Candidate Development Award (CDA)


Enrolment status Currently enrolled students
Student type Domestic students, International students
Level of study Higher Degree by Research
Study area All study areas
HDR funding type Travel Scholarship
Scholarship value Up to $5000
Opening date 1 January 2021
Closing date 1 December 2021


*****Due to the recent UQ travel advisory, the CDA is suspended until further notice.*****

The Candidate Development Award (CDA) is an award focusing on supporting HDR candidates who undertake a Graduate School approved placement and the skills development through this experience – skills that are transferable, cross-disciplinary, and professional. These skills will enhance employment opportunities after the degree.  

The CDA supports associated travel costs for UQ HDR candidates. Applicants should submit a reasonable budget to a maximum of $5,000 with a justification for why the funds are required.


  • When preparing your budget, consider the best value-for-money, and fit-for-purpose accommodation (eg., not staying at luxury accomodation).
  • Applications are awarded at the discretion of the Dean, Graduate School or delegate. The Dean’s decision is final.
  • Funding is subject to Graduate School budget availability.


*****Due to the recent UQ travel advisory, the CDA is suspended until further notice.*****

To be eligible, you must

  • have accepted an offer to undertake a Graduate School approved Placement.
  • commence the Placement within three months from the date of the CDA application.
  • have no overdue milestone at the time of application.
  • not have previously held a UQ Graduate School International Travel Award (GSITA) or Candidate Development Award (CDA). Other travel grants are acceptable.

Additional benefits

*****Due to the recent UQ travel advisory, the CDA is suspended until further notice.*****

CDA covers up to a maximum of $5,000 for:

  • flights
  • accommodation
  • local transport (land travel) e.g., bus or train to and from placement organisation and the candidates temporary accommodation.
  • visa application fees

The CDA does NOT cover:

  • meals or incidentals
  • research-specific activities, such as lab visits, or visits to advisors.
  • conferences, seminars, workshops, symposiums, colloquiums, etc.

Before you get started

If this scholarship has rules, download and read them.

How to apply

*****Due to the recent UQ travel advisory, the CDA is suspended until further notice.*****

Before submitting your application, read the Application Guide

To submit your application, apply through my.UQ using the CDA form. You will need to attach:

  • CDA Application form (DOCX, 38.1 KB)
  • CDA Budget
  • Evidence of acceptance of the Graduate School issued Placement offer letter
  • Supporting documents (e.g., quotations of airfare and accomodation) in a format as outlined in the Application Guide.

Please ensure that all applications are complete with supporting documents otherwise there may be delays in evaluating your application.

Selection criteria

Travel should be specifically in support of a Graduate School approved HDR Placement: The Graduate School defines an HDR Placement as an industry experience with an approved project brief that spans between 30-40 working days (attend an info session). Travel must be reasonable, that is, value-for-money and fit-for-purpose. A justification must be given regarding why the travel award is necessary for the completion of the Placement.



Graduate School
(07) 3346 0503

Terms and conditions

*****Due to the recent UQ travel advisory, the CDA is suspended until further notice.*****

Read the following terms and conditions carefully. 

  • Applicants must have accepted an offer of a Graduate School approved Placement at time of application.
  • Any changes to the Placement commencement dates requires prior approval from the Graduate School. Failure to obtain the approval may forfeit the award. Retroactive changes will not be approved. 
  • Funding cannot be used to undertake an activity and travel that is essential to the completion of the thesis. This includes travel to meet with members of a candidate’s advisory team or to attend conferences.
  • Applicants must demonstrate that additional funds are available to supplement the award, if required.
  • Incomplete applications will not be considered; applicants are responsible for providing the required documentation and the Graduate School will not follow up with individuals.
  • Applicants who intend to commence their Placements immediately before, or at the time a milestone is due, must have requested an extension to the milestone prior to submission of the CDA application. 
  • Any unspent funds must be returned to the Graduate School.
  • It may take up to four weeks for the funds to be deposited into the nominated account after the application has been approved.
  • If the awardee does not successfully complete the full Placement, the awardee will be required to refund the CDA to the Graduate School.
  • Awardees are responsible for arranging appropriate UQ travel insurance.
  • Awardees must submit a Reconciled budget with scanned copies of airfare and accommodation receipts to the Graduate School within one month of their return.