The University of Sydney


Coastal advisor
"In keeping with my childhood dreams, I am a coastal advisor for the NSW government and provide advice on managing the impacts of hazards on NSW coasts, beaches and estuaries."

"Growing up on Sydney’s northern beaches, I forged a close relationship with the coast from a young age. I was part of the local surf club and was in the water pretty much every day. This daily exposure to the beach enabled me to see first-hand how our local coastline was being managed, and the problems in balancing public access, development and protection of the coast. From then on, I wanted to play a key role in coastal management."

  • PhD

    Through contacts I developed during my PhD, I was offered a 12-month temporary job as Coastal Advisor with the Office of Environment and Heritage, which I now holds on a permanent, full-time basis. University is a great time to build networks. My postgraduate study provided the technical grounding for my job, and it also marks a highlight of my career. Completing my PhD gave me a real sense of achievement. I feel lucky to have landed a job that’s in-line with my studies in the field I’m passionate about, and it’s rewarding to be making an ongoing difference to how we manage our coastline for both our and future generations.

    Urunga king tide by M. Bradbury

    Urunga king tide by M. Bradbury

    The Australian Coastal Society has been established to promote knowledge and understanding of the environmental, social and economic value of the Australian coast.

  • Honours

    Next, I enrolled in Honours, which was essential in opening the door to my PhD and future job. The professional network I developed during Honours and PhD was essential in helping me secure my job. University is a great time to build networks, and you can also make contacts through groups like the Australian Coastal Society.

    Working in marine science

    Working in marine science

    Australian Institute of Marine Science employee Greg Coleman retrieving ARMS from Ningaloo Reef in May. Image: Gary Cranitch.

  • Marine science

    The path to winning my dream job started with a marine science degree at Sydney, where I studied marine biology, oceanography, geology and coastal zone management.

    Careers in marine science

    Careers in marine science

    The growing recognition of the importance of marine science to Australia and the increased funding for marine research is opening up many job opportunities.


How to Apply

  • How to apply for a research degree

    Applying for entry to a research degree requires some time and preparation.

  • Step 1. Identify and establish an academic contact/potential supervisor

    Contact a member of academic staff to send your initial research proposal to. Use our Research Supervisor Connect tool to find them.

  • Step 2. Develop and submit an initial research proposal

    Once you have initiated discussions with an academic contact, you should prepare your initial research proposal of around 500 words.

  • Step 3. Revise and finalise your research proposal

    In conjunction with your academic contact, refine your research proposal ready for submission of your formal application.

  • Step 4. Identify and contact two academic referees

    Once you have completed the proposal and had it reviewed by your academic contact, you’re ready to submit your application.

  • Step 6. Submit your application

    All research applications are made online through the Find a course database. For PhD applications, go to Find a Course, search for 'Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)' and pick your faculty. Click 'apply now' and follow the instructions.

  • Please note

    You may be required to provide supporting documentation. All documents submitted need to be either original or certified according to the University's Certification of Documents Guidelines (PDF 40KB).

  • Note for International students

    The University of Sydney has many scholarships available for international students.

  • Note for local students

    Domestic research students are exempt from paying fees for the duration of their course.

find your research opportunity

Thinking about research? Match your interests to a research opportunity and a supervisor.

Costs & scholarships

Find out about study costs to help you reach your goal.


Get information about scholarships.

Entry requirements

Not sure if you have the necessary entry requirements for the research course of your choice? Find out more about admission requirements.