Higher Doctorates

A higher doctorate degree is a postgraduate research degree in which a candidate’s published work and merit in a particular field are recognised. A higher doctorate degree is of a higher standing than either a Masters by Research degree or the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD).

The awards are made on the basis of a significant body of published scholarly work that establishes the candidate as a distinguished authority in an area of research, commanding worldwide recognition. The candidate should have made a significant contribution to the advancement of learning with the contributions being exemplified in a discourse that outlines the theoretical basis of the work and the significance of the candidate’s contribution to knowledge.

Higher Doctorates available at UNSW

  • Doctor of Science (DSc)

  • Doctor of Letters (DLitt)

  • Doctor of Laws (LLD)

  • Doctor of Music (DMus)

  • Doctor of Engineering (DEng)

  • Doctor of Economics (DEc)

  • Doctor of Business (DBus)


  • A candidate for a Higher Doctorate should have made a substantial and distinguished contribution to knowledge in an area of research, which is reflected in their professional career AND EITHER;

  • Hold a degree from UNSW and have held that degree for at least ten years OR

  • Hold a degree of at least ten years standing from another approved university AND also have been engaged for at least four years in advanced study and research as a member of the academic staff at UNSW.


If you are interested in applying for a higher doctorate, please read the Conditions for Award of Higher Doctorates Policy and Information for Applicants. After reading these documents, please contact the Director of the Graduate Research School, Sean Goodwin, via email at s.goodwin@unsw.edu.au and attach a copy of your CV. 

Further Information

For further information regarding higher doctorates please contact Sean Goodwin at s.goodwin@unsw.edu.au.