Getting Started

For Postgraduate Research Students

Successful applicants will be sent either a conditional or unconditional an offer of admission. 

Conditional
If students have not yet fulfilled all requirements of admission, a conditional offer may be sent to them. Students who receive these are not able to accept, or receive a Confirmation of Enrolment (International students only), however, can defer or decline their offer by emailing the Research Student Unit.

Unconditional
Students with unconditional offers can accept, defer or decline their offer online by emailing the letter back to the Research Student Unit.

The offer letter will answer most questions that might arise. Please ensure that you read the offer letter in its entirety, before accepting the offer.

For International Students:

  • If you have applied for a UNSW scholarship, you may wait for the scholarship outcome before accepting the admission offer. You must complete the reply form of both the admission and scholarship offers to accept – please do not complete the online acceptance.
     
  • Once you have accepted the offer and either paid the deposit or submitted your sponsorship/scholarship information, it will take up to five working days to create and release your Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE). Once you receive this, you can apply for your visa.

Research Student Unit 
T: +61 2 5114 5000
E: rsu@adfa.edu.au
Location: Ground Floor, Adams Auditorium, Building 111

All candidates who have accepted their offer of admission into a research program at UNSW need to enrol before commencing study. After accepting your offer, you will be emailed further information on the enrolment procedure. It is your responsibility to ensure that you are enrolled at the start of every semester and that your enrolment is correct.

Full-time enrolment in a higher degree research program is on the basis of at least 35-40 hours per week, 48 weeks per year (candidates can take up to 4 weeks holiday)

Part-time enrolment in a higher degree research program is on the basis of at least 15-20 hours per week, 48 weeks per year (candidates can take up to 4 weeks holiday)

After you are enrolled you can collect your ID card and set up IT accounts through the IT Help Desk.

IT Help Desk General Enquiries:
T: + 61 2 5114 5678
E: helpdesk@adfa.edu.au

Attendance at the Postgraduate Research Course Induction is compulsory for all candidates commencing a Doctor of Philosophy, Professional Doctorate or Masters by Research degree.  The course ensures a smooth transition to research study at UNSW.

The event will provide new research candidates with important information on:

  • the Graduate Research School
  • enrolment, progression and scholarship administration
  • services provided across the University for research candidates

Attendees will also receive key publications at the event, including the Postgraduate Candidate Handbook and Essentials for Postgraduate Researchers. These publications provide a handy summary of documents needed throughout candidature including:

  • relevant guidelines, policies and procedures
  • advice and resources
  • useful contacts

Induction is offered in three terms (Term 1, Term 2, Term 3). 

At UNSW Canberra, your Student ID Card is also known as UNSW ID Card, ADFA Card, or simply ID Card. Students who are required to be on campus and access Library online resources should note that it is a condition of enrolment at UNSW Canberra that you obtain and retain a Student ID Card for the entirety of your study with UNSW Canberra. Failure to obtain a Student ID Card will severely limit your access to services. While on campus you should always display your Student ID Card.

Obtaining your Student ID Card in Person

Please visit the ICTS Helpdesk – located on the ground floor of Building 14 – with a valid form of photo ID (Driver’s license or passport)
ICTS Staff will take your photo and then print and activate the Student ID Card for UNSW Canberra building access.

If you are not located on campus and would like to order and receive your Student ID Card Via Mail

Please send an email from your UNSW Canberra Student email address to helpdesk@adfa.edu.au with the following information and attachments:

  • Student number
  • Mailing address
  • Copy of a valid photo ID (Driver’s License or Passport)
  • Passport size photo that meets the below requirements 

 Passport Size Photo Requirements:

The JPEG file that you submit to ICTS needs the following:

  • Dimension: Minimum specifications: 328 pixels wide x 370 pixels high in true colour.
  • Taken within the last 6 months to reflect your current appearance.
  • Taken in full-face view directly facing the camera with a neutral background.
  • You must be in appropriate clothing.
  1. Do not wear a hat or head covering that obscures the hair or hairline, unless worn daily for a religious purpose. Your full face must be visible, and the head covering must not cast any shadows on your face.
  2. Headphones, wireless hands-free devices, or similar items are not acceptable in your photo.
  3. If you normally wear prescription glasses, a hearing device, or similar articles, they may be worn for your photo.
  4. Dark glasses or non-prescription glasses with tinted lenses are not acceptable. 

