• Submit an expression of interest (EOI)

    Step 1

    This is done online and take at least 25 minutes. More information on the EOI process is available on this page.

  • Discuss topics and supervisors

    Step 2

    Following the EOI deadline, there is a short period of a few weeks where a short list of applicants can discuss projects and positions with potential supervisors.

  • Attend an interview

    Step 3

    This is usually short and can be conducted either in person, via zoom or by phone with a panel of CAS staff members.

  • Submit formal application

    Step 4

    Swinburne takes into account the strength of application and the preferences of each student and supervisor.

Are you from Australia or New Zealand?

Australian and New Zealand citizens and Australian permanent residents are encouraged to consider applying for Research Training Postgraduate Stipend (RTPS) funding. We strongly encourag you to submit an expression of interest.


The eligibility requirements for undertaking a PhD at CAS are detailed in Swinburne Research's Research Higher Degrees Policy and Procedure document. In summary, PhD applicants must have completed at least four years (or part-time equivalent) of university studies, at a high level of achievement, in a subject area related to their proposed PhD project.

For most CAS PhD applicants, this translates to having completed a bachelor of science degree with first or upper second class honours or a master degree (with a research component) awarded at a similarly high grade. 

English language requirement 

There are English language requirements for international students. If English is not one of your native languages, then at least 24 full months (or part-time equivalent) of your formal university studies must have had English as the language of instruction and assessment. Otherwise, you must submit the results of an English language examination with any formal PhD scholarship application.  

If you are relying on a language exam to certify your English language skills, then your exam results must have been issued no more than two years prior to your Swinburne application. You do not necessarily have to take the exams before submitting an EoI, but you will not receive a formal offer from Swinburne unless or until you can satisfy the English language requirements. 

All international applicants should be sure to check the latest Swinburne IELTS and TOEFL score requirements

Note: International students must study full time.


A PhD is a significant commitment of 3.5 years (full-time equivalent) research. Students normally study during their PhD full-time. International students must study full-time.  

Given the rigorous nature of the research, students should avoid working outside of their study. For this reason, CAS normally only accepts PhD students who obtain a scholarship at Swinburne.  

Although Swinburne has, by comparison with other Australian universities, a relatively large number of scholarships available, including ones for international students, they are all very competitive. Given the significant amount of work required from both applicants and supervisors to submit a formal PhD and scholarship application, CAS assesses the EOIs of potential applicants first. An EOI must be submitted if we are to fairly assess you as a possible formal PhD and scholarship applicant. 


The information provided in the EOIs enables us to: 

  • fairly and accurately compare the grades and academic backgrounds of all students, as well as take into account additional information contained in curriculum vitae and reference letters
  • assess the likelihood of you being granted a scholarship at Swinburne. 

As such, it is essential that you complete the EOI as accurately as you can. 


The timing of our regular calls for EOIs are timed to approximately coincide with the major scholarship application deadlines. Please log in to the EoI system for deadline details.

Log in to our EOI system
Have technical difficulties?

If you have any difficulties in using the EOI system, please email Associate Professor Ryan Shannon

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The formal scholarship application and enrolment process is administered by Swinburne, rather than by CAS, and can take 6-10 weeks. For international students, the visa application process can only begin after Swinburne has approved the PhD application.

In our experience, visa applications are typically processed within 1-2 months. Travel arrangements can only be made after a visa has been awarded. 

While there can be considerable flexibility around start dates, successful applicants typically start their PhD positions at least six months after the EOI deadline. 

Visit us!

We welcome and encourage visits to CAS by prospective PhD students. It's the best way for you to see who we are, what we do and what doing a PhD here is all about. Please contact Associate Professor Ryan Shannon by phone or email to arrange a visit.

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Policies and guidelines

Swinburne Research administers all of the university's research and graduate studies. For more information, see the Research degrees page.

Learn more

Looking for more information?

If you have any questions about study opportunities at the Centre for Astrophysics and Supercomputing, please feel free to contact our office on +61 3 9214 8000 or at contact@astro.swinburne.edu.au

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