PUB HLTH 7119 - MPH Dissertation (Full-Time)

North Terrace Campus - Semester 2 - 2022

The dissertation can be the final requirement of the MPH and should therefore reflect what the student has learned from the core and elective course work of the degree program. Unless exempted by the School of Public Health, the dissertation will take the form of a paper suitable for submission to an appropriate peer reviewed journal. The content of this paper must reflect the research topic. The successful completion of this paper fulfils the requirements for a dissertation. * Exemptions will be rare but may be necessary in some circumstances to avoid significant disadvantage to a particular student.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code PUB HLTH 7119
    Course MPH Dissertation (Full-Time)
    Coordinating Unit Public Health
    Term Semester 2
    Level Postgraduate Coursework
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 12
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange N
    Prerequisites Completion of PUB HLTH 7300OL and MPH coursework
    Incompatible PUB HLTH 7133A, PUB HLTH 7133B, PUB HLTH 7134A, PUB HTLH 7122A, PUB HTLH 7122B, PUB HLTH 7153
    Restrictions Available to MPH students only
    Course Description The dissertation can be the final requirement of the MPH and should therefore reflect what the student has learned from the core and elective course work of the degree program. Unless exempted by the School of Public Health, the dissertation will take the form of a paper suitable for submission to an appropriate peer reviewed journal. The content of this paper must reflect the research topic. The successful completion of this paper fulfils the requirements for a dissertation.
    * Exemptions will be rare but may be necessary in some circumstances to avoid significant disadvantage to a particular student.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Professor Peng Bi

    Course Coordinator: Prof. Peng Bi

    Location: Level 4, Rundle Mall Plaza, 50 Rubndle Mall, Adelaide. 5000

    Phone: +61 8 8313 3583


    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    On successful completion of this course the student will be able to
    1 Successfully collaborate with colleagues and supervisor(s) in the development, design and execution of a research project.
    2 Demonstrate the skills required to conduct independent research, including the ability to conduct effective literature searches,
    critically appraise the literature, and compile information.
    3 Select and use an appropriate qualitative and/or quantitative research methodology to investigate a research problem or issue relevant to public health.
    4 Identify and communicate the ethical dimensions of research and demonstrate the skills and attitudes of an ethical researcher.
    5 Develop an understanding of public health competencies by undertaking professional development activities and reflecting upon the experience.
    6 Use appropriate communication style and terminology to present research findings effectively in oral and written forms.

    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)

    Attribute 1: Deep discipline knowledge and intellectual breadth

    Graduates have comprehensive knowledge and understanding of their subject area, the ability to engage with different traditions of thought, and the ability to apply their knowledge in practice including in multi-disciplinary or multi-professional contexts.


    Attribute 2: Creative and critical thinking, and problem solving

    Graduates are effective problems-solvers, able to apply critical, creative and evidence-based thinking to conceive innovative responses to future challenges.


    Attribute 3: Teamwork and communication skills

    Graduates convey ideas and information effectively to a range of audiences for a variety of purposes and contribute in a positive and collaborative manner to achieving common goals.

    1, 4, 5

    Attribute 4: Professionalism and leadership readiness

    Graduates engage in professional behaviour and have the potential to be entrepreneurial and take leadership roles in their chosen occupations or careers and communities.

    1-3, 5

    Attribute 5: Intercultural and ethical competency

    Graduates are responsible and effective global citizens whose personal values and practices are consistent with their roles as responsible members of society.

    1, 2, 4

    Attribute 6: Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural competency

    Graduates have an understanding of, and respect for, Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander values, culture and knowledge.


    Attribute 7: Digital capabilities

    Graduates are well prepared for living, learning and working in a digital society.

    2, 3, 5, 6

    Attribute 8: Self-awareness and emotional intelligence

    Graduates are self-aware and reflective; they are flexible and resilient and have the capacity to accept and give constructive feedback; they act with integrity and take responsibility for their actions.

  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    Access to bibliographic databases and peer-reviewed journals and relevant software for analysis.
    Recommended Resources
    Additional course-related material will be available through MyUni.
    Online Learning
    General information about University computer laboratories
    is available at

    As an enrolled student, you will have access to the University’s on-line  teaching facilities. This is an implementation of the Blackboard system called MyUni. MyUni is accessible from the University of Adelaide’s home-page: You will need your student login name and a password.If you do not have access, then either you are not enrolled or the  administrators of MyUni do not know of your enrolment.

    Please call Ask Adelaide on 8313 5208 (University extension 35208) or the IT help desk on 8313 3000 (University extension 33000) for assistance with MyUni difficulties. 

    Course materials will be placed on MyUni. Note also that Announcements about a course are often made on the relevant page of the MyUni site for the course. For example, notifications of a change in lecture venue, updates on availability of course material etc.will be made on the MyUni site.

    We assume that students access e-mail and that their address is the University of Adelaide student address that was assigned on  enrolment. This is of the form:
    A notice to a student by e-mail is considered to have been received and read by the student unless there is a transmission error and the
    postmaster bounces the message back to us. As discussed above, the Announcements page of the MyUni site for this course will also display relevant notices from time to time, so it is essential that students check their student e-mail and to log on to MyUni regularly.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    This course is one where independent research is undertaken under the guidance of a supervisor, with whom the student meets fortnightly across one semester. Where a student has not previously acquired specific skills that support efficient research (eg search strategies, organising data) they will participate in appropriate workshops or on-line learning, early in their period of enrolment.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    The research dissertation is a 12 unit course, and this is