Skip navigation

Policy: Research training program (RTP) scholarships


To outline the standards, processes and conditions for Australian Government Research Training Program (RTP) support to Higher Degree by Research (HDR) students.


The Research Training Program (RTP) Scholarships Policy provides the principles for application, selection and award of RTP scholarships for students, supervisors and other stakeholders.


This policy applies to HDR domestic and international students in receipt of RTP scholarships, and should be read in conjunction with the Australian National University Research Awards Rule 2021.


Allowance: a benefit of holding an RTP Stipend scholarship, to assist with ancillary costs as detailed in the Research Training Program procedure.

Domestic Student: a student who is:

  1. an Australian citizen;
  2. a New Zealand citizen (or dual citizenship holders of either Australia or New Zealand);
  3. an Australian permanent resident;
  4. an Australian humanitarian visa holder.

Eligible Higher Degree by Research (HDR) Program: an accredited HDR program leading to a Doctor of Philosophy, a Master of Philosophy, or a Professional Doctorate (by Research) defined in Commonwealth Legislation as an accredited ‘course of study’.

International Student: a student who is not a domestic student.

RTP Scholarship types: Students can be offered RTP scholarships for one or more of the following:

  • fee offset which will pay for the tuition fees;
  • stipend for general living costs.

Allowances related to the ancillary cost of research degrees may be provided to students in receipt of an RTP stipend scholarship, as outlined in the RTP scholarships procedure.

Suspension: a period of time during which a student is not receiving RTP stipend support, but remains active in the program, approved in accordance with the RTP Scholarships procedure (see sections 44-49 of the RTP Scholarships Procedure).

Week Block: a period of five working days during which a student is on leave.

Policy statement

  1. The Australian National University offers Australian Government Research Training Program (RTP) scholarships that:
  1. meet Commonwealth legislative requirements as stipulated in the Commonwealth Scholarships Guidelines (Research) 2017 as amended from time to time;
  2. meet the academic standards of the University;
  3. have transparent eligibility requirements and selection criteria and are awarded through a competitive merit-based selection process;
  4. support HDR students who are conducting research which aligns with the strategic directions of the University.

Types of RTP scholarship support and benefits

  1. RTP support and benefits are available to all domestic and selected international HDR candidates, for eligible HDR programs; and can consist of:
  1. RTP Fee Offset scholarships, provided by the University, to pay for the tuition fees of a HDR student that would otherwise have been paid by the student;
  2. RTP Stipend scholarships: an annual amount paid to students to assist with their general living costs while studying including provision for paid leave when eligible (see sections 52-69 of the RTP Scholarships Procedure);
  3. RTP Allowances, to assist with ancillary costs.
  1. The amounts of each type of RTP scholarship and allowance are determined annually by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) no later than 31 March for the following year and published online.


  1. To be eligible for consideration for the award of an RTP scholarship, students must:
  1. be a domestic student or an international student enrolled in an accredited HDR course of study at the Australian National University;
  2. not be receiving income from another source to support that student's general living costs while undertaking their course of study if that income is greater than 75 per cent of that student's RTP Stipend rate. Income unrelated to the student's course of study or income received for the student's course of study but not for the purposes of supporting general living costs is not to be taken into account (see section 73 of the RTP Scholarships Procedure).
  1. Continuing eligibility for RTP scholarships depends upon students remaining enrolled and, for international students, retaining residency status for the duration of their eligible HDR program. If an international student changes their residency status the university is required to reconsider their eligibility for RTP scholarships in respect of their changed residential status.
  2. Students cannot receive an equivalent scholarship from the Commonwealth designed to offset HDR tuition fees if they receive a RTP Fee Offset scholarship.

Selection and offers

  1. RTP Stipend scholarships are awarded to both domestic and international students through a competitive process, and require admission to an eligible HDR program.
  2. Domestic students automatically receive a RTP Fee Offset scholarship when admitted to an eligible HDR program at the University.
  3. International students may be awarded a RTP Fee Offset scholarship in a competitive process.

Periods of support

  1. For each RTP Scholarship awarded the following minimum and maximum periods of RTP entitlement apply:
  1. Research Doctorate: A minimum of three years and maximum of four years full-time student load;
  2. Research Masters: A maximum of two years full-time student load.
  1. The periods of support for part-time students are double the full-time equivalent amounts.

Transferring and continuing students

  1. Students changing institutions are required to declare prior RTP scholarships before commencing at ANU in an eligible HDR program. Where a student changing institutions is not continuing with their original project and supervisor and no credit is provided for the study, then their available period of support resets.
  2. ANU Students who have previously been offered and have accepted Australian Government scholarships prior to the introduction of RTP Scholarships from 1 January 2017 are transferred to the equivalent RTP Scholarship as detailed in the Continuing Students (enrolled prior to 1 January 2017) section of the related procedure.


Printable version (PDF)
Title Research training program (RTP) scholarships
Document Type Policy
Document Number ANUP_016007
Purpose To outline the standards, processes and conditions for Australian Government Research Training Program (RTP) support to Higher Degree by Research (HDR) students.
Audience Students-Graduate-Research, Prospective Students, Staff, Staff-Academic, Students, Staff-Academic-Research, Students-Graduate-Research
Category Academic
Topic/ SubTopic Students - Higher Research Degrees
Effective Date 21 Apr 2020
Next Review Date 21 Apr 2025
Responsible Officer: Pro Vice-Chancellor (Graduate Research)
Approved By: Academic Board
Contact Area Graduate Research Office
Authority: Commonwealth Scholarships Guidelines (Research) 2017
Delegations 0

Information generated and received by ANU staff in the course of conducting business on behalf of ANU is a record and should be captured by an authorised recordkeeping system. To learn more about University records and recordkeeping practice at ANU, see ANU recordkeeping and Policy: Records and archives management.

Related Content

Research Training Program scholarships