Research Culture

At UNSW Arts & Social Sciences we want your graduate years to be among the most exciting and memorable of your life.

That’s why we have actively built an exceptional and involved research culture.

As one of our PhD or Masters by Research students you will benefit from our lively intellectual and collegial environment with many opportunities throughout the year to get involved in seminars, workshops, lectures and conferences.

HDR Calendar

We have brought together a wide variety of workshops, seminars, events, conferences and other opportunities for you as our HDR cohort to participate in the Research Culture of the Faculty and the wider University.

The HDR calendar will be updated monthly. You, as part of the HDR cohort, make up a major component of the Faculty's research culture. We therefore want to ensure you have the opportunity to become involved in all aspects of research during your studies. We strongly encourage you to participate in as many of these activities as possible.

Download the HDR Calendar here (PDF) [439 Kb]

Dean's Research Awards

Now in its sixth year, the annual UNSW Arts & Social Sciences Dean’s Research Awards celebrate excellent research performance by academic staff and Higher Degree Research (HDR) students within the Faculty. The winners are selected by the Dean, Professor Susan Dodds, from a shortlist of recommended recipients from a sub-panel comprised of members of the Arts & Social Sciences Research Committee. There are three HDR awards each year. Congratulations to our 2018 HDR winners:

2018 Dean's Award for Best Doctoral Thesis

Awarded to Dr Emily Hughes for her thesis entitled 'Heidegger, affectedness, and the question of the temporality of being', supervised in the School of Humanities and Languages by Dr Joanne Faulkner and Dr Simon Lumsden

2018 Dean's Award for Best HDR Publication

Jointly awarded to Anthony Chmiel in the School of the Arts and Media for his publication titled 'Back to the inverted-U for music preference: A review of the literature'; and to Jacqueline Dalziell in the School of Social Sciences for her publication titled 'Microbiology as Sociology: The Strange Sociality of Slime,’ in What if Culture Was Nature All Along?'.

2018 Dean's Award for Best HDR Supervision

Awarded to Dr Peter White in the School of the Arts & Media

HDR Graduation Celebration

In each round of graduations the Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences holds a celebratory event in honour of our graduating PhD and Masters by Research candidates. All current HDRs and academic staff are invited to congratulate those candidates who will receive their degrees after years of dedicated research. at each event, a number of the graduating candidates will speak about their research thesis, to provide an overview of the work that they have completed over the last few years. This is an excellent opportunity for you to engage with the research community of the entire faculty, and to congratulate these very deserving researchers.

May Graduations August Graduations December Graduations
Date Tuesday, 7th May 2019
Presentations 3:00pm - 4:30pm
Refreshments 4:30pm - 5:00pm
Location CLB 1, Central Lecture Block 

Three minute thesis competition

Ever considered trying to present your thesis in 180 seconds using only one PowerPoint slide?

The Three Minute Thesis is just one of the great ways you can participate in a research event. The yearly run competition  sees some of our Faculty’s best students present their thesis and its main ideas to a non-specialised audience. Finalists have the chance to represent the Faculty at the University level.

The 2019 3MT Faculty Heat was held in the evening of Tuesday 6th July. This year's heat showcased the breadth of research being undertaken by our higher degree researchers, with 7 candidates competing. The heat was attended by over 35 guests who were treated to a vibrant and engaging glimpse into our higher degree research culture. 

Congratulations to our 2019 3MT Faculty Heat Winners!

First Place: Riza Veloso, School of Arts and Media

Runner-up: Kristen Overton, Centre for Social Research in Health

People's Choice: Eun Kyong Park, School of Education

We wish them all the best of luck at the UNSW Inter-Faculty Final on 17th September, 2019

Congratulations to our 2018 3MT Faculty Heat Winners! 
First Place: Julian Zipparo, School of Education
Runner-up: Muhammed Ourang, School of Humanities & Languages
People's Choice: Jiarui Hou, School of Humanities and Languages

Arts & Social Sciences Success at the UNSW Inter-Faculty Final 2017

Congratulations to Antoni Tsaputra from Arts & Social Sciences for winning the Peoples' Choice Prize and the ARC Prize at the 2017 UNSW Inter-Faculty Final. Antoni impressed the audience with his three-minute presentation on enabling people with disabilities to participate actively in development planing and budgeting processes in Indonesia.

Antoni Tsaputra 3MT 2017

Congratulations to our 2017 Faculty Heat winners:

First place and People's Choice: Antoni Tsaputra - Disability Inclusive Budgeting: enabling people with disabilities to have a say in development planning
Runner-up: Muhammed Ourang - Saving Endangered Languages

Congratulations to our 2016 Faculty Heat winners:

First place and People's choice:Sarah Mulholland - Knowledge and attitudes of New South Wales Government school teachers towards students who exhibit ADHD-type behaviours

Runner-up: Han Xu - Lawyers working with interpreters in Australia

2016 3 MT winners - Sarah and Han!

Postgraduate students' committee

The Postgraduate students' committee represents postgraduate students' interests on School and Faculty committees. It also regularly holds social events and convenes an annual conference. Details of previous events can be found on our Facebook page. If you have any questions or concerns you would like to raise with the Committee please email us at

Postgraduate students' facebook group

The postgraduate students' Facebook group is a forum where students can ask questions and share information with other students, including details about resources, reading groups, conferences, seminars and job opportunities.

Annual postgraduate research conference

The annual postgraduate research conference brings together students from across Schools to share ideas and promote greater interdisciplinary thinking. It provides an opportunity for students to present papers, raise questions and receive feedback. Details of previous conferences can be found on Facebook. If you would like to be involved in the organisation of the next conference please contact the postgraduate students' committee.

The 2018 postgraduate conference was held on Friday 20th July. 'Headways: Progress and New Directions in the Arts & Social Sciences'  showcased presentations by over 70 HDR and Honours students. This conference was attended by approximately 90 research staff and students over the course of the day. The Conference is a great opportunity to engage in the HDR Research Culture in Arts & Social Sciences, while honing conference abstract and presentation skills.