-front payment and obtain a FEE-HELP loan for the remainder; or obtain a HECS-HELP loan for the full amount. Please check current guidelines at the HECS-HELP website.
Do I need to pay the Student Services and Amenities fee?
Domestic candidates will need to pay the Student Services and Amenities fee in the first year of the MRes program. International candidates do not need to pay this fee.
Can I defer the payment for my Student Services and Amenities fee?
Domestic candidates who do not wish to pay the fee upfront to the University may defer the fee through SA-HELP assistance to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).
To defer the SSAF, eligible candidates must complete a separate 'Request for SA-HELP Assistance' form by the relevant census date. A HECS-HELP or FEE-HELP form does not cover the deferral of the SSAF.
What is a census date?
A census date is the deadline by which units can be added or withdrawn from without financial or academic penalty.
What is the census date for the MRes program?
In 2017, the census dates for BPhil/MRes Year 1 are 26 March for Session 1 and 26 August for Session 2.
Candidates may withdraw units up until these census date without financial or academic penalty.
Census dates may change each year and candidates are required to check the University website for the census dates.
Census dates for Year 2 are 7 February for Enrolment Period 1 and 7 August for Enrolment Period 2. Candidates are enrolled in a time-based unit in Year 2, and these census dates are the deadlines for changes to study load (full-time to part-time and vice versa), changes to liability status (from international to domestic) etc. Withdrawal from the time-based unit can occur any time of the year but total load (EFTSL - equivalent full-time study load) will be calculated to the date of withdrawal. Fees will be calculated to the date of withdrawal for international candidates on a pro-rata basis. Any EFTSL consumed will be counted if the candidate wishes to return to study in any research program in the future.
Are there any stipends or scholarships available for this program?
All full time domestic candidates entering the BPhil/MRes program in Year 1 receive a scholarship stipend in Session 1 of $4,000, paid as a single payment after the census date. To receive a scholarship stipend payment of $4,000 in Session 2, candidates require a weighted average of 65% or above at the end of Session 1. The second payment is made after the census date for Session 2.
From 2016, Macquarie offers a significant number of scholarships at the Government's Research Training Program (RTP) rate for domestic candidates progressing to Year 2 of the MRes program. These scholarships will be awarded based on their weighted average from Year 1 and competitive ranking. Details about MRes scholarships for Year 2 can be found on the Scholarships page.
Scholarship opportunities currently available to international students applying for admission into Year 1 or Year 2 of the MRes program are limited to co-funded scholarships with overseas countries. These scholarships are offered by overseas governments to their nationals.
The University also offers a limited number of scholarships to international MRes candidates applying for an MRes/PhD 'bundle' (i.e. MRes Year 2 and 3-year PhD) through the competitive IRTP (International Research Training Program Scholarship) round each year. To be considered for the 'bundle package', applicants will need to apply for an HDR application via eApplication.
I have been admitted directly into Year 2 of the MRes program. Am I eligible for a scholarship?
Macquarie offers a significant number of stipend scholarships to domestic candidates. These are based on academic merit and paid at the same rate as the Research Training Program (RTP) PhD stipend ($26,682 per annum in 2017 tax free).
For new commencing international candidates, a number of international stipends are offered as a bundle package through the IRTP Scholarship round or through co-funded scholarships with overseas countries. These are determined by assessment based on academic merit and competitive ranking.
I plan to study part-time. Will I be eligible for the stipend or scholarship?
No, part time candidates are not eligible for MRes stipend/scholarship payments.
Is my stipend taxable?
Questions regarding your personal tax situation are generally unique and should be directed to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).
The income from some scholarships may also be taken into account by the ATO to calculate certain income support or other Commonwealth payments, so you are urged to seek independent advice regarding your particular situation.
You may like to refer to the ATO scholarship calculation tool to assist you in determining your situation.
Will I be eligible for Austudy or Youth Allowance?
For domestic candidates, the Bachelor of Philosophy is an approved course for the purposes of candidate income support. Candidates may be eligible for candidate income support payments such as Youth Allowance or Austudy, provided all other qualifications are met. Please contact Centrelink directly for further information.
Year two and completion
Will I have to reapply for admission into Year 2?
Any BPhil/MRes and MRes candidate who passes all units in the first year of the MRes program will be eligible to continue to Year 2. You will not need to reapply for admission into Year 2, however you will be required to complete an enrolment form and the Assignment of the Intellectual Property Statement for Year 2.
What will I be studying in Year 2 of the Program?
Year 2 of the MRes program is designed to provide candidates with the best possible preparation for the PhD. Candidates will receive training in research planning, disciplinary-specific research methodologies and project management. They will develop plans for a major research project, surveying background literature both in their sub-disciplinary field and the more specific topic area that is their particular passion. They will also conduct a research project.
The Year 2 program is based around five core activities:
- Research Frontiers 2
- Literature Review
- Research Methods
- Research Planning
- Thesis (20,000 words) based on a small research project
Since research varies in different fields, each department has a program based on its own practices and style.
How many words are required for the Year 2 research project?
Candidates in Year 2 of the MRes will complete a research project of approximately 20,000 words in length.
When will my thesis be due?
Candidates who commenced the MRes Year 2 on the 1 January must submit their thesis by 5pm on the 9 October. Candidates who commenced the MRes Year 2 on the 1 July must submit their thesis by 5pm on the 24 April.
Progression to PhD
What is the minimum grade required to progress from the MRes program into a PhD?
Candidates who obtain a final mark of 75% or above in Year 2 of the MRes may be offered provisional admission into the Doctor of Philosophy. Final approval for admission to the PhD will depend on the quality of your PhD research proposal, the availability of supervision and the examiners reports of your MRes thesis.
What if I don't pass with a high enough average in the MRes to gain admission to PhD?
You may be considered for admission to Master of Philosophy (MPhil) provided you have attained a final mark of 65% or above in Year 2 of the MRes. Final approval for admission to the MPhil will depend on the quality of your PhD research proposal, the availability of supervision and the examiners reports of your MRes thesis.