Embedded Honours Models Structures Policy

Document Number000743
Date Approved14 June 2006
Date Last Amended3 October 2012

 This Policy has been replaced by Bachelor Honours Policy [000990] effective from 1 January 2013.

This Policy is however, still applicable to programs which haven't been reviewed by AQF.

For more information please contact policy@newcastle.edu.au

 

1.      Introduction

The AVCC fourth year honours programs Guidelines for Good Practice (1995) (1) point out: (i) that the primary goal of all Honours Programs should be research training, and (ii) that all Honours programs should contain a mix of advanced theory, professional training (where appropriate), research training, and a major research project (thesis). Where a program is awarded with Honours the program should contain a mix of the same elements.

For the purposes of this document a Thesis/Dissertation includes any project, dissertation or a comparable project in the visual or performing arts and the creative work resulting from that project, or a report of the outcomes of research undertaken;

2.      Ordinary Degrees

240 unit Generalist degree programs may only be awarded as an ordinary degree.

240 unit Structured or Fully Integrated degree undergraduate programs may be awarded 'with distinction' to those students who gain a GPA of 6.0 or over based on all studies undertaken in the program.

320 or 400 unit Structured or Fully Integrated degree undergraduate programs may be awarded 'with distinction' to those students who do not undertake the minimum Research Component listed in the Models below but gain a GPA of at least 6.0 based on all studies undertaken in the program.

3.     Embedded Honours

Only to be used for 320 unit Structured Single Degree/Double Degree programs or 320 or 400 unit Fully Integrated Single Degree programs.

3.1.     Structure

  1. The program is to contain a Research Component of at least 30 units which will include:
  2. 10 units or more research related courses (or the equivalent in multiple courses) at 3000 or higher level; and
  3. one research thesis/dissertation with a unit value of not less than 10 units which will report on one or more individual research projects at 4000/5000 level.
  4. The Research Component must be included as part of the prescribed or directed courses in the degree program.

3.2.     Eligibility

All students undertaking the program who have completed the requirements for admission to the relevant Bachelor degree of the University are eligible to be considered for the awarding of the degree with honours.

3.3.     Classes

  1. Class I
  2. Class II Division 1
  3. Class II Division 2

3.4.     Examining the Research Thesis/Dissertation

  1. There will be a minimum of 2 examiners of a research thesis/dissertation;
  2. At least one of the two examiners to be external to the School unless an external moderator is appointed by the Pro Vice-Chancellor to monitor the quality levels of theses/projects in the discipline. The moderator is to report through the PVC to the Academic Senate as part of the Faculty's annual report on programs;
  3. The supervisor is not to be an examiner. The supervisor shall provide a report to the program convenor when the thesis/dissertation is being submitted;
  4. The final mark will be an average of the two marks given by the examiners;
  5. If there is a difference of ten percentage points or more in the assessment between the two examiners, a third examiner is to be used (not the supervisor);
  6. In all cases where three examiners are used, the final mark shall be an average of the two closest marks except where there is disparity between the written report of the examiners and the mark awarded;
  7. The Faculty is to provide the student and examiners/moderators with the assessment criteria for all components of the award.

3.5.     Grading of the Award

Programs which use the GPA as a measure for determining honours shall grade honours as follows:

  1. A student may receive Class I if they have both a GPA of 6.0 or more in the 3000/4000/5000 level courses undertaken, and an average mark of 85 or over for the Research Component (minimum of 30 units).
  2. If a student fails to satisfy the criteria for Class I honours, they may be offered Class II.
    1. A student may receive Class II Division 1 provided they have either:
      • both a GPA of 6.0 or more in the 3000/4000/5000 level courses undertaken and an average mark of 75 or over for the Research Component (minimum of 30 units);
      • both a GPA of 5.5 or more in the 3000/4000/5000 level courses undertaken and an average mark of 85 or over for the Research Component (minimum of 30 units);
  3. If a student fails to satisfy the criteria for Class II Division 1 honours, they may be offered Class II Division 2
    1. A student may receive Class II Division 2: provided they have both a GPA of 5.5 or more in the 3000/4000/5000 level courses undertaken and an average mark of 65 or more for the Research Component (minimum of 30 units).

3.6.     Programs which use the WAM as a measure for determining honours shall grade on the WAM equivalent to the above grades as follows:

  1. A minimum WAM of 77 and a minimum mark of 75 in the research courses (at least 30 units) for Honours Class 1; a minimum WAM of 72 and a minimum mark of 65 in the research courses (at least 30 units) for Honours Class 11, Division 1; a minimum WAM of 67 and a minimum mark of 65 in the research courses (at least 30 units) for Honours Class 11, Division 2;
  2. Performance is based on a three year WAM where 2000, 3000 and 4000 level courses are weighted by 2, 3 and 4 respectively.

