Melbourne Research Experience Survey

2019 MRES now open

Every two years we ask you for feedback on your research experience. The information you provide helps us identify areas of good performance and areas for improvement.

Take part and have your say

If you are a current graduate researcher who was enrolled during 2018, you will receive an email containing a link to the survey. Simply use the survey link to provide your feedback. The survey will take you about 15-20 minutes to complete. Those who complete the survey by 18 August 2019 will be entered into a draw to win one $500 or one of five $100 Woolworths Wish gift cards.

You will be asked about your experience of supervision, the resources and support available to you.

You will also have the opportunity to provide general comments about your graduate research experience.

Reporting from the MRES

Outcomes will be reported by faculty, and where appropriate by department or school. Results are not presented where there are fewer than five responses. More comprehensive reports of students’ views on supervision and support will be compiled and submitted to faculty leadership through the Committee of Graduate Research Associate Deans; to Academic Board through the Higher Degrees by Research Committee and senior management.

You Said, We listened

key initatives undertaken by your faculty/graduate school since the 2017 survey.

  • Faculty of Arts
    • Continued to increase access to a sole-use desk for full time graduate researchers
    • Introduced the Faculty milestones requirements and the ArtsEdit workshop to ensure graduate researchers are making timely preparations for completion
    • Improved onboarding experience including detailed school induction and bringing forward the Intensive Research Workshop to support graduate researchers in making a good start
    • Improved consultation process to identify areas of improvement
    • Established Arts Graduate Research International Grant (AGRIG) to support overseas research essential to the completion of the thesis
  • Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning
    • Continued to support our graduate researchers’ academic and professional development through research methods workshops, thesis boot camp and other development courses. Courses on mental health, public access and research dissemination and seminars by the Thesis Whisperer are planned for 2019
    • Provided the ABP Research Students Association leaders with better support through monthly meetings and a more generous budget to seed student-led initiatives
    • Improved our consultation with graduate researchers through their representation at the Faculty’s inaugural Research Leadership ‘think tank’; focus groups and interviews for the Faculty’s external Research Review; and representation on our space audit working group to enhance their office space
    • Implemented new strategic and diversity scholarships
    • Continued our focus on high-quality support services and the availability of administrative and pastoral advice for graduate researchers and their supervisors
  • Faculty of Business and Economics
    • Successfully re-designed the Doctoral programs in Management and Marketing to increase duration to five years (two years of masters coursework followed by three years of research)
    • Introduced a ‘History of Business and Economics at Melbourne’ presentation at Orientation to build University of Melbourne connections for incoming students;
    • Introduced the Acknowledgement of Country and promotion of the Billibellary’s Walk as part of the Faculty’s Orientation program to begin to embed awareness of and pay respect to Indigenous culture and heritage in the UoM physical landscape
    • Developed and launched the first FBE PhD alumni newsletter as part of our efforts to create an engaged, supportive FBE doctoral alumni network
    • Continues to support a growing raft of annual skills development workshops and social events devised in conjunction with the FBE PhD Student Society focusing on areas such as Job Market Interview Preparation, Thesis Boot Camps, Presentation Skills and Mental Health and Wellbeing
    • Continues to provide generous scholarship and travel funding to students, including a $30 000 stipend to all successful applicants and a $10 000 travel fund for PhD research-related travel
    • Improved Faculty graduate research administrative service and support through the creation of additional positions that have allowed the Faculty cultivate a welcoming, caring and supportive community for graduate researchers from commencement through to the post-completion period and begin to address course experience and academic outcomes in more substantial and resonant ways
  • Faculty of Engineering
    • Created more scholarship opportunities for graduate researchers
    • Removed compulsory coursework components for commencements from 1 January 2019 onwards to facilitate a tailored approach to allocating coursework subjects
    • Included the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research 2018 in induction sessions to guide graduate researchers in the expectation for research to be conducted responsibly, ethically and with integrity
