The Honours Thesis is designed to be an educational experience that gives students the opportunity to conceptualise, design, implement and evaluate a specific research project. Unlike a Masters or Doctoral thesis, the Honours thesis is not expected to, although it may, contribute to a discipline's body of knowledge. The broad aim of the Honours thesis is to promote the development of the student as an independent researcher. The specific aims are to develop and use the knowledge and skills necessary to conduct a research project and present a formal written thesis. The student should generally be able to display the resourcefulness and academic rigour required of an independent researcher.

The thesis should be approximately 12,000 - 15,000 words in length and is expected to demonstrate a thorough familiarity with the literature in the relevant area, a sound understanding of the relevant concepts and, where appropriate, the application of relevant theory or method and ethics approval. The thesis requires independent supervised research. Students may extend areas of interest covered earlier in their academic career, but the work which constitutes the thesis must be entirely new. Students are required to certify that the substance of the thesis is their own work and supervisors are required to confirm that, to the best of their knowledge, this is the case. The thesis must have a clear hypothesis or objectives and develop well-documented arguments and/or data to support the hypothesis.

The thesis is supervised through individual regular consultations with an academic supervisor in a cognate discipline area to the thesis discipline area. The thesis is a formal piece of academic writing and is examined by two independent academics, who may be either from VU or external to the university, but is not the supervisor.  Each examiners' independent report is then tabled at a moderators' meeting with academics from across the discipline areas of humanities, social sciences and creative arts as appropriate. The final thesis mark is determined at this moderators' meeting. 

Unit details

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AHA5003 - Honours Thesis Part A

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Execute a research project with some independence  
  2. Demonstrate advanced understanding of a defined research problem  
  3. Demonstrate written communication skills necessary to present a clear and coherent exposition of knowledge and ideas in appropriate academic format  


Assessment type Description Grade
Thesis 12,000-15,000 word research thesis. 100%

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