Board of Graduate Research Update, from Tracey West HDR Student Rep

The Board of Graduate Research is the senior body within the University which debates and makes recommendations through the Dean, Griffith Graduate Research School to the Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research),and to Academic Committee on matters concerning the University’s graduate research programs, including matters relating to quality of supervision, graduate research admissions, candidature, examinations, scholarships, and communications procedures and policies. Tracey West  was elected in March as HDR Student representative on the Board and we’re very pleased that she has kindly agreed to provide regular updates on the Board’s meetings so as to better inform HDR students on the discussions and decisions that shape your HDR candidature. This is Tracey’s first update and we welcome her to  GUPSA’s pages.


The April meeting of the Board of Graduate Research addressed many important issues relating to HDR students, including amendments to policies covering theses examinations, reporting, supervisory matters and compliance with the requirements of the Australian Qualifications Framework. In addition, some proposed initiatives raised at the meeting included the ongoing discussions that the DVC (Research) is having with Government to provide opportunities to link students with industry, and about increasing the number of dedicated intake periods to four.

Some welcome news for HDR students is that the Board of Graduate Research is undertaking a number of projects aimed at improving our outcomes and experiences. One of those projects focusses on enhancing the skills development opportunities available to HDR students.  The project will involve auditing  existing workshops, and developing a program that is appropriate over the candidature lifecycle. The project will also include developing a mentoring program. A new staff member has been employed to oversee this important initiative.

Some other good news is that the HDR Student Centre has appointed two additional HDR Officers as well as two additional casual staff members. They report that these appointments, as well as recent appointments in the scholarships area, have made a significant difference in managing the workload associated with HDR application processing and scholarship management. The HDR Student Centre also provided a demographic report of HDR students. I was surprised to learn that  a total of 248 HDR students (AEL-94, GBS-21, HEALTH-50, SEET-83) had enrolled in Semester 1, an increase of 6.5% from 2012. For the 2013 Semester 1 intake scholarship round, there were 517 applications and 294 scholarships awarded.

The next meeting is scheduled for the 15th of May. Please feel free to contact me regarding HDR matters at

Tracey West.

Board of Graduate Research HDR Student Representative