UNSW Art & Design

Postgraduate Research Degrees

Postgraduate research at UNSW Art & Design is at the forefront of contemporary and experimental art, media and design. We encourage interdisciplinary experimentation and offer wide-ranging opportunities for significant research encompassing practice-based and theoretical areas of inquiry. 

Our faculty research community features internationally recognised strengths in media arts, immersive interactivity, art and ecology, creative robotics, art and society, curating and cultural leadership.  Supervision is provided by research leaders in each of these fields.

UNSW Art & Design supports postgraduate research through a dynamic program of events, and through dedicated series of postgraduate seminars. Research degrees may be supplemented by coursework. All of our programs can be undertaken through practice-based, hybrid or written-studies-only approaches.

Masters by Research

A Masters by Research degree requires completion of research that demonstrates mastery and excellence in a project or across fields. Candidates work with a supervisor to develop an independent practice-based or written research project in art, media and/or design fields. Masters by Research candidature is supported through access to dedicated postgraduate spaces and Faculty-wide postgraduate research culture and events.

Masters by Research programs run for 2 years full-time. More information.

Masters of Philosophy by Research

A Masters of Philosophy (MPhil) provides a pathway into further research studies and/or retraining in new research fields for the candidate.

Candidates work with a supervisor – usually a research leader in the specific  field – to shape their research question, proposition and approach. Candidates also undertake a suite of coursework that supports their research training and integrate with their research project. MPhil candidates are also supported through access to dedicated postgraduate spaces and to Faculty-wide postgraduate research programs and events.

The minimum length of candidature is 1 year and the maximum length is 2 years. More information.

PhD Research 

PhD researchers are required to make an original contribution to art, design and media knowledge via practice and/or written thesis. Candidates work with a supervisor –a research leader in the specific research field – to shape their research question, proposition and approach. PhD research is supported by courses run by UNSW Art & Design on research foundations in experimental art, media and design, by postgraduate research laboratory spaces and by a lively, rigorous and engaged staff and student research culture.

Entry to a PhD at UNSW Art & Design requires a first class honors degree or equivalent, for example, a prior Masters by Research degree with equivalent grading or Faculty-evaluated professional experience. 

We encourage proposals for trans-disciplinary research in all areas of practice and theory aligned with the Faculty’s research strengths of media and innovation, environment and sustainability, art and social practice, including visual anthropology, and curatorial leadership.

PhD candidature is for a maximum of 4 years fulltime, 6 years part-time. More information.


For more information on our Postgraduate Research degrees, please phone +61 2 8936 0684 or Email us


2016 Postgraduate Prospectus


Scholarships & Prizes


How to Apply