Scholarship details

Study levels


Student type

Future students and Current students

Study area

Science, technology and engineering and mathematics

Application dates

Applications close
30 April 2021

What you'll receive

  • The successful applicant will receive a living allowance of $28,597 per annum for three years, indexed annually.
  • The scholarship is for full-time study and can be used to support living costs.
  • A six-month extension to the scholarship is also possible, subject to approval by QUT.
  • A successful international student will be considered for a HDR tuition fee sponsorship, if successful in receiving the scholarship.


You must:

Desired skills

The applicants would ideally have an interest in and experience with working on robot arms especially in the areas of positioning/reaching, control, perception and localization. Skills in Robot Operating System (ROS), OpenCV and machine learning packages will be critical. The ideal candidate will have good communication and writing skills, and the ability to work well in a large, interdisciplinary team with a variety of stakeholders ranging from researchers to surgeons.

The provision of a scholarship is conditional on successful application and admission to the Doctor of Philosophy course. Eligibility for admission to a research degree is determined by the Graduate Research Centre.

Applicants will be assessed against the admission criteria:

Due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, preference and priority will be given to:

  • Australian and New Zealand students
  • resident international students

Exceptional International applicants will be considered.

How to apply

Send your application, with your curriculum vitae to Professor Michael Milford. Applications will be accepted until the scholarship is awarded, but applications will be assessed starting 1 December 2020.

What happens next?

Future students

You will be invited to submit your application via QUT's Application Portal:

  1. Follow the steps to apply.
  2. You must submit your expression of interest in a timely manner.
  3. Indicate your interest in this scholarship by nominating Professor Michael Milford as principal supervisor and include the name of this scholarship in the financial details section.
  4. If your EOI is accepted you will be invited to submit a full application including a research proposal to finalise your application.

The provision of a scholarship is conditional on successful application and admission to the Doctor of Philosophy course. Eligibility for admission to a research degree is determined and processed by the Graduate Research Centre.

Current students

Professor Michael Milford will provide the outcome of your scholarship application.


The conditions for retaining the scholarship are set out in the rules of the QUT Postgraduate Research Award (Domestic) or QUT Postgraduate Research Award (International).

About the scholarship

Project Title: High precision robotic surgery for the shoulder

Project summary

The success of shoulder reconstruction surgery relies in large part on the accuracy and repeatability of key processes including cutting, drilling and implant positioning. Performing these tasks is critically reliant on integrating information from multiple sources – surgeon, pre-surgical scans, live surgical observations – and from a range of sensing modalities including vision and potentially ultrasound. This project aims to develop a robot surgical assistant that enables improved surgical outcomes for shoulder surgery.

A PhD scholarship is available at the Centre for Joint Biomechanics in Brisbane, Australia in developing novel robotic surgeons. The project is part of an Industrial Transformation Training Centre (ITTC) funded by the Australian Research Council.

The centre aims to advance personalised surgical treatment of joints by integrating computer tools for pre-surgical planning and decision making, computer simulation systems and robot surgeons for surgical training and operation. The successful PhD candidate will develop a high capability robotic surgeon that is capable of precise implant positioning, cutting and burring operations in the shoulder joint.

The project requires a background in robotics, especially in robot arms. Experience in computer vision, machine learning, ultrasound, biomechanics, biomedical science, and physiology knowledge and clinical imaging are desirable.

The PhD student will be supervised by Professor Michael Milford and Professor Peter Pivonka. The PhD student will be enrolled through QUT and will be a member of the Centre for Robotics and the Centre for Biomedical Technologies. The centres comprise interdisciplinary teams of researchers with skills spanning robotics, machine learning, computer vision, imaging, physiology, motor control, biomechanics, and computational modelling.

The successful applicant will work closely with a team of international experts collaborating on an Australian Research Council Industrial Transformation Training Centre. On a day to day basis, supervision will be provided by Professor Michael Milford, Deputy Director of the QUT Centre for Robotics, and research engineers and postdocs associated with the project.

You will have the opportunity to:

  • work with a team of national and international experts located in Australia.
  • interact with the orthopaedic industry, either locally or internationally.
  • develop multidisciplinary skills across robotics, orthopaedics, engineering, and mathematics


The student will be based in the Science and Engineering Faculty at Queensland University of Technology, Gardens Point, Brisbane.

Start date

The successful applicants are expected to commence by 31 January 2021 (or earlier, subject to negotiation).

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