In all instances your Student ID Card will be mailed to you unless you advise the ICTS Helpdesk that you wish to collect it in person on campus.

Note:

Undergraduate and Postgraduate Coursework: A Student ID Card can only be printed if you are enrolled in at least one subject in the current semester and cannot be printed more than 4 weeks prior to that semester commencing.

Postgrad Research: A Student ID Card can only be printed if you are enrolled in the current term and cannot be printed more than 6 weeks prior to that term commencing.

We offer a range of services aimed at helping you make the most of student life. From practical help and study advice to counselling and physical wellbeing, our useful student resources will help you get the most out of your university experience.

Explore our Student Support Services

The Graduate Research School (GRS) is the central administration and support unit for all higher degree research candidates at UNSW. The GRS provides a range of resources designed to help you navigate your way through your higher degree research program. 

The GRS provides access to: 

  • Resources to help you manage your candidature and thesis submission, including policies and support 
  • Resources to support your wellbeing for the duration of your research study including access to counselling, tips, and strategies for making the most out of your HDR experience and advice on managing common challenges encountered throughout your candidature.   
  • Key dates for admissions, scholarships, and enrolment 
  • Key contacts and where to find advice during your candidature.  

To find out more visit the Graduate Research School website.

Planning your Arrival & Commencing Your Studies

Now that you're on your way to studying at UNSW, there is a lot to think about before you arrive. Here you will find information and services available to you that will help make your transition easier.

From the moment you arrive, we want you to feel welcome. The Research Student Unit (SAS), support staff and your School will welcome you to campus and give you helpful information about settling into UNSW Canberra.

Living in Canberra

Canberra is the national capital of Australia, a multicultural city and the seat of the national government.  It is a 3-hour drive from Sydney and a 2-hour drive from the snow and the coast.  It is consistently rated as one of the world’s top city to live by the OECD, to study by QS Best Student Cities and to travel by Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel ratings.

Canberra is a modern and connected city offering big city amenities without the traffic, congestion or pollution. The median age is well below that of Australia in general providing an opportunity to connect with like-minded peers from all over the world. Higher than national average education levels means that students in Canberra are part of a community that encourages you to learn and further your knowledge.

Spend your free time exploring the wide-open spaces and natural surrounds of Canberra. Engage in social events such as sports, concerts and festivals. Enjoy unique access to major exhibitions and take the opportunity to learn and engage with Australia's story, both past and present. Visit the national cultural institutions such as the National Gallery of Australia, the Australian War Memorial, the National Museum of Australia and the National Library of Australia. For more information see Visit Canberra and Study Canberra,

The cost of living in Canberra will vary according to your personal lifestyle preferences. You should research these costs before you commit to ensuring you have funding to meet these requirements. For international students please refer to 'Estimated Cost of Living in Canberra'

You'll need the capacity to cover the costs of airfares, tuition fees and living costs for the duration of your stay. The Australian Government requires that you have sufficient funds while studying in Australia which will cover accommodation, food, transport, clothing, fuel, power, telephone and entertainment.

Housing & Accommodation

UNSW Canberra is located in the Canberra suburb of Campbell, near the Airport and on the Northside in Central Canberra. There is no accommodation on campus for non-Defence students; however, depending on your personal taste, budget, location and the length of your stay there are a number of accommodation options. Many students choose to live off-campus in a unit, townhouse or a house and will usually share the costs with other students. You will often find advertisements for rooms within share accommodation on university noticeboards and online. If you have the budget you may wish to rent your own place.

For more information refer to Accommodation and Transport information for new students.

Arc Canberra has useful information for student support and legal advice regarding accommodation, your rights and obligations.

Student Visas

International students studying at UNSW require a Confirmation of Enrolment from UNSW to enable them to apply for a student visa for the length of their program. Intenational students are also required to have Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) for the entire duration of their stay in Australia.  Australia's laws promote quality education and consumer protection for overseas students.  These laws include the Education Services for Oversaes Students (ESOS) Act.

For more information refer to: