Fields of Research

Field of Research codes (FoRs) are managed by the Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification (ANZSRC) and are used to categorise research, researchers and their outputs into specific disciplines. FoR codes have recently undergone review and consultation across the sector, which resulted in the release of revised and updated codes in June 2020.

Throughout 2020 and 2021 these new codes are being implemented across relevant systems, for example, internal facing systems such CRO, Research Master, and the Notice to Submit (NTS) form, and external systems such as those used by the ARC, NHMRC, and ABS.

Field of Research disciplines are divided into three ‘nested’ categories of six, four and two digits. For example:

  • the six-digit FoR code, 410102 – Ecological impacts of climate change and ecological adaptation,
  • nests into the four-digit FoR code, 4101 – Climate change impacts and adaptation,
  • which nests into the two-digit parent code, 41 – Environmental Sciences.

FoRs are assigned by researchers in the Charles Sturt University Research Output repository (CRO). When assigning FoR codes, researchers should consider:

  • Personal FoRs – Select up to three FoRs and apportion each to best reflect the focus of your research (minimum 10%, and must add up to 100%)
  • Outputs and Activity FoRs – Select up to three FoRs and apportion each to best reflect the focus of the research output or activity (minimum 20%, and must add up to 100%). These FoRs do not need to be exactly the same as the personal FoRs.

Note that the Excellence in Research for Australia program (ERA) uses the four-digit FoR level. However, researchers should apply six-digit codes (where appropriate) to increase specificity.

Strategic priorities

When selecting FoR codes for your research, consider alignment of FoR codes with Faculty, School and Research Centre strategic research priorities and pathways, if appropriate.

You can download the 2020 FoR codes spreadsheet, or visit the Stats NZ interactive version if you prefer. Both versions contain mapping, definitions and exclusions information to assist you in understanding how the 2008 codes translate to the 2020 codes.

During this time of transition from 2008 to 2020 FoR codes you may still be required to use 2008 codes in various systems.

The CRO Guide offers further information on how to add FoR codes to content within CRO.