4.      Embedded + Honours

  1. The Embedded + Honours model is only to be used for 320 unit Structured Single Degree/Double Degree programs or 320 or 400 unit Fully Integrated Single Degree programs; and.
  2. cannot be used in conjunction with the Embedded Honours structure. Students who do not undertake the Research Component may only be awarded the degree at pass or “with distinction" levels.

4.1.     Structure

  1. The program is to contain a Research Component of at least 30 units which will include:
    1. 10 units or more research related courses (or the equivalent in multiple courses) at 3000 or higher level; and
    2. one research thesis/dissertation with a unit value of not less than 20 units which will report on one or more individual research projects at 4000/5000 level.
  2. The Research Component must be provided as an alternative to pass courses of the same unit value.

4.2.     Eligibility

  1. Students undertaking the program who have:
    1. achieved a GPA of 5.5 or more over the program to the point where the Research Component is integrated;
    2. achieved a GPA of 5.5 at either the 3000/4000 or 4000/5000 level of the program to the point where the Research Component is integrated; and
    3. have either been invited by or have had a written application approved by the Pro Vice-Chancellor responsible for the program;

are eligible to be considered for the awarding of the degree with honours.

4.3.     Classes

  1. Class I
  2. Class II Division 1
  3. Class II Division 2
  4. Class III

4.4.     Examining the Research Thesis/Dissertation

  1. There will be a minimum of 2 examiners of the research thesis /dissertation;
  2. At least one of the two examiners is to be external to the School unless an external moderator is appointed by the Pro Vice-Chancellor to monitor the quality levels of theses/projects in the discipline. The moderator is to report through the PVC to the Academic Senate as part of the Faculty's annual report on programs;
  3. The supervisor is not to be an examiner. The supervisor shall provide a report to the program convenor when the thesis/dissertation is being submitted;
  4. The final mark shall be an average of the two marks given by the examiners;
  5. If there is a difference of ten percentage points or more in the assessment between the two examiners, a third examiner is to be used (not the supervisor);
  6. In all cases where three examiners are used, the final mark shall be an average of the two closest marks except where there is disparity between the written report of the examiners and the mark awarded;
  7. The Faculty is to provide the student and examiners/moderators with the assessment criteria for all components of the award.

4.5.     Grading of the Award

  1. Class I: both a GPA of 6.0 or more in the 3000/4000/5000 level courses undertaken and an average mark of 85 or over for the Research Component (minimum of 30 units);
  2. If a student fails to satisfy the criteria for Class I honours, they may be offered Class II Division 1 provided they have either:
    1. both a GPA of 6.0 or  more in the 3000/4000/5000 level courses undertaken and an average mark of 75 or over for the Research Component (minimum of 30 units); or
    2. both a GPA of 5.5 or more in the 3000/4000/5000 level courses undertaken and an average mark of 85 or over for the Research Component (minimum of 30 units);
  3. If a student fails to satisfy the criteria for Class II Division 1 honours, they may be offered  Class II Division 2: provided they have:
    1. both a GPA of 5.5 or more in the 3000/4000/5000 level courses undertaken and an average mark of 65 or more for the Research Component (minimum of 30 units).
  4. If a student fails to satisfy the criteria for Class II Division 2 honours, they may be offered Class III provided they have:

a.  an average mark of 50 or over in the Research Component;

b.  a GPA of at least 4.0 calculated on all graded 3000/4000/5000 courses; and

c.  passed all 3000/4000/5000 courses of their approved program on the first attempt

4.6.     Programs which use the WAM as a measure for determining honours shall grade on the WAM equivalent to the above grades.

5.      Notes

(1)  This document has been superseded by the AVCC publication:  Principles for the provision of Education by Australian Universities.

 

Approval AuthorityAcademic Senate
Date Approved14 June 2006
Date Last Amended3 October 2012
Date for Review1 September 2014
Policy SponsorDeputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic)
Policy OwnerDirector, Centre for Teaching & Learning
Policy ContactDirector, Centre for Teaching & Learning
Amendment History

Policy re-published by advice from Kim Broadley - 14 February 2014

Notification added that this policy has been replaced by Bachelor Honours Policy [000990] effective from 1 January 2013, as approved under delegated authority AUB1 by President of Academic Senate on 3 October 2012.

Notification added that this policy is currently under review by Honours policy Working Party. 6 January 2011.

Amended to included Embedded (+) Honours Class III, approved by Academic Senate 1 December 2010 (AS10:152)

Amendment to grading of award from 'with merit' to 'with distinction', Academic Senate 3 December 2008.

Amended and reformatted December 2008