The Research Thesis unit enables students to undertake independent research. Students design the research project and complete a thesis at AQF Level 9 guided and supported by expert academic supervisors registered with VU Research. Successful completion of the unit is the means by which students—working closely with their supervisor(s)—demonstrate their ability to plan and execute a substantial research project culminating in a significant contribution to knowledge via an AQF Level 9 thesis. The availability of 12, 24, 36 or 48 thesis units is for course administrative purposes and will allow students to enrol at a full-time or part-time mode, and if need be at the same time as non-thesis units. Thus, the availability of 12, 24, 36 or 48 thesis units will enable each student to appropriately progress in their degree.

Unit details

Online Self-Paced
Study level:
Credit points:
Unit code:

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Critically review research principles, methods and theory applicable to their field of learning;  
  2. Critically review relevant and current scholarly literature/s relating to the thesis topic;  
  3. Investigate, analyse, evaluate and synthesise complex information in their field of study;  
  4. Conduct a substantial independent research project under supervision with a high level of personal autonomy and accountability; and  
  5. Present a coherent and sustained argument and be able to disseminate research results to specialist and non-specialist audiences.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Presentation 10-16 page proposal & 20 minute oral presentation outlining research. Pass/Fail
Review Thesis draft; 20 minute presentation; summary paper of no more than 5 pages. Pass/Fail
Research Thesis Thesis (25,000-50,000 words) Pass/Fail
The Research Thesis will be assessed by two expert examiners from an appropriate area of expertise.

Where to next?

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following courses. Refer to the course page for information on how to apply for the course.

VU takes care to ensure the accuracy of this unit information, but reserves the right to change or withdraw courses offered at any time. Please check that unit information is current with the Student Contact Centre.