Interdisciplinary PhD Scholarship in Human Experiences of Technology

Seeking students to engage in interdisciplinary projects exploring the design, development, and/or critical assessment of digital technologies used in social, educational, health, work, and personal contexts.

These research projects will examine technology design and use, focusing on the intersections of people/society and digital computing technologies. Project designs will be interdisciplinary and use various methodologies and methods to critically assess and/or propose (re)designs of digital technologies. 

  • a stipend of $32,841 per annum pro rata (full-time study), with a possible extension of six months. This amount is subject to indexation annually
  • international candidates in receipt of this scholarship are also awarded an RTP International Tuition Fee Offset Scholarship (RIFOS) or an RMIT Research International Tuition Fee Scholarship (RRITFS).
  • all local candidates, Australian and New Zealand citizens or permanent residents of Australia are provided with an RTP Fee Offset scholarship. Applicants in receipt of an RTP Fee Offset scholarship are not required to pay tuition fees for the maximum duration of their candidature.
  • paid sick, maternity and parenting leave (within the limits of the Scholarship Terms and Conditions).

Applications are open now.

Applications will close once candidates are appointed with intention to start.

Four (4) scholarships are available.

To be eligible for this scholarship you must:

  • Have a first-class Honours degree (or equivalent) in a relevant discipline (e.g., information science, sociology, digital humanities, digital health, computer science, information systems, user experience design)
  • Have strong social research (quantitative/qualitative) AND/OR computing design and analysis skills
  • Provide evidence of strong oral and written communication skills
  • Demonstrate an ability to work as part of an interdisciplinary research team
  • Meet RMIT University’s entry requirements for the Higher Degree by Research programs
  • The scholarship is open to both domestic and international applicants, but the applicant must be living in Australia upon commencement of the PhD

To apply, please submit the following documents to Prof Lisa Given (

  • A cover letter 
  • A research statement of 1-2 pages, outlining the research problem and research questions to be studied, proposed methodology/methods, and brief reference list
  •  A copy of electronic academic transcripts
  • A CV that includes any publications/awards and the contact details of two referees 
  • Thesis and/or research publications

For international applicants, evidence of English proficiency may be required.

Once approved, prospective candidates will be required to submit an application for admission to an appropriate PhD program.

Scholarship applications will only be successful if prospective candidates are provided with an offer for admission.

Digital tools are ubiquitous in our homes, our workplaces, and across all aspects of everyday life. People engage with digital library collections, phone apps, social media platforms, and other digital tools in professional and workplace settings (e.g., hospitals, businesses, schools), in the arts and entertainment (e.g., gaming, music, galleries), and in their personal lives (e.g., social media, websites). Yet, many tools and platforms are not designed with users’ needs or broader social implications in mind. Many systems are not interoperable, or they restrict creativity and productivity.

Effective technology design requires co-creation of new technologies with potential users, as well as post-design testing for fit with users’ needs. These research projects will explore the contexts in which people engage with technology, to critically assess existing tools, to propose new technologies, and/or to conduct user-focused assessments and co-design processes. Possible topic areas may include (but are not limited to):

  • Embodied practices (e.g., wearable technologies; virtual/augmented experience; digital intelligent assistants; navigation and space/place mapping technologies)
  • Critical approaches to technology design and use (e.g., gender issues; marginalised groups)
  • Online information behaviours (e.g., serendipity, creativity, social media use)
  • Online privacy, safety, ethics, and security (e.g., technology-facilitated abuse; bias in social media and other information access, retrieval, and recommendation systems)
  • User experience design (e.g., design of technologies for novel applications; user-focused testing; autonomous vehicles)

Prof Lisa Given (

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Acknowledgement of Country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business - Artwork 'Luwaytini' by Mark Cleaver, Palawa.