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Doctor of Public Safety

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Doctor of Public Safety

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The Doctor of Public Safety aims to provide the opportunity for advanced research and development involving critical reflection on professional practice in the discipline of Public Safety and allied fields. You will gain systemic and critical understanding of a substantial and complex body of knowledge at the frontier of your discipline or area of professional practice.

  • Why study this course?

    CSU's Doctor of Public Safety meets the increasing demand of professionals in public safety who are looking for a Doctoral degree that enables a significant and original contribution to knowledge in the context of professional practice. Students gain substantial knowledge of research principles and methods applicable to their professional field of public safety, equipping them with the ongoing capacity to generate new knowledge in their professional practice.

    As a professional doctorate, the Doctor of Public Safety comprises 30% coursework and 70% research. During the coursework phase students are assigned supervisors and develop solid research methodology and literature review chapters, preparing them to enter the research and dissertation phase with confidence.

    The first coursework subject, EMG705 Critical Issues in Research, introduces students to the research process and various components of a dissertation. Students emerge with a well-honed research question and rationale.

    At the completion of the second and third subjects (EMG706 Literature Review and EMG707 Researching Professional Practice) students are expected to emerge with solid research methodology and literature review chapters. Their ethics application should either be well underway or already submitted.

    The final coursework subject, EMG708 Research Proposal, provides students an opportunity to complete the ethics application and/or address Ethics Committee feedback, give a verbal defence of their proposal to Faculty and peers, and to finely hone their proposal ready for submitting to Faculty. Students will be well prepared to enter the research and dissertation phase.

  • Credit and pathways

    Graduates of a coursework Masters degree that complies with the admission requirements, or a Masters degree by research are encouraged to apply.

    Students who have successfully completed EMG506 Literature Review as part of their CSU Master's degree studies will receive transfer credit for EMG706 Literature Review.

    Credit for prior learning and credit for current competencies will be granted to eligible applicants.

    More about Credit

  • Subjects
    Research areas

    Public safety embraces a broad range of professions and activities including emergency and disaster management, public health, humanitarian relief, crisis communication, fire investigation, policing, security, border management, local government, water, electricity, non-government organisations and social services.

    Examples of possible research areas include various aspects of:

    • public health

    • emergency and disaster management

    • evacuation and recovery centres

    • disaster economics

    • crisis communications

    • early warning systems

    • structural and wildfire investigation

    • volunteering

    • search and rescue

    • biosecurity and pandemic response

    • leadership, management and decision-making

    • aviation security

    • humanitarian relief

    • water and electricity services

    • psychosocial aspects of recovery

    • border security and management

    • community preparation and recovery

    The below information is for new students. Current students should select their subjects by checking the Handbook for the year of their enrolment

    Course structure

    Students must satisfactorily complete 192 credit points to graduate. Of these, 64 points of coursework subjects must be completed prior to commencing the Thesis, and 128 points will be provided by the completion of the Thesis. 

    The course consists of four 16 credit point core coursework subjects (64CP) and a dissertation of 128 points.

    Coursework subjects
    EMG705 Critical Issues in Research
    EMG706 Literature Review
    EMG707 Researching Professional Practice
    EMG708 Research Proposal and Presentation

    EMG709  Doctoral thesis FT (Public Safety) (Full time; 4 sessions) (128 points)
    EMG710  Doctoral thesis PT (Public Safety) (Part time; 8 sessions) (128 points)

    Enrolment pattern

    Session 1

    EMG705 Critical Issues in Research
    EMG706 Literature Review

    Session 2
    EMG707 Researching Professional Practice
    EMG708 Research Proposal and Presentation

    Sessions 3 – 6
    EMG709 Doctoral Thesis FT (Public Safety) (128)

    Session 1

    EMG705 Critical Issues in Research

    Session 2
    EMG707 Researching Professional Practice

    Session 3
    EMG706 Literature Review

    Session 4
    EMG708 Research Proposal and Presentation

    Sessions 5 – 12
    EMG710 Doctoral Thesis PT (Public Safety) (128)

  • Admission information

    Candidates admitted to the course will:

    • hold a class 1 or class 2 division 1 bachelor (honours) degree, or a master degree by coursework and research experience; or a master degree by research. Variation to admission requirements based on alternative academic qualifications will be assessed by the Course Coordinator in consultation with the Faculty of Arts, Associate Dean Research
    • have at least five years of full time (or equivalent) practice in Public Safety or in a cognate area, some of which must be current
    • meet the University's English language proficiency requirements

