The Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning places a high emphasis on its research activities. The degree of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) may be undertaken across the faculty’s active research areas: Architecture, Architectural and Design Science, the Design Lab, and Urban and Regional Planning. The University of Sydney and the school itself enjoy strong research links with key institutions throughout Asia, Europe, Scandinavia and North America. The PhD in Architecture, Design and Planning comprises research and writing toward a thesis of 50,000 to 80,000 words. Some coursework may be required or undertaken as elective units of study, but in no case is it a significant component of award requirements for the degree.
You can undertake a research degree – the Master of Philosophy (MPhil) or Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) – in any of our research areas:
-architecture history and theory
1. Find a supervisor within the University whose academic background aligns with your research. You may visit Research Supervisor Connect to start.
2. Contact a research supervisor either through Research Supervisor Connect or email and provide: your academic/educational background and research experience with examples such as an academic transcript your CV/resume the area of interest for your PhD why you believe your research topics align with this supervisor
3. In conjunction with your supervisor, develop a preliminary research proposal of at least 500 words that outlines the subject area, objectives and significance of your research. See our research proposal outline.
4. International applicants need to obtain two academic referee reports, each one written by a referee who is familiar with your previous academic achievements. Referee reports should be supplied on our template.
5. If you intend to study part-time towards a PhD, you will also need to supply: evidence that shows you will have sufficient time available to plan and carry out the research under the supervision of the University, and complete the course within the maximum period allowed for a part-time PhD enrolment a declaration from your employer (if relevant) confirming that you will be permitted to take the time required to effectively pursue your studies.
6. Your research proposal should be submitted along with your CV, academic referee reports, academic transcripts and other supporting documents.
7. Applications are made via the University’s online application portal. When you are ready to apply, select the `Apply Now’ button on the right hand side.
To be eligible for admission to the Doctor of Philosophy (Architecture), you must have completed the equivalent of one of the following in a subject area related to your proposed research area: bachelor’s degree with first class or second class honours or, master’s degree by research or, master’s degree by coursework with an independent research component such as a thesis, dissertation or research project with a minimum overall credit average. Applicants who do not meet these admission requirements may be issued an offer of a place to the Master of Philosophy (Architecture).
Outstanding candidates who successfully complete up to one year full-time or equivalent part-time of the University of Sydney Master of Philosophy (Architecture) may apply for transfer into the Doctor of Philosophy (Architecture) and be granted credit for work already completed: with approval from the supervisor and school meeting all higher degree by research progression requirements providing evidence that their research is of a sufficient scope and depth to sustain a doctoral thesis.
See Master of Philosophy (Architecture) progression and completion requirements.