The Doctor of Science (DSc) is of a higher standing than either a masters degree (such as the Master of Science (MSc)) or the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) and is awarded for work that makes an original, substantial and distinguished contribution to knowledge in a field with which the faculty is concerned. Work submitted for the degree normally comprises publications that have appeared in the forms of books or papers in scholarly journals that are then presented in the form of a thesis. The degree will give the applicant authoritative standing in that field and the right to general recognition of this standing by scholars in the field.
The application process comprises two main stages. In 'Stage A' applications for the degree are made to the Faculty of Science for initial assessment by the Faculty of Science Higher Doctorate Committee. If a sufficient case is established the applicant is accepted as a candidate for the degree, and in 'Stage B' the work is sent by the Monash University Institute of Graduate Research(MGE) to three examiners for assessment.
Stage A: Submission of application for initial assessment
Stage B: Examination following successful initial assessment
Following a successful initial assessment, in which the application is approved, the candidate is issued with a fees statement for $3000 and asked to provide a fourth copy of the work to the MGE (if not already provided) and a list of persons he or she does not want to examine their work. The Graduate Research Committee determines whether or not the degree will be awarded following receipt of the examiners' reports. In the case of a successful outcome, the applicant will then be able to graduate through the usual process
The work may comprise book chapters, review articles, and refereed scientific papers. It is important to note that the work must 'make an original, substantial and distinguished contribution to knowledge in the field concerned; and give the applicant authoritative standing in that field and the right to general recognition of this standing by scholars in the field'.
Conjointly authored work
Work submitted for the degree may have been written conjointly with another author or authors, as long as the conjoint work is clearly indicated and that there is 'satisfactory evidence to show that the applicant was responsible for a major portion of the work'.
Publications must have been published at least one calendar year prior to the date of submission. For example, if the DSc thesis is submitted on 1 May 2007, the publications contained therein would need to have been 'published' at least one year before this date, that is, 30 April 2006. The definition of 'publish' is normally taken to be the date when the work in question was issued. For example, a paper may be submitted on 1 January 2006 but not appear in press until 15 April 2006. This last date would be the date that the work was 'published'. The interval of a year is felt to be a sufficient period of time for the research community to consider the publications and validate / question the findings.