PhD Scholarships in Computer Science and IT

The School of Computer Science and IT is offering PhD scholarships to high achieving research students. For more information about these projects, see the further info section below.

Value and duration

The scholarships are valued at up to $25,000 per annum for three years (with a possibility of a six months extension). International candidates may be eligible for a tuition waiver.

Eligibility

To be eligible for these scholarships you must:

  • have an undergraduate or a masters degree in the area of Computer Science or related discipline, with outstanding grades
  • meet the entry requirements for the Doctor of Philosophy
  • show evidence of research ability — e.g. an honours degree, a minor thesis, some publication, or a well-developed preliminary research proposal, developed under the guidance of the supervisor
  • have an interest in cross-disciplinary research and ability to work in a team.

How to apply

  1. Identify the research project (below) you would like to work on.
  2. Email the project supervisor and express your interest.
  3. With approval from the project supervisor, submit your PhD (Computer Science) application.

Open date

Applications are now open.

Close date

Applications will close when a candidate is selected.

Research projects

PhD scholarships are available for PhD research in the following projects.

Spatio-temporal Prediction and Interactive Data Explorations

Supervisor

Dr Flora Salim

Number of Scholarships available

One

Summary

In response to the urgent need for more site specific and vertical environmental information to inform the design of sustainable architecture, this project investigates the use of Micro Air Vehicles (drones) equipped with diverse lightweight sensing equipment to gather data including atmospheric measurements and building temperatures and reflectivity.

The team of researchers and PhD students from the Spatial Information Architecture Laboratory in the School of Architecture and Design, the School of Aerospace, Mechanical and Material Engineering and the School of Computer Science and IT will research a cloud-based computing framework to handle very large volumes of data collected with drones over extended time periods and locations with the aim of being able to map this back into visualisations and design models to inform architecture, landscape and urban design. This will generate new knowledge about the safe capture, management and application of big data in sustainable city design.

This PhD candidate, from computer science background, will enrol in the RMIT School of Computer Science and Information Technology. The candidate will investigate spatio-temporal prediction techniques, developed by the candidate, for predicting weather and wind phenomena using data collected from drones, and develop an interactive data exploration and visual analytics platform for users to discover actionable knowledge. The candidate needs to deal with the data sparsity and uncertainty issues in multi-dimensional sensor readings from drones, and investigate techniques that enable interactive data explorations over sensor data captured from drones. Dr. Flora Salim will provide primary supervision.

Contact

Email Dr Flora Salim, flora.salim@rmit.edu.au for further information.

Find out more about this project.

User-Adaptive Search and Evaluation for Complex Information-Seeking Tasks

Supervisor

Associate Professor Lawrence Cavedon

Number of Scholarships available

One

Summary

This PhD project will be part of a project involving a world-leading team of Information Retrieval researchers from RMIT University and the University of Melbourne, in collaboration with industry partner SEEK, Australia's leading company providing online job-search services.

The project will focus on developing evaluation methods to understand and characterise search engine users and their situation within complex, multi-faceted search tasks, with job-search being an example. While evaluation of web search engine effectiveness is relatively well understood, measuring information retrieval performance in the context of complex tasks with heterogeneous users is a largely neglected problem.

This project plans to mine user-specific characteristics and situations from complex profiles and interaction logs for online information services run by the industry partner, SEEK. The new techniques are intended to better understand task-oriented search, and have the potential to reinvent the user experience for complex search tasks.

Interested students must have a degree in Computer Science or related field. Some background in Information Retrieval, particularly IR Evaluation, and strong Statistics is beneficial.

Students applying to Australian PhD programs require a minimum of 4 years of previous tertiary study, with a minor research project component that includes a thesis/report of approximately 10,000 words.

The scholarship is for 3 years and provides a stipend of approximately AU$25,000.

International students are welcome to apply although international tuition fees may apply, however, there is a possibility that such fees would be waived.

Contact

Email Associate Professor Lawrence Cavedon, lawrence.cavedon@rmit.edu.au for further information.

Data-driven Optimisation for Long-term Cloud Service Composition

Supervisor

Dr Kai Qin and Professor Athman Bouguettaya

Number of Scholarships available

One

Summary

Data-driven optimisation is a novel optimisation paradigm which searches for optimal solutions under the guidance of useful information learnt from historical search experiences using machine learning techniques. Search experiences in one problem can be used to facilitate solving other problems via knowledge transfer. This project will develop effective and efficient data-driven optimisation techniques for the selection and composition of cloud services under a long-term economic model-based framework. It aims to assist IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) consumers in optimising their selection of IaaS providers to minimise their long-term costs while meeting their QoS (Quality of Service) expectations, and also to assist IaaS providers in optimising their selection of IaaS requests to maximise their long-term revenue while meeting their consumers' QoS expectations.

