PhD Opportunities

Applications are sought for PhD positions in the Centre for Excellence for the Dynamics of Language (CoEDL), funded by the Australian Research Council for the period mid-2014 to mid-2021. 

CoEDL has an ambitious series of interlinked projects on language as a dynamic and variable system, and drawing on the full diversity of the world’s languages, especially in the Asia-Pacific region and Australia. There are four programs:  the design space of language (Shape), how it is learned (Learning) and processed (Processing), and how linguistic structures evolve at various timescales (Evolution). Two ‘threads’ (Archiving, and New Generation technologies) enable the technological advances needed to drive forward the language sciences in the coming decades. The Centre is strongly interdisciplinary and features researchers from linguistics, speech pathology, psychology, anthropology, philosophy, bioinformatics and robotics. CoEDL is centred on four nodes (Australian National University, University of Melbourne, University of Queensland and Western Sydney University), with partner institutions in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific, Asia, Europe and North America.

Students will be required to win their own scholarship (Australian Postgraduate Award or international equivalent or Endeavour Fellowship) (we will try to help in this process). They will receive generous fieldwork and travel (conferences etc) funding, as well as opportunities to attend the annual CoEDL Summer Schools and other workshops through the year. 

This page is regularly updated, and new topics added, so we recommend you check it periodically.  Supervisors to contact are listed here. Note that some topics may be undertaken at more than one node (for example all 4 nodes have staff who can supervise theses on Indigenous Australian languages).

Please send a CV (including academic transcript) and a one-page summary of your relevant research experience and interest in a particular topic to the relevant supervisors by:

31 May (international students applying to the University of Queensland, and Endeavour scholarship applicants for all nodes)

31July (all domestic students, as well as international students applying to ANU, Western Sydney University and University of Melbourne)

Intending students should visit the Call-for-PhD pages for each of these institutions and find out what's on offer: 


Students are encouraged to apply for scholarships to pay tuition, while CoEDL can provide stipends and fieldwork support to successful applicants. 

Click on the links below to find scholarship information for:

International students should consider the following scholarship program:

Applicants to the PhD program at the Australian National University, may wish to consider applying for a Wurm Phd Scholarship.

  • Australian Government
  • The University of Queensland
  • Australian National University
  • The University of Melbourne
  • Western Sydney University