4.3 Studying away

4.3 Studying away from the University


Australian citizens and Australian permanent residents are restricted by the Federal Government from travelling overseas from 25 March, 2020. This prohibition is aligned with the Government's decision to raise the DFAT smartraveller travel advice to level 4 - do not travel overseas. No applications for international travel will be approved until further notice.

Domestic travel should be avoided but will be considered where the laboratory or fieldwork is absolutely essential and formally approved by the Dean. Please contact your faculty office prior to completing a Study Away/Travel Grant form. Review the information on student travel insurance and ensure you attach a completed Travel Plan with your application. Travel grants are available for approved domestic travel.

If you need to request an extension to a research overseas period, please email your Faculty Office.

Please refer to the Monash COVID-19 Fact Sheet for more information.

Refer to the current Monash University (Academic Board) Regulations.

Approval from the Graduate Research Committee is required to pursue research interstate or overseas for any period of time. The application for study away must be supported by both the main supervisor and head of the academic unit (or nominee).

Study away will only be approved where the proposed travel is an integral part  of the research program. Some examples of this include: a period of research at the partner institution in a  joint doctoral program; where the student is  attending a conference; undertaking field work or research; conducting  interviews; visiting an external supervisor; consulting with experts in the  field of research; or accessing equipment and other resources which cannot be  found on campus. Study away will not be approved for personal reasons. To be eligible students must also be currently enrolled, not on a leave of absence from candidature for the period of the proposed travel, and not under examination.

Where a student wishes to relocate away from campus, a transfer to external enrolment should be considered (see Conditions of Enrolment). Students enrolled at Monash University Malaysia cannot enrol by external mode. Restrictions apply to international students on Australian student visas.

Where the research will be undertaken principally at a research site other than Monash University (e.g. archives repository, field site, laboratory, commercial or governmental research station, another university etc.), the on-site supervisor needs to assure Monash that the site provides a research environment which offers appropriate resources, safety, facilities and research expertise to support the student for the duration of the research program.

Applications to study away, supported by the student's main supervisor and head of  the academic unit or graduate coordinator, should be submitted on the  appropriate Study Away Form (Monash only). Applications  should be submitted six weeks prior to the student's proposed departure date to the Monash Graduate Research Office (MGRO) for approval.  Students may be restricted by any relevant program requirements.

Please note:

4.3.1 Completing the application

When applying for domestic travel all Monash University students must:

  1. Attach evidence of research activity i.e. conference, fieldwork, AMSI internship or other. Evidence can be a copy of an accepted abstract, an itinerary of the research / fieldwork, invitations, registrations, or email confirmations
  2. Attach an ethics approval letter if ethics approval is required
  3. Refer to Monash University's international travel policy and procedures.

When applying for international travel all Monash University students must:

  1. Check DFAT travel warnings
  2. Attach evidence of research activity i.e. conference, fieldwork, AMSI internship or other. Evidence can be a copy of an accepted abstract, an itinerary of the research / fieldwork, invitations, registrations, and email confirmations.
  3. Attach an ethics approval letter if ethics approval is required
  4. Attach a completed Travel Plan document and complete the Security / Safety Plan (pg. 5 of form) for travel to countries or regions where the DFAT warnings are "Reconsider your need to travel" or "Do Not Travel"
  5. Students located at Monash University Australian campuses must travel with a copy of the AHi Assist 24/7 Emergency Hotline E-card
  6. Refer to Monash University's international travel policy and procedures.

4.3.2 Coursework units

Where a student is undertaking coursework and applying for study away their supervisor must ensure that the student will meet all coursework enrolment obligations and are aware of the implications as per the university’s coursework policies.

Where study away is going to impede completion of coursework and/or skills training units, the supervisor must not approve the study away. Approved study away will not be considered a basis for any subsequent application for special consideration.

4.3.3  Supervision while on study away

Where a student proposes to  study away from the University, supervision arrangements will need to be  specified.

4.3.4  No study away in the first six months

The Graduate Research Committee  considers the first six months of enrolment to be critical to the framing and  establishment of a student's research project. Therefore, requests for study  away during the first six months are normally approved only in exceptional  circumstances. It is acknowledged that in some cases fieldwork, which is an  integral and essential part of the overall doctoral program, may need to be  undertaken during the early months of enrolment.

4.3.5  Duration of study away

In the case of doctoral  students, a maximum period of 12 months' study away may be approved, although  in exceptional circumstances this may be extended to 18 months.

4.3.6  International travel

The University's international travel policy and procedures also apply to graduate research students. Students are encouraged to use Monash’s preferred travel management company.  

Use of this company ensures your travel options meet the guidelines developed by the University in consultation with Strategic Procurement, Human Resources and Occupational, Health and Safety.

4.3.7 Security and risk management for overseas travel

The Australian Department of  Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) issues travel advisories for Australian travellers. Students are required to read the latest travel advisories for the country where they will be travelling and  to attach a copy of the advisories to their application for study away. Travel  to countries with travel advisories categorised as Level 3 ("reconsider your  need to travel") and 4 ("do not travel") will only be approved in exceptional  circumstances and requires approval from the Deputy Vice Chancellor (Global  Engagement) or nominee regardless of whether the country is the student's home country.

4.3.8 Travel insurance

All students travelling on approved study away are automatically covered for travel insurance. Students are not required to complete any forms prior to travel, however should take the Fullerton Health Assistance 24/7 Hotline E-Card in case of an emergency.

Note: Students who travel to countries where the DFAT warning is Level 4 or above may not be covered for evacuation expenses should this become necessary. Travel insurance will cover actively enrolled Monash students for up to 365 days. Additional travel insurance may be required for longer absences.

4.3.9 Pre-travel health check for overseas travel

A pre-travel health check is an  important part of planning any international travel. A pre-travel health check  can be undertaken at any of the University's health services or by a private  physician. It is important that students make an appointment sufficiently in  advance of travel to allow adequate time to follow through with recommended health  advice and vaccinations if required.

4.3.10  International students

International students should  contact Monash Connect when  applying to study away. Under government regulations, there are visa  implications for international students and their dependents should they  leave Australia for an extended period of study away.

4.3.11 Travel grant

A travel grant is a grant provided to support a period of study away. Travel grants can be used to cover airfares and travel related expenses such as taxes and conference registration fees. . To be eligible for a travel grant, a student must comply with study away conditions and be enrolled and located at a Monash Australia campus (excluding joint award students) at the time of application. Joint award students may be eligible, when undertaking their Monash Australia campus stay component of the joint award.

To be considered for a travel grant, student need to satisfy the following criteria:

  1. Presenting at a conference and evidenced with the acceptance /invitation to present, and/or
  2. Undertaking approved fieldwork  relevant to the research project, evidenced by confirmation or planned activities
  3. Must have successfully completed confirmation and  completed the travel prior to thesis submission

Students are ineligible to receive travel grant if they are:

  1. eligible for a staff travel grant
  2. applying for an annual mandatory period of residency at a campus for external student

Eligible students will receive a one off travel grant throughout their candidature. The Monash Graduate Research Office travel grant contribution is $1,175. The Faculty and/or Academic Unit must contribute to the travel grant by providing minimum of $940.

4.3.12 Reimbursement of expenses

Students will be sent a confirmation of reimbursement of their expense within 5 days of the study away and travel grant being approved. Academic Units will also be notified and credited the allocated central contribution amount.

Successful applications should contact their academic unit for reimbursement of their travel costs.

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