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Opportunity for HDR students to provide feedback on training, experience and needs

Tuesday, 05 November 2019


All HDR students are invited to fill out an annual In-progress Research Experience Questionnaire (IPREQ). The survey evaluates your needs and monitors the overall postgraduate experience at ECU. An email containing a link to the new IPREQ survey has been sent to your student email this week.

Your feedback is an important part of ECU’s continual improvement process for research training and resources and we encourage you to participate in the surveys. Any questions about the iPREQ survey can be directed to

The results of the 2019 iPREQ survey have been received and sent to Schools and Centres for their information. Some examples of how your feedback has been actioned by the Schools and Centres is below:

Graduate Research School

We heard the feedback from those of you who can’t make the face-to-face sessions during business hours, and throughout 2019 we have been building an online environment where can access training and other resources. Most of our workshops are now available in Blackboard, and even if you can make the on-campus sessions, we recommend you have a look at our site, for training you can access whenever and from wherever you need. This is a work in progress, we will be continuing to improve and expand our online offerings! We have also continued to run our more popular sessions on weekends, such as Writing Weekends and Nvivo. Career and professional skill development didn’t rate highly, and this is an area we are focussing on. In 2019 we ran a series of 5 workshops in this stream. We have plans to expand this in 2020 and again, look at online support and resources.

Nursing and Midwifery

We targeted the intellectual environment and engagement of HDR students. Our HDR students have set up a Facebook group. There are now two HDR representatives who sit on the School Research and Research Training Committee. We run a morning session with presentations, introductions and morning tea for all HDR with representatives from the library, CLT and a recent graduate on their journey. We have recorded this and made it available online for those who couldn't attend. HDR students are invited to attend our research group meetings and also Confirmation of Candidature presentations.


We focussed on access to infrastructure and financial support for our HDR students. In 2019 we have:

  • A new and upgraded Research Hub for HDR students, including two dedicated research study spaces, and a kitchenette and common room;
  • An improved process to enable HDR students to apply for the use of WAAPA performance spaces for their research performance projects;
  • Addressed glitches in the booking system for HDR students to book practice rooms and rehearsal spaces;
  • Providing free printing to HDR students (related to their research);
  • Made available conference support grants for HDR students, by competitive application process (in addition to their normal research support funds)

Arts and Humanities

We focused on improving the research culture in the school. To this end, we have recently called for applications for small grants to undertake activities that have the aim of developing research culture. We approved eight projects across a range of disciplines and areas which will be undertaken by the end of 2019. If the overall activity is successful, we plan to offer more such grants in 2020.

Medical and Health Sciences

We conducted an internal review to gain greater detail on the barriers/issues for HDR students in our School. Based on this we:

  • Established a Facebook group and post regular opportunities and messages
  • Held an induction event
  • Commenced a student led presentation series
  • Developed a document for greater clarity on HDR support within the school
  • Prompted CV development workshops
  • Later this year we are also doing some mock interviews to enhance job readiness for our students.


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