If you want to shape education policy or influence teaching methods, our PhD in Education will help you achieve your goals. We offer invaluable research opportunities and industry contacts.
Our Doctoral Degree in Education program
In our PhD in Education you’ll conduct high-level, original research grounded in industry experience.
We offer collaborations with community organisations and international research partners. You’ll have access to our specialised research centres, undertaking important projects for teachers, communities and policy makers.
Throughout your study, you’ll have the support of a supervisor experienced in education research. You’ll be taught best-practice research methods, then begin a PhD thesis in your chosen area. We’ll help you to present your findings clearly and effectively, through:
- public presentations for broader audiences
- international publications.
When you undertake a doctoral degree in education at VU, you’ll specialise in one of our areas of research focus. These are supported by expertise from the University, research partners, institutes and research centres.
We are committed to undertaking high-impact research that shapes healthier, smarter and more sustainable communities across six interdisciplinary areas of research focus.
Our education research benefits the whole community, through programs that work towards social transformation and inclusion through policy and practice. You’ll take part in collaborative research that creates new knowledge in local and international education communities.
Our education researchers are renowned for research excellence. You’ll have access to progressive thinkers, excellent facilities, and award-winning academics.
We cover more than just the school system, focusing our applied research on:
- early childhood
- curriculum and pedagogy as complex conversations
- learning in, through and beyond the workplace
- teacher education for diversity
- youth work.
While studying towards your PhD, you’ll have access to our research centres and institutes. These focus on real projects for the education sector, with outcomes that affect policy and practice.
VU centres that conduct education research include:
- Centre for International Research on Education Systems (CIRES): research into improving educational outcomes
- Mitchell Institute for Health and Education Policy: creating educational policy solutions that work for everyone in Australia.
VU collaborates with renowned universities and institutes, giving you access to world-class education researchers and research opportunities. These include:
- Hong Kong Institute of Education
- National Centre for Vocational Education Research
- Parkville Youth Justice Precinct
- University of Texas (El Paso), USA
- Victorian Department of Education and Training.
VU Research gives you opportunities to:
- connect with other researchers
- participate in research festivals and competitions
- develop your research skills
- get funding for your research
- publish and promote your findings.
We offer support for graduate researchers including:
- an orientation program
- a specialised Office for Researcher Training, Quality & Integrity
- study spaces
- units to help you conceptualise and contextualise your research
- research ambassadors and student association.
Find out more about graduate opportunities at VU.
Work within a friendly and supportive community of education researchers.
Learn from other researchers and education experts at VU symposiums
Careers in education research, policy and management
Postgraduate study is increasingly important in advancing your education career. This course could lead to a career as one of the following:
- education professional in schools or other settings
- manager in specialist education
- policy maker or developer
- workplace trainer.
The following are average salaries from the government site, Job Outlook:
The PhD is a research based degree with a maximum duration of 4 years (full time) and 8 years (part time).
As well as enrolling in Research Thesis units Doctor of Philosophy (Science) students will be required to complete two coursework units, ROP8001 and ROP8002.
An average result of 70% is required in the compulsory coursework units in order to proceed to candidature confirmation. Ongoing progression is subject to policy and procedures for candidature management as per the VU HDR Policy.
On successful completion of this course, students will be able to:
|1.||expert understanding of a substantial body of theory and its practical application at the frontier of a field of work or learning, including substantial expert knowledge of ethical research principles and methods applicable to the field.|
|2.||intellectual independence and cognitive skills to undertake a systematic investigation, reflect critically on theory and practice and evaluate existing knowledge and ideas, including identifying, evaluating and critically analysing the validity of research studies and their applicability to a research problem.|
|3.||expert cognitive, technical and creative skills to: design, develop and implement a research project/s to systematically investigate a research problem; develop, adapt and implement research methodologies to extend and redefine existing knowledge; manage, analyse, evaluate and interpret data, synthesising key ideas and theorising within the context of key literature.|
|4.||expert communication skills to explain and critique theoretical propositions, methodologies and conclusions; to disseminate and promote new insights; and to cogently present a complex investigation of originality, or original research, both for external examination and to specialist (eg researcher peers) and non-specialist (industry and/or community) audiences through informal interaction, scholarly publications, reports and formal presentations.|
|5.||capacity to reflect on, develop and evaluate strategies for achieving their own learning and career goals.|
|6.||intellectual independence, initiative and creativity in new situations and/or for further learning.|
|7.||ethical practice and full responsibility and accountability for personal outputs.|
|8.||autonomy, authoritative judgement, adaptability and responsibility as an expert and independent scholar.|
What's a unit?
A unit or 'subject' is the actual class you'll attend in the process of completing a course.
Most courses have a mixture of compulsory 'core' units that you need to take, and optional \'elective\' units that you can choose to take based on your area of interest, expertise or experience.
Each unit is worth a set amount of study credits based on the amount of time you study. Generally, 1 credit is equal to 1 hour of study per week.
Admission & pathways
Meeting the minimum admission requirements does not guarantee you entry into this course.
Some courses receive more applications than the number of places available. In this situation we will also assess your education, work and other relevant experience.
- Bachelor/Honours degree: Completed a relevant Masters degree or four year undergraduate degree with Honours or its equivalent at a high standard.
If you have completed study with another university or institution and believe you are eligible to receive credit for skills and past study, you can apply for advanced standing.
Applications for advanced standing can be made after a discussion with your course coordinator or academic adviser.