Doctor of Philosophy
PhD candidates are required to make a significant and original contribution to a discipline or profession by submitting one of the following, equivalent to 70,000 – 100,000 words:
- a written research thesis
- a written research thesis including associated papers
- an artefact, such as a creative work or design product, with an accompanying exegesis (critical explanation).
A PhD candidate is expected to:
- conduct independent research of high originality and quality
- independently conceive of, design, conduct and complete a research project or program
- develop a critical knowledge and understanding of the research area and methodological approaches
- communicate convincingly with clarity and relevance to appropriate audiences.
For fees and duration please click here
You must have completed at least four years (or equivalent) of tertiary education studies in a relevant discipline at a high level of achievement, and must have been approved for the award of the degree(s) for which you studied.
A high level of achievement is defined as the equivalent of a four year Swinburne Honours degree that includes a significant research component in the fourth year, leading to an Honours degree class 1 (average grade between 80-100) or class 2A (average grade between 70-79) level.
Four years of tertiary studies can be demonstrated by the completion of any of the combinations of qualifications below, at the required standard of achievement:
- a Bachelor’s degree (three or four years) and a Masters by Research; or
- a Bachelor’s degree (three or four years) and an Honours year; or
- a Bachelor’s degree (three or four years) and a Masters by Coursework; or
- a Bachelor’s degree (four years) in an approved discipline.
You will also need to check the specific entry requirements for your program.
In addition, you must reach the required standards of achievement based on any prior qualifications and research experience.
English language requirements
Candidates must meet one of the following requirements:
- obtain a minimum IELTS overall band of 6.5 (Academic Module) with no individual band below 6.0 or a TOEFL iBT (Internet-based) minimum score of 79 (with a reading band no less than 18 and writing band no less than 20); or Pearson (PTE) 58 (no communicative skills less than 50) no longer than 24 months before submitting your application
- successfully complete a total of 24 months (full time equivalent) of formal study where the language of instruction and assessment was English at AQF level 7 or above (or equivalent) at an approved university no longer than 60 months before submitting your application.
Available PhD Projects
Swinburne Sarawak also offers specific PhDs which are aligned with existing research projects.
Using smart technology to augment orientation and mobility for people with low vision or blindness
A PhD candidate with the background of orientation and mobility, robotics and mechatronics, digital media design or computer science. This research will investigate aids and assistive technology currently used by people with low vision or blindness to understand what purposes they serve in supporting O&M. Then the study will explore available technologies that might be used or combined to augment available mobility systems. In this study, smart-tech designed to support O&M will take into consideration:
• the expressed needs and ideas of the intended user group (e.g., people who need a primary mobility aid, or people who have pervasive orientation problems
• awareness of the environmental, social and information barriers that non-visual travellers encounter, that can limit their life-space and freedom of movement
• feasibility issues such as cost, weight, battery life, ergonomics, aesthetics and reliability of satellite signals
This project is sponsored via the Swinburne Melbourne Sarawak Research Collaboration Scheme. The student will be jointly supervised by supervisors in Sarawak and Hawthorn. He or she will be based in Kuching, Sarawak, but the candidate should be willing to travel to Melbourne, when the project requires it. Successful applicant will receive a PhD scholarship consists of monthly stipend (36 months) and full fees waiver.
For more information please contact Assoc. Prof. Lau Bee Theng
Production design process study for high performance superbattery manufacturing
A PhD student with a device physics/materials/renewable energy background is sought for this project to conduct both experimental study and simulations on the upscaled superbatteries. Through investigating the key physical/chemical parameters affecting the device performance, the student will develop a set of sound procedure to maintain the high performance at a large scale. At the end of the PhD, the student is expected to develop competent skillsets on device fabrication, optimisation and characterisation. This will help him/her to be sought by both academic groups and industry R&D battery labs.
This project is sponsored via the Swinburne Melbourne Sarawak Research Collaboration Scheme. The student will be jointly supervised by supervisors in Sarawak and Hawthorn He or she will be based in Kuching, Sarawak, but the candidate should be willing to travel to Melbourne, when the project requires it.
For more information please contact Assoc. Prof. Basil T. Wong
Pilot scale automation design for high precision and large throughput superbattery manufacturing
A PhD student with robotics and automation background is sought for this project to design automation process and assemble the automation facility to realise nanometer to micrometer precision of the device assemble and simultaneously high throughput to maintain the low cost nature. At the end of the PhD, the student is expected to develop competent skillsets on industrial design, automation, high precision fabrication and advanced manufacturing, which will be highly sought by many industry sectors, including the semiconductor, renewable energy and electronics.
