Skip to content

Research Degrees

Want an exceptional student experience? Our postgraduate research students receive a world-class education from a university ranked in the top 1% of universities in the world.

Higher Degrees by Research Program (JBI-HDRP)

The Institute's research degree programs have been designed to meet the needs of busy clinicians and health care professionals who are seeking to grow or establish their careers. The popular higher degree by research programs are covered by the Research Training Scheme (RTS) and have no fees attached for Australian and New Zealand citizens and residents.

Research projects undertaken by our Institute's postgraduate research students encompass various areas within a broad spectrum. Learn more

Download the Master of Clinical Science and PhD flyer.

The Master of Clinical Science is a 1-2 year full-time postgraduate research degree offered by the Faculty of Health and Medical Science, the University of Adelaide. This degree with Joanna Briggs Institute aims to train students in research methodologies and techniques associated with evidence-based health care, as well as the critical evaluation of evidence and its implementation and evaluation. Candidates who have exceeded all milestones and have completed their first 18 months of the Master of Clinical Science degree may be considered for a transfer to the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), subject to approval.

The Institute is offering supervision for candidates interested in skill development in: searching for; appraising; extracting and synthesing evidence; in conducting systematic reviews; and in translating evidence into action in health policy and clinical practice.

This research degree includes a full-time, one semester program offered on-campus at the Institute in Adelaide. Course materials include:

  • Biostatistics
  • Qualitative research methods
  • Systematic reviews of quantitative, qualitative and economic evidence
  • Translation of evidence into action
  • Conduct of a systematic review and/or an evidence implementation project and submission of a thesis based on this work
  • Option to transfer to PhD on a fast-track enrolment
  • The Structured Program

    Unique to the Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI), the structured program comprises 'core' and 'development' components. Development components are the entire range of short courses that JBI offers, normally for a fixed fee, students have the option of enrolling for free in any JBI course run from Adelaide.

    Postgraduate Research candidates are required to complete the following short courses offered in two one-week intensive residencies in JBI as part of their 'Core' program (first 6 months of candidature).

    Week 1

    • Introduction to Evidence-Based Health Care and the Systematic Review of Evidence
    • Statistical Concepts & Methods for Evidence-Based Health Care
    • Qualitative Reference Methods
    • Searching Databases

    Week 2

    • The Appraisal, Extraction & Pooling of Quantitative Data from experimental & epidemiologic studies
    • The Appraisal, Extraction and Pooling of Qualitative Data from critical interpretive & textural literature of study papers
    • The Comprehensive Review Management System update & overview

    A 2 Day Research School incorporating a one day Symposium for all Higher Degrees by Research (HDR)/PhD students in each semester of Candidature.

  • Entry Requirements

    Please see the Adelaide Graduate Centre for entry requirements.

This program is fee-exempt for Australian citizens and permanent residents. Complete an online application form to enrol in this program.

Are you interested in another health-related field of study? Search Degree Finder for health sciences undergraduate and postgraduate degrees.

A Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) is the gateway degree of choice, whether you are a medical graduate, allied health practitioner, or a Registered Nurse, this is the degree to establish your career. 

The Joanna Briggs Institute staff supervise PhD students from across the health disciplines with an interest in evidence review and synthesis, evidence transfer and organisational change, evidence utilisation and safety and quality. Current Master of Clinical Science candidates who have satisfactorily completed their first year of study may be considered for an upgrade or transfer to the PhD;

The first year of the Master of Clinical Science is counted as the first year of PhD study, meaning your PhD is only two short years away.

PhD students enrolled with the University of Adelaide and receiving supervision within JBI are provided with access to all JBI resources and are integrated into the Institute’s extensive international work program. Supervision is offered in the following areas:

  • Evidence Review and Synthesis - Including methodological work on the synthesis of qualitative research findings; the synthesis of text and opinion; the meta-analysis of quantitative research findings; and the systematic review of international evidence.
  • Evidence Transfer - Including the study of the use of electronic and print media in knowledge transfer; guideline development; embedding evidence in organisational systems; and consumer involvement.
  • Evidence Utilisation - Including the evaluation of methods of implementing evidence based guidelines; clinical audit and feedback; and action-oriented approaches to barrier identification and change management in clinical practice improvement.

The University of Adelaide is moving to a new model of expectations for PhD study. Students from 2016 onward will be expected to devote 1.5% of their time to the acquisition of transferable skills, which equates to 15 FTE days over the 1042 days of a four year PhD candidature. This new initiative is part of a suite of changes that intend to enhance the PhD experience, and provide students with a toolkit of skills, knowledge and experiences that may enhance their employment prospects post PhD.

Each PhD student enrolled with JBI will need to develop a plan for at least 5 days of programmed ‘transferable skill acquisition’ education or training. Note that in Semester 1 of the year of enrolment, the JBI intensive residencies in Systematic Review methods will constitute 10 FTE days, therefore no further activity is required in Semester 1 of the first year of enrolment.


Alex Mignone
Program Coordinator, Higher Degrees by Research
Phone: +61 8 8313 8327

The Adelaide Graduate Centre administers both domestic and international postgraduate research applications.

Alternatively you can contact the Institute's Postgraduate Coordinator for assistance. The Postgraduate Coordinator oversees activities and provides assistance, advice and support, where appropriate, in matters such as resolution of grievances, and provision of resources.

The Joanna Briggs Institute

Level 3, 55 King William Road
North Adelaide


Alex Mignone
Program Coordinator, Higher Degrees by Research
T: +61 8 8313 8327


Go to Joanna Briggs Institute Website