BioSciences Honours Research Project

Subject BIOL40001 (2016)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2016.

Credit Points: 25
Level: 4 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2016:

Semester 1, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period 29-Feb-2016 to 29-May-2016
Assessment Period End 24-Jun-2016
Last date to Self-Enrol 11-Mar-2016
Census Date 31-Mar-2016
Last date to Withdraw without fail 06-May-2016

Semester 2, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period 25-Jul-2016 to 23-Oct-2016
Assessment Period End 18-Nov-2016
Last date to Self-Enrol 05-Aug-2016
Census Date 31-Aug-2016
Last date to Withdraw without fail 23-Sep-2016

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: Distribution of time between specific tasks will be decided in negotiation with the supervisor, but an overall weekly commitment of 10 hours per week (per 12.5 point loading) is expected.
Total Time Commitment:

This subject is an individual research project and weekly contact hours will vary depending on the nature of the project. Students should discuss this with their supervisor but as a guide, a student enrolled in a 12.5 point research project subject would be expected to be engaged in their research for an average of 10 hours per week.


Students must satisfy the requirements for entry into the Bachelor of Science (Degree with Honours)

Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support:


Dr Mike Bayly


Subject Overview:

This subject is part of a sequence that together constitute the 75-point research project offered through the Bachelor of Science (Degree with Honours) stream in BioSciences. The subject involves laboratory or field-based experimental research in an area of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Genetics, Genomics and Developmental Biology, or Plant Biology. The research projects cover a broad range of research from molecular to population and evolutionary biology in micro-organisms, insects, plants and animals. The project will be based in the laboratory of an academic staff member in the School of BioSciences or an approved external supervisor, depending on the particular research project. The research project aims to develop a range of experimental and technical skills, a capacity to set goals and to design and plan experiments. Apart from the help and guidance from their supervisor(s) each student also has a committee, which provides additional help and expertise, including advice on design of the research project. This committee and supervisor(s) are responsible for assessment of the research project subject. The subject also provides students with skills and knowledge for understanding original research and enhanced written and oral communication skills.

Learning Outcomes:

Objectives of this subject are for students to:

  • understand the way in which experiments are designed, communicated and interpreted;
  • extend their abilities in oral and written scientific communication;
  • gain the ability to read and assimilate specific research papers and to understand how the research reported relates to the broad field of biological sciences;
  • acquire experience in planning and executing laboratory or field-based experimental research;
  • develop effective skills in data collection and analysis, and postulating testable hypotheses based on this data.

The subject involves experimental research under the direction of a supervisor.


The assessment outlined here applies to the entire 75 point research project, of which this subject is just one part.

A research plan of a maximum 1000 words, due early in the first semester of the research project (0%, hurdle requirement). A literature Review of a maximum 3000 words, due during the first semester of the research project (10%). An oral presentation on the research project, 30 mins including questions due toward the end of the final semester of the research project (10%). A research thesis of up to 10,000 words due at the end of the final semester of the research project (75%). Benchmark - supervisor grade based on performance during the research project, finalised at completion of the research project (5%).

Prescribed Texts: None
Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

This subject should provide students with the opportunity to develop the following generic skills:

  • the ability to evaluate scientific literature;
  • the ability to use conceptual models to assess experimental data;
  • the ability to conduct research;
  • the capacity to articulate their knowledge and understanding in written and oral presentations;
  • the capacity for high level written report presentation skills;
  • the capacity for oral communication and presentation skills;
  • time management and self-management skills.
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Honours Program - BioSciences

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