    Variation to admission requirements based on recognition of prior learning will be assessed by the Course Coordinator in consultation with the Faculty of Arts Associate Dean Research. An applicant for admission to the Doctor of Public Safety may be accepted without the qualifications specified above if he/she has some other appropriate combination of undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications (such as relevant graduate diplomas) and/or professional performance which demonstrate that he/she is capable of undertaking research at a Doctoral level. These admission requirements are necessary to ensure that candidates have sufficient academic ability and professional experience to conduct research that leads to advanced, critical reflection on professional practice.

    Before submitting an application you should make contact with the appropriate Associate or Sub-Dean of Graduate Studies. Applicants also need to complete the Additional Information Form which includes a 300 word research outline. For more information, visit the Research Office.

    See standard CSU admission criteria

  • Cost of study

    Fees - please visit the fees and costs page or contact us for current fee information.

    Tax deduction - in some instances a tax deduction may be claimed for self education expenses. Please seek independent qualified taxation advice.

    Alumni discount

    Already studied with CSU? Our 10% Alumni discount applies to this course!
    Find out more

  • Course details

    Campus locations listed for Online students are purely for administrative purposes and have no relevance to the student experience.

    Enrol TypeModeCampusFee typeSession 1Session 2Session 3Admission Code

    CGS: Commonwealth Government supported places
    FPPG: Fee-paying postgraduate places
    FPOS: Fee-paying overseas student places
    Admission Code: For your reference if required during your application process
    NO TAC: An admission code is not required for applications to CSU Study Centres
    TEMP: An admission code has not yet been assigned for this course

    Graduation requirements

    Students must satisfactorily complete 192 credit points to graduate. Of these, 64 points of coursework subjects must be completed prior to commencing the Thesis, and 128 points will be provided by the completion of the Thesis.

    Students must complete the four coursework subjects worth 64 points and achieve a satisfactory result. In order to graduate they must then successfully pass examination as per the Doctoral Degree (Professional) requirements of CSU and the Faculty of Arts.

  • How to apply

    For information on how to apply, visit the Research Office.

    Apply direct to CSU

    An online application to CSU takes about 15 minutes to complete. Find out more

    Apply online

    Apply direct to CSU

    Apply direct to CSU for on campus study at a CSU regional campus, or study by distance education.

    Apply online

    Recruitment agent

    Contact a Recruitment agent in your country who can answer your questions about CSU as well as help with the student visa application process.

    International recruitment agents

    Thinking of deferring?

    Find out more about deferral

  • About the School

    Australian Graduate School of Policing and Security (AGSPS)

    Established in 1993, CSU’s Australian Graduate School of Policing and Security (AGSPS) is a leading provider of postgraduate research and education for professionals in law enforcement, emergency management and security. CSU’s courses offered through AGSPS span a broad range of global issues that include international terrorism, intelligence analysis, transnational crime, fraud and financial crime, corruption, cyber-crime, and natural disaster management. Our faculty members are leaders in their fields and have significant experience and academic expertise. The School continues to grow through close collaboration with law enforcement, regulators, universities, research bodies, private industry and emergency services providers in Australia and overseas, with courses attracting students from around the globe. AGSPS also provides education and training programs in Abu Dhabi, China, India (National Police Academy), New Zealand, Indonesia (UNODC), Singapore, Canada and the United Kingdom.

  • Academic expectations

    For each 8 point subject at CSU, students should normally expect to spend between 140-160 hours engaged in the specified learning and assessment activities (such as attending lectures or residential schools, assigned readings, tutorial assistance, individual or group research/study, forum activity, workplace learning, assignments or examinations). The student workload for some subjects may vary from these norms as a result of approved course design.

    Students will be assessed on the basis of completed assignments, examinations, workplace learning, or other methods as outlined in specific subject outlines.

    Where applicable, students are responsible for travel and accommodation costs involved in workplace learning experiences, or attending residential schools (distance education students).

    Expectations relating to academic, workplace learning, time and cost requirements for specific subjects are provided in the subject abstracts and in course materials.

    Throughout their studies, CSU students have a responsibility to continue to develop skills in English Language, literacy and numeracy as appropriate to their discipline. This ongoing development will enable students to effectively participate in their course and graduate as competent professionals.

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