Steps/How to apply

Steps/How to apply

Step 1. Find a PhD program

PhD study involves comprehensive, independent research under the supervision of an expert academic.

RMIT Vietnam offers the following PhDs, each of which have a variety of specialised research areas.

Step 2. Check your eligibility

RMIT admits applicants on the basis of their demonstrated capacity to conduct independent research. 
Check that you are eligible to apply for a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD):

  • English language requirements - IELTS 6.5 or equivalent (no band less than 6.0).  Also see: recognised qualifications.
  • Academic entry requirement: Applicants for PhD programs must have completed one of the following from a recognised higher education institution:
    • Masters by Research degree (AQF level 9), OR
    • Masters by coursework degree (AQF level 9)  which includes research courses or a research project with a duration of at least 25% of a full-time (or equivalent part-time) academic year and an overall distinction average, OR
    • Four year Bachelor Honours degree (AQF level 8) - with a minimum H2A achieved across the four years, OR
    • Three year Bachelor Degree and a one year Bachelor Honours degree program (AQF level 8) - with a minimum H2A achieved in the Honours year, OR
    • Another award deemed to be equivalent in character and standard to the above degrees.
  • Alternatively applicants may have a current candidature for an RMIT Vietnam Masters by Research program approved for transfer to a PhD.

If you don’t meet the entry requirements for your preferred program, you can consider a range of programs that may provide pathways to your preferred program.

Step 3. Identify your research topic

All applicants for a PhD programs at RMIT Vietnam should have a proposed research topic that is aligned with at least one of RMIT's identified research strengths.

You can either develop your own research topic, or link your PhD to an existing RMIT research project. If you want to develop your own topic, you should first think about your area of interest and read through background information. You should familiarise yourself with the research areas at RMIT Vietnam.

Once you have identified your topic, you should then align it with one of RMIT Vietnam’s research areas. Your discussion with the supervisors in your proposed Centre/School will assist you to identify whether your research topic will be an appropriate fit for RMIT's research strengths.

Step 4. Find a supervisor

Each PhD student is required to have two supervisors (one supervisor in Category of 1, based in Vietnam and one supervisor Category 2, based in Australia or Vietnam). Further information

Step 5. Prepare your PhD proposal

The proposal is a key part of the process where you must demonstrate the value of your research topic. 
The potential supervisor(s) will read and comment on your proposal, and indicate if they are willing to supervise you before you submit your application. Your proposal should be presented as a two to five page overview of your research, divided under the following headings:

  • Title and topic
  • Research questions you plan to investigate in the context of existing research/literature in the area|
  • Significance and impact of the research
  • Methodology/research tasks required to undertake the research
  • Any particular needs, if applicable (e.g. resources, facilities, fieldwork or equipment that are necessary for your proposed research program).

A good way to start your proposal is to think about your potential audience.

  • Who is your academic audience and how might this work affect their understanding of the field?
  • Is there an audience beyond academics, such as practitioners or the general public, who might care about your work? Why should they care?

In most cases it is sufficient to demonstrate that there is academic interest, but identifying the potential broader interest in your findings can be a way to help you find the most relevant and pressing problems.

Unsuccessful proposals tend to suffer from a number of common problems. The most common is that the researcher is not really asking a genuine research question, but seeking supporting evidence for a preconceived idea. Ask yourself: are you seeking new knowledge or trying to prove something you think you know?

The research proposal (format, sample) can be a difficult document to write. If you are already in contact with potential supervisors they may read over early drafts and provide advice.

These books might also be helpful in understanding research degrees and how to write a research proposal:

Evans and Gruba (2002), How to write a better thesis, Melbourne University Press.
Denholm and Evans (ed) (2006), Doctorates Downunder, ACER Press
Booth, Colomb and Williams (2003), The craft of research, University of Chicago Press.
Dunleavy, P (2003), Authoring a PhD, Palgrave Macmillan.
Rugg and Petre (2004), The unwritten rules of PhD research, Open University Press.

Step 6. Submit your application

Our application process asks you for evidence of your ability to complete a research degree and details of your previous professional experience and formal qualifications, so your application can be properly assessed.

Please ensure that you include the required certified copies of all supporting documents, your research proposal and any additional documentation requested (i.e. selection tasks etc.) before your submit your application.

Please refer to research scholarships for information on how to apply for a scholarship, if you have not already done so.

Submit your application with all required documents above to the following email address:   and the hard-copies to the following address:

PhD Program Coordinator,
PhD Program, RMIT Asia Graduate Centre,
RMIT Vietnam, 702 Nguyen Van Linh Blvd, District 7, Ho Chi Minh city, Vietnam.

Application fee

  • You will need to pay a non-refundable application fee of 2.240.000 VND: Please visit payment methods.

Required documents

  • PhD application form
  • National ID or passport (certified copy)
  • Certified or original copies of academic transcripts and graduation certificates for all programs you are currently enrolled in, have previously attempted and have completed (Both the original language and English translation)
  • Certified copies of all graduation degrees in both the original language and English  (not required for current RMIT students applying to another RMIT program)
  • Evidence of English language proficiency (Please refer to for further details)
  • Any documentation relating to selection tasks (pre-selection kits, folios etc.)
  • Your own CV (with details of your professional and research experience, including academic qualifications, publications and exhibitions), work reference letter, referee report etc, if applicable (English version)
  • A statement from your employer detailing working arrangements during the candidature
  • Two photographs (3x4 cm) taken within the last 6 months
  • Receipt of non-refundable application fee of 2.240.000 VND
  • PhD research proposal with two research supervisor names
  • Other documents as instructed in the PhD application form

(Please note that there should be English translations of all documents, documents submitted will not be returned).

What are certified documents?

A certified copy is a document that has been verified to be a true copy by a witness who has sighted the original. The authorised person certifying the photocopy must sight the original document and include the following details on all pages that contain information:

  • Stamp or write, 'This is a true copy of the document sighted by me'
  • Sign, date and provide contact details (name, address and telephone number)
  • The official stamp or seal of their organisation or their profession and organisation’s name.

If you need assistance, please email

Next steps

Your application will be assessed in line with RMIT Vietnam’s policies and procedures. If you are successful, you will receive an offer letter which will include details of how to enrol. You can then accept the offer and enrol into your PhD program. Response times may vary, depending on your nominated program and Centre, and the time of year you apply.