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New higher degree by research indicators for 2018


The department has introduced three new indicators for 2018 to support new research block grant funding arrangements.



In response to the ACOLA Review of Australia's Research Training System, the department is introducing a number of new Higher Degree by Research indicators. The department has consulted widely on these new indicators and is now in the implementation phase.

A draft of the indicators is available for your feedback.

The first two elements relate to the submission and completion of a student's thesis and are to be included on the past course completions submission:


These data will be required when you report your 2018 course completions, which is generally in early 2019.

The third element relates to the capture of different forms of industry engagement.


Data on research end‑user engagement for HDR students will be required with your first submission of student data, which is due by 31 May 2018.

This element has been designed to enable you to include data on more than one type of engagement occurring concurrently during a student's unit of study. Your feedback will be essential in ensuring the design captures the required information in the simplest way possible and minimises disruption to your current systems and processes. You may also have a view on whether this would be better structured as a single or two digit code.

Implementation of indicators

Following feedback from the sector, there will be a staged implementation of these indicators.

The first two indicators are to be reported against from 1 January 2018.

  • Research internship with a research end‑user
  • Joint supervision by a research end‑user

The other indicators are optional for 2018, with full implementation proposed from 2019.

  • Jointly funded or fully funded by a research end‑user
  • Formal training on industry engagement
  • Other commercialisation and engagement activities

The glossary terms to support this element will be available on HEIMSHELP shortly.

A Ministerial Notice to confirm the 2018 reporting requirements is expected to be released in mid‑August.

Collection of data on field of research is planned for implementation from 2019.

Please provide any comments you may have on these draft indicators to HEIMS.datacollections [at] education.gov.au by 14 August 2017.

Update: The date for feedback has been extended to 21 August 2017, to allow you additional time to consider the definitions of the indicators and provide your comments prior to the release of the Ministerial Notice in late August. Thank you to those who have already provided feedback.

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