Credit points


Campus offering

No unit offerings are currently available for this unit


PSYC617 Thesis-Part 2

Teaching organisation

1 hour per week of individual supervision.

Unit rationale, description and aim

The practice of psychology is based on the scientist-practitioner model, and as such, knowledge and critical analysis of research is essential for evidence-based practice. This unit is the third of three research units and continues the student's research in an area of relevance to the specialisation stream in which the student is enrolled. By the end of this stage, students should have completed a thorough written literature review and have made substantial progress in the acquisition and/or processing of data. The main aim of this unit is to produce an empirical paper in an area of psychology related to the student's specialist stream (Clinical or Eductional and Developmental).

Learning outcomes

To successfully complete this unit you will be able to demonstrate you have achieved the learning outcomes (LO) detailed in the below table.

Each outcome is informed by a number of graduate capabilities (GC) to ensure your work in this, and every unit, is part of a larger goal of graduating from ACU with the attributes of insight, empathy, imagination and impact.

Explore the graduate capabilities.

On successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

LO1 - Complete a substantial original research study using appropriate methodologies (GA3, GA4, GA5, GA6, GA7, GA8, GA9, GA10); 

LO2 - Present the completed research project in a competent manner at an appropriate research forum (GA5,GA9); 

Graduate attributes

GA3 - apply ethical perspectives in informed decision making

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

GA5 - demonstrate values, knowledge, skills and attitudes appropriate to the discipline and/or profession 

GA6 - solve problems in a variety of settings taking local and international perspectives into account

GA7 - work both autonomously and collaboratively 

GA8 - locate, organise, analyse, synthesise and evaluate information 

GA9 - demonstrate effective communication in oral and written English language and visual media 

GA10 - utilise information and communication and other relevant technologies effectively.


In this final stage students will continue writing their thesis and interpreting their data, under supervision, and make a public presentation of their research. 

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

The teaching strategy for this unit is, primarily, meetings with the supervisor, research team and other relevant staff members, and research activities as recommended by the supervisor. Contact time and  mode are negotiated within supervision.  Attendance at the School’s research colloquia is expected in order to broaden exposure to a range of research methodologies. Approximately 300 hours of study time is required for this unit including project management, review writing, and associated activities.  

Assessment strategy and rationale

A range of assessment procedure will be used to meet the unit objectives consistent with University assessment requirements. The progress report will be completed by the supervisor and is an opportunity for the student and supervisor to review the progress made over the semester and ensure correct procedures have been followed (such as return of data in accordance with HREC agreement, data collection obligations have been met, etc). The student will present their project for peer review at the School’s annual research conference. This allows the opportunity for the student to demonstrate the ability to present research methodology and results concisely orally. Submission of an empirical research paper allows the opportunity to demonstrate the ability to write a formal research report. In order to ensure objectivity, the report will be examined by 2 independent examiners. 

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Presentation of a poster or oral report of completed research at school’s conference or presentation session at end of semester 

Develops capacity of student to present an oral paper for peer review.



GA5, GA9 

Research paper in publishable form.(5000 words) 

Provides the opportunity to develop the capacity to write a formal report on the research project. 



GA3, GA4, GA5, GA6, GA7, GA8, GA9, GA10 

Written Progress Report by supervisor:  

Provides an opportunity for the student to review progress and demonstrate that correct procedures have been followed. 



GA3, GA4, GA5, GA6, GA8, GA9, GA10 

Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC) sign-off 



GA3, GA4, GA5, GA6, GA7, GA8, GA9, GA10 

Representative texts and references

American Psychological Association. (2010). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.). Washington, DC: Author. 

Supervisors may recommend texts and peer reviewed articles relevant to your topic. 

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