This project is sponsored via the Swinburne Melbourne Sarawak Research Collaboration Scheme. The student will be jointly supervised by supervisors in Sarawak and Hawthorn. He or she will be based in Kuching, Sarawak, but the candidate should be willing to travel to Melbourne, when the project requires it.
For more information please contact Assoc. Prof. Basil T. Wong
Academia as second career for industry experts and professionals
Academia has been an alternative viable career path for seasoned experts and professional in industry. The term second-career academic was put forward by LaRocco and Bruns’s (2006) to describe business executive who choose academia as second career. My PhD has focused on the re-entry experience of these second-career academics. However, there is much to be researched on the topic. For example, my research has not uncovered the motivation, perception and inclination towards a career in academia. Further giving that second career academics has been in industry for considerable time, therefore their decision to shift from industry to academia is not likely to be taken lightly. Such decision to shift from industry to academia necessitate executive decision making.
Simon (1976) appears to have initiated an important strand of literature on executive decision making. His study of decision making by business practitioners to become academics in business schools shows that the decision is influenced by the duration of experience in the business world. Simon’s seminal study on business practitioners’ decision to become academics suggests that only those with limited business world experience are likely to be successful and remain as academics. However, since 1976, business education has evolved much particularly on relevant to business (Antunes & Thomas, 2007; Clinebell & Clinebell, 2008; Engwall, 2007; Harrington & Kearney, 2011). This evolution of business education creates the need for academics with professional and industry experiences to join academia (Boyle, Carpenter, & Hermanson 2015; Trapnell, Mero, Williams, & Krull, 2009, pp. 428-429).
For more information please contact Dr. Ong Liap Teck
An investigation of the sustainability practices of organisations in Sarawak
This PhD will be part of a project that seeks to investigate the sustainability approaches being adopted by large organisations operating in Sarawak. Sarawak aims to be a developed state by the year 2020, focusing on sound strategic socio-economic planning to address the rural-urban gap and achieving development without overlooking the impacts of human activity (Sarawak State Planning Unit, 2015). Of particular importance to Sarawak is transforming their economic development through sustainably engaging with their natural resources. This has seen a number of initiatives being adopted in the extractive industries to help realise this objective. The Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE) scheme, for example, is being driven through the Government of Sarawak to facilitate the transformation of their energy consumption into renewable energies. This includes engagement with very large public and private sector organisations to actively utilise their resources to achieve this vision through the development of clean and renewable energy.
This PhD will be structured into the broader project, adopting a similar structure and approach to the research, with a supportive supervision team to guide the potential PhD student through their learning journey. As part of the broader project, this research will study some of the largest organisations operating within Sarawak. This will be done through a mixed method, qualitative approach, utilising semi-structured interviews and archival research to examine the sustainability approaches being utilised by these organisations.
For more information please contact Dr. Anjum Amin Chaudhry
Medical tourism in Sarawak
Medical tourism is a nascent phenomenon in the tourism space that represents a new market segment due to changing times and consumer perceptions (Yu & Ko, 2012). Researchers show that medical tourism is a combination of two things ‘medical services’ and the ‘tourism industry’ (Yu & Ko, 2012). As a result, central to that nexus is the attractiveness of both the medical provider and the country as a tourism destination (Fetscherin & Stephano, 2016). Extant literature also highlights the importance of (i) quality of medical facilities and services, (ii) reputation of doctors, word of mouth, among others as key determinants when choosing a health care facility (Fetscherin & Stephano, 2016). However, despite the continuing growth and size of the medical tourism, there is a significant lack of empirical insights on medical tourism.
In particular, prior research to date has focused on the push and pull factors for medical tourism (Fetscherin & Stephano, 2016), cross-cultural factors (Yu & Ko, 2012), and operational issues (Connell, 2013) among others, yet there is a dearth of research addressing key marketing constructs such as branding. Research attests that even from the organisations involved in medical tourism as well as tourist destination countries, marketing seem to be neglected and little is known about what influences the behaviour of medical tourists (Connell, 2013). Other researchers state that in the medical tourism context, less is known about the key strategic antecedents and its outcomes (Han & Hyun, 2015; Lee & Fernando, 2015). Additionally, this diverse, dynamic and multi-faceted industry presents a rich context for research given the emerging and evolving connections between medical tourism, national and local governments (in regulation, promotion, and branding of medical tourism), insurance companies and the tourism industry in general (Connell, 2013). The phenomenon is further fuelled by the parallel globalisation and corporatisation of health care, travel and tourism, thus taking a microscopic eye from a marketing lens will help uncover more insights as to the ‘why’ and ‘how’ of consumption of medical tourism services. This study aims to investigate these issues in the context of Sarawak which presents a unique situation due to its geographical location, proximity to major south east cities, low crime and relatively low cost of living.
For more information please contact Dr. Anjum Amin Chaudhry