    • Improved the range of enrichment events which span the entire candidature, including an end of year celebration to bring together candidates from across the disciplines and year levels
  • Faculty of Fine Arts and Music
    • Three new performance spaces in the new Ian Potter Southbank centre for Music students
    • The stables fully renovated providing art studios for students in the School of Art
    • Competitive Small Grants Scheme replaced with a fund where all research students can access up to $3000 (PhD) or $1500 (Masters) to support their research
    • New library combining the Lenton Parr and Elizabeth Hanson Dyer libraries at Southbank
    • Access to study space in the Conservatorium building on Royal Parade at Parkville
    • Production support for recording Performances in Music
    • Simplifying the research degrees offered to make administration simpler and less intrusive for students and staff
    • Expansion of the Academic Assistantships offering more research students the ability to gain experience working in academic roles
  • Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences
    • Introduced seven thematic PhD Programs within the Faculty to enhance the graduate research experience and career outcomes
    • Conducted advisory chair induction sessions focusing on supervisor and graduate researcher wellbeing
    • Empowered advisory committee chairs to help graduate researchers finish their program in a timely manner
    • Formalised pre-confirmation reviews of candidature for recently enrolled graduate researchers to meet with their advisory committee chair and principal supervisor to discuss their research project aims and plan, and to raise any issues separately with the chair
    • Continuously improving communications with graduate researchers and supervisors within the Faculty and working with graduate researchers to improve the student experience.
  • Faculty of Science
    • Established a monthly Faculty of Science graduate researcher newsletter to facilitate better communication of new opportunities
    • Hosting bi-annual thesis boot camps to support graduate researchers to completion
    • Introducing Job Ready PhD boot camp to prepare graduate researchers for careers post-submission
    • Commenced, in 2018, an annual Faculty of Science three-minute thesis competition
    • In 2018 made it a requirement that each graduate researcher has at least two supervisors and in 2019 introduced Faculty of Science committee chair training to ensure greater candidature support
    • Established a Specialist Certificate in Research Practice for Scientists to support graduate researcher professional development, via industry internships
    • Instigating graduate researcher bi-annual feedback sessions to the Associate Dean (Graduate Programs)
  • Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences
    • Introduced a Postgraduate Support Fund for PhD students: $3000 per annum is provided from years 1 to 3 for research costs
    • Developed a weekly confirmation and completion seminar series
    • Held a focus group seeking graduate researchers’ perspectives on the Faculty’s management of pre-enrolment and student induction
    • Invited participation of third year graduate researchers and early career researchers at student induction events
    • Encouraged participation of graduate researchers at the annual FVAS Research Week including presentations of posters and oral presentations through to seminars and workshops
  • Melbourne Graduate School of Education
    • Providing guaranteed $1000 travel funding per year to support career development by facilitating opportunities to present at domestic and international conferences and/or conduct research fieldwork in Australia and/or overseas
    • Established post thesis grants to support recent graduate research graduates to convert their thesis into publications
    • Continued to host regular events to bring together graduate researchers and supervisors in social settings
    • Providing high quality support services and the availability of administrative pastoral advice.
    • Continued to promote excellence by recognising and celebrating outstanding theses and graduate research supervision.
    • Plan to develop best practice guidelines for supervisors and advisory committee chairs and introduce training in the use of these guidelines
    • Plan to develop a blended ethics module to be linked to confirmation requirements
  • Melbourne Law School
    • Held a thesis bootcamp for third- and fourth-year graduate researchers, to be repeated annually
    • Provided up to $1000 towards proofreading for each graduate researcher whose first language is not English
    • Provided commencing graduate researchers with a laptop
    • Held fortnightly ‘Shut Up and Write’ sessions, facilitated by the Law Early Career Researcher Network
    • Scheduled one-on-one Law Library research consultations for commencing graduate researchers
    • Sent monthly Graduate Researcher Update emails tailored specifically to the Law cohort

Useful links

Further information

Bill Jones (Business Intelligence and Reporting)
Amanda Davis (Chancellery Research and Enterprise)