The University of Newcastle, Australia
Available in 2020

Course handbook


HIST4080 is the second part of the thesis component of the History Honours year, the other component being HIST4070.

The honours thesis gives students the opportunity to put the skills they have acquired over the course of their undergraduate studies to practice in the form of a substantial research-driven project. This project can be in one of three formats: 1) Scholarly; 2) Work-Integrated Learning; and,

3) Creative/Digital.

The Scholarly option involves a 15,000-word thesis on a topic determined in consultation with a supervisor with appropriate expertise. The thesis is expected to engage critically with recent scholarship in the field, offer a systematic and comprehensive account of the topic, and embody the standards of argumentation, writing and referencing in the field.

The Work-Integrated Learning option allows students to undertake a substantial research-based project for, or in collaboration with, an approved workplace wholly or largely dedicated to issues of concern to the discipline. Students compile a 12,000-word portfolio documenting the findings and outcomes of the project. Additionally, students produce a description of the workplace and its key characteristics, to be endorsed by the workplace supervisor as true and accurate (500 words), as well as a reflective journal with weekly entries (2,500 words). Identifying an external partner and negotiating terms is the responsibility of the student.

The Creative/Digital option enables students to engage in practice-led research resulting in a creative work or, alternatively, to use various media formats to develop and communicate their research. The work undertaken under this option is expected to be a substantial individual research effort within the chosen discipline and requires pre-approval by the supervisor. The thesis will consist of a creative/digital portfolio equivalent to 12,000 words, accompanied by a 3,000-word reflective statement outlining the background, aims, methods and theoretical foundation of the research.

The course is intended to develop and strengthen professional skills, challenge students intellectually and round off undergraduate studies with higher-level independent studies which will be useful in many fields of future endeavour.

Availability2020 Course Timetables


  • Semester 2 - 2020
  • Semester 1 - 2020

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Design a research project utilising skills developed over the course of the honours program;

2. Demonstrate advanced disciplinary and/or interdisciplinary Humanities research skills;

3. Apply relevant theories and methods to carry out an extended independent research, creative or digital project;

4. Engage in Humanities-based research with an awareness of how the Humanities contributes to cultural and work-based debates around topical socio-cultural and political issues.

5. Formulate an extended critical argument drawing on discipline and/or interdisciplinary knowledge;

6. Demonstrate advanced skills in communicating research.


Individual research project to be conceived and developed in consultation with the student's supervisor.


To enrol into this course students must be active in the following programs:

- Bachelor of Arts (Honours) [10214], or

- Bachelor of Social Science (Honours) [10726], or

- Bachelor of Arts (Honours) [40209].

Assumed knowledge

At least a credit average performance in History courses as a major sequence.

Assessment items

Thesis: Thesis (100%)

Contact hours


Individual Supervision

Face to Face On Campus 1 hour(s) per Week for 12 Weeks starting in week 1

ISV (Individual Supervision): Face to Face on campus or via Zoom videoconferencing