Project Title

Predicting clinical outcomes in young people at high risk of psychosis

Project Type



Research interests of the research team offering the project

  • Psychosis risk.
  • Prediction of outcomes in high-risk youth.
  • Aetiology of psychosis.
  • Preventive treatments for young people at high risk of psychosis.

Details of the project

A PhD position is available to support the Prescient research project, a US National Institutes of Health-funded project which is part of the Accelerating Medicines Partnership in Schizophrenia (AMP-SCZ).

The primary aim of Prescient and AMP-SCZ is to develop prediction models for clinical outcomes in the ultra-high risk for psychosis clinical population, using multimodal data so that new preventive treatments can be developed. Further information on Orygen’s role in leading this project can be found here. You can also read about it on the study website and also on the websites of the National Institute of Mental Health and Foundation for the National Institutes of Health.

The precise focus of the PhD is flexible. However, it will be concentrated on elucidating predictors and mechanisms associated with the onset of psychosis and other clinical outcomes in young people at heightened risk of psychotic disorder.

The PhD student will have access to a range of data types being collected in this project, including clinical, neurocognitive, neuroimaging, neurophysiological, fluid biospecimen, digital phenotype, and speech/facial expression data. They will be part of a large team working on the project at Orygen, along with national and international collaborators.

Project references

  1. Gordon JA, Heinssen RK. Collaborative approaches to the clinical high-risk state: from data to mechanism to intervention. Biol Psychiatry. 2020 Aug;15;88(4):287-288. Available from:
  2. Elie D. Massive NIH–industry project opens portals to target validation. Nature. 27 February 2019. Available from:
  3. Gordon JA. NIMH supports evidence-based treatments for schizophrenia: a response to Torrey et al. J Clin Psychiatry. 2019;80(1):18com12597a. Available from:

Scholarships and fees

A stipend of $32,400 per year is available for this PhD project.

Scholarships are available through the University of Melbourne – find out more here. Other scholarship opportunities may also be available but are highly competitive, so please speak to the contact person below for further details.

Information on fees for domestic and international students is available here.

How to apply

  1. Read information for future students here and check your eligibility here.
  2. Read our frequently asked questions here.
  3. Liaise with, and gain the support of, the supervisor/s. Please contact them using the details below and attach a copy of your CV and university transcript(s). 
  4. Once you’ve gained supervisor support, follow the steps outlined by the University of Melbourne here. You can go straight to Step 3. 

You are strongly encouraged to submit your application as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.


Professor Barnaby Nelson
[email protected]