Engineering & IT Future Researchers Symposium

Design a better future with a PhD at Australia’s leading university.

Considering a PhD in engineering or IT?

If you’re passionate about changing the world and want a taste of PhD life at the University of Melbourne, join like-minded individuals, current research students and academic staff at our Engineering & IT Future Researchers Symposium.

Discover the best way to pitch your thesis, meet potential supervisors and learn how to make the most out of your PhD.

We are offering travel scholarships to high achieving students, graduates and alumni to attend this special event at the University of Melbourne.

Symposium program

5–8pm Friday 18 May 2018

Forum Theatre, Level 1
Arts West Building (148)
Parkville Campus [View map]

Introduction and research overview

Explore the breadth of engineering and IT research at the Melbourne School of Engineering.

Panel discussion

Hear from a panel of academic staff, current PhD students and alumni about:

  • Where a PhD in engineering or IT can take you
  • How to find the right project and supervisor for you
  • Commercialising your thesis topic
  • What a successful PhD researcher looks like
Meet potential supervisors

Have your PhD study queries answered and discuss your research goals with potential supervisors and current PhD students.

Refreshments will be served.

Travel grants

Travel scholarships of up to $600 (depending on distance travelled) will be awarded to high achieving Australian or New Zealand citizens, and Australian permanent residents residing interstate or in New Zealand.

All Symposium registrants residing interstate or in New Zealand will be considered for travel scholarships.

Who should attend?

We are inviting high achieving students or graduates of universities in Australia and New Zealand to attend the Future Researchers Symposium.

Attendees must either:

  • be in the final year of a four year honours degree in a cognate discipline or
  • be in the final year of a Master’s degree in a cognate discipline with a substantial research component (at least 25% of your final year) or
  • have already completed either of the above


  • must have achieved an overall average above 80%

How to apply

Apply online by Friday 11 May. You will need to supply your GPA and a 100 word summary of your research area of interest or thesis topic.

Upon submitting your application, you will be sent an email address in order to send us the following documents:

  • A copy of your CV
  • Academic transcript
  • Evidence of your citizenship and/or Australian residency

Applications are now closed.

Research spotlight

Designing interactive zoo tech

How can we use digital technology to support animal welfare, education, entertainment and conservation in Australia’s zoos?

PhD candidate Sarah Webber is part of a team working with Zoos Victoria to explore how digital technology can help animals have greater choice over their environment and enrichment.

Using interactive projection that works like a touchscreen on the floor, Sarah’s team is providing Melbourne orang-utans with the opportunity to play games that challenge their minds, from painting applications to picture galleries.

In a few years, orang-utans could be playing computer games with visitors whenever they want.

“Orang-utans like to know what’s happening on the visitors’ side of the glass, and interacting with visitors could be an important form of enrichment for them,” says Sarah.

 “I chose to undertake a PhD at Melbourne because I knew I would be part network of experts who would be supportive of my research. I am really quite lucky in my research group to feel part of a community and turn to people if I have questions.”

Sarah Webber is a PhD Candidate in the Microsoft Centre for Social Natural User Interfaces (SocialNUI), Melbourne School of Engineering. She is a Google PhD Fellowship recipient and Google Anita Borg Memorial Scholar.

More about this project

Further information

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