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Higher Degree Research Deferment of a Course Offer Procedure

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Section 1 - PURPOSE

(1) This Procedure specifies the steps required for a domestic or international commencing higher degree research (HDR) student requesting to defer an offer of admission in accordance with the deferment principles approved by the University.


(2) This Procedure applies to commencing domestic and international students entering into an approved higher degree research course of study at Macquarie University.

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Section 2 - POLICY

(3) Refer to the Graduate Research Admissions Policy.

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Section 3 - PROCEDURES

Part A - Deferment Criteria

(4) Commencing HDR students may request to defer their offer of admission to a subsequent enrolment period in the following circumstances:

  1. A HDR offer of admission has been received by the student; and
  2. The course of study for which they have been approved for admission is available in the subsequent enrolment period, including supervision and available resources/infrastructure for the research in accordance with the Graduate Research Admissions Policy.

(5) Commencing HDR students may only request to defer their study commencement to the next available enrolment period, up to a maximum of one (1) calendar year (12 months) in circumstances outlined in clause 6.

(6) Commencing HDR students can defer their study commencement date, subject to clause 4 and 5, in the following circumstances:

  1. The student demonstrates circumstances which have an impact upon the student's commencement in the prescribed enrolment period; or
  2. The student failed to achieve the stipulated conditions on the offer letter.

(7) Deferment may be extended by an additional year (total of two (2) years deferment), subject to clause 4 and 5, if the student:

  1. is required to serve mandatory military service for a duration of over one calendar year, as required by their home country; or
  2. can demonstrate compassionate or compelling circumstances which have an impact upon the student's commencement in the prescribed enrolment period.

Deferral due to compassionate or compelling circumstances

(8) Compassionate or compelling circumstances are generally those beyond the control of the student and which have an impact upon the student's course progress or wellbeing. These could include, but are not limited to:

  1. serious illness or injury; or
  2. bereavement of close family members such as parents or grandparents; or
  3. major political upheaval or natural disaster in the home country requiring emergency travel and this has impacted on the student's studies; or
  4. a traumatic experience which could include:
    1. witnessing or being the victim of a serious crime, and this has impacted on the student; or
    2. involvement in, or witnessing of a serious accident; or
  5. inability to begin studying on the course commencement date due to delay in receiving a student visa.

(9) Applications for deferral of an offer based on compassionate or compelling circumstances must be supported by documentary evidence at the time of submission which should meet the expectations of clauses (11) to (15) under the Evidence sub-section of the Special Consideration Procedure.

Part B - Deferment Process

(10) Commencing HDR students must request deferment by:

  1. contacting the Graduate Research Academy by e-mail notification to;
  2. confirming new intake/year of admissions; and
  3. providing reasons for deferment. If the course offer has been accepted and a student visa has been granted, documentary evidence must be provided to support the deferment request.

(11) If students wish to be considered for a different course following a deferment period, a new application will be required for assessment.

(12) Students must accept and enrol into the deferred offer by completing the instructions stated in the approved deferment notification from the University.

Part C - Responsibilities and Required Actions

Graduate Research Operations Manager

(13) The Graduate Research Operations Manager must ensure that all deferment information, including deferment criteria, timelines, and application systems are updated, and published in a timely manner.

(14) The Graduate Research Operations Manager may review applications for deferment if a student requests a deferral for longer than one (1) calendar year due to compassionate or compelling circumstances.

Graduate Research Officers

(15) Graduate Research Officers will receive and process deferment requests, and assess deferment requests in accordance with the deferment criteria.

(16) Graduate Research Officers are responsible for:

  1. updating admission records to create deferred offers for students who have made a successful deferment request;
  2. notifying students of the outcome of their deferment request; and
  3. issuing new offer letters, including acceptance and enrolment instructions, to the students who have deferred.
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Section 4 - GUIDELINES

(17) Nil.

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(18) Definitions specific to this Procedure are contained in the Graduate Research Admissions Policy.