The outcomes of this project will lead to an economically viable cloud market facilitating cloud providers to maximise their long-term revenue while aiding cloud consumers to minimise their long-term costs.

Applicants must have:

  • evidence of research ability, e.g. an honours degree, a minor thesis, publication(s), or a well-developed preliminary research proposal, developed under the guidance of the supervisor
  • a strong interest in one or more of the following areas: optimisation, evolutionary computation, machine learning, and cloud computing
  • programming skills using Matlab, C/C++ or Java.

Contact

Email Dr Kai Qin, kai.qin@rmit.edu.au for further information.

Trust in Sensor Cloud Services

Supervisor

Professor Athman Bouguettaya

Number of Scholarships available

One

Summary

Sensor cloud service is the next generation platform for Internet of Things services delivery and management. A sensor cloud service employs sensors for data collection, clouds for data storage and processing, and services paradigm for data delivery. Security and privacy are critical issues in sensor cloud services, considering the dispersity, diversity, and heterogeneity of these services. Trust is well acknowledged as an efficient means to preserve security and privacy. The aim of this project is to design a novel and innovative framework for ascertaining trust in sensor cloud services. A trust management system will be specifically implemented by means of a set of techniques that deals with the end-to-end establishment, management, and propagation of trust in sensor cloud services. Additionally the important issue of services trustworthiness bootstrapping will be investigated.

The successful applicant will be required to work in a collaborative environment and publish research outcomes in prestigious international conferences and journals in service computing and Internet technologies, under the guidance of senior and associate supervisors.

Applicants must have:

  • evidence of research ability, e.g., an honours or research master’s degree (with a graduate thesis), and research publications
  • a strong interest in one or more of the following areas: service computing, trust, cloud computing, and IoT
  • programming skills using Matlab, C++, C# or Java.

This scholarship is worth $25,000 per annum for up to three years. International candidates may be eligible for a fee waiver.

Contact

Email Dr Hai Dong, hai.dong@rmit.edu.au for further information.

Top-Up Scholarship in Team Behaviour Modelling

Supervisor

Associate Professor John Thangarajah

Number of Scholarships available

One

Summary

The aim of this project is to develop a methodology and notation for specifying and designing complex team oriented strategic behaviours. While initially focused on modelling military operations, the methodology can be applied to any complex coordinated system of interacting autonomous entities in the simulated or real world. While there are existing software and systems engineering techniques for specifying and designing safety and security critical systems, no such methodology exist for specifying coordinated tactical behaviour of mixed human and autonomous systems. This research collaboration aims to develop such techniques which lie at the intersection of software engineering, systems engineering and artificial intelligence. The purpose is to lay the ground work for the systematic specification of intelligent systems. Although it is expected the initial application will be for the simulation of complex air operations, it is envisaged that the methodology can be applied to the specification of autonomous behaviour in other (non-military) domains.

Over the last two years, researchers at RMIT University, in collaboration with DSTO, have investigated a Tactical Development Framework (TDF) where the focus was on modelling tactics from an individual agents point of view and did not consider teams of agents or team tactics as it wasn’t critical to submarine application domain. However, team modelling is critical in the area of aerospace simulation. In this project we will extend TDF to incorporate models of teams and team tactics so it can be used in air combat simulations. This requires explicit modelling of team hierarchies, team goals, team plans, team coordination, task delegation etc., and these are currently not captured in TDF. We will investigate the existing approaches to team-based modelling, such as the seminal work of Tambe and team-oriented agent implementations such as Machinetta that have been used in military simulations, and will adapt and extend the necessary concepts to fit within the TDF methodology. Our key aim is to capture the necessary information at the appropriate level of abstraction such that it is easily understood and altered by the domain experts, but is also expressed in sufficient detail to allow pushing into various simulation environments such as VBS3 and OneSAF

This is a top-up scholarship worth $5000 per year for up to 3 years. The ideal candidate is a student with an APA looking for a top-up.

Contact

Email Associate Professor John Thangarajah, john.thangarajah@rmit.edu.au for further information.

Contact

For further information about these scholarships and projects, email Associate Professor Xiaodong Li, xiaodong.li@rmit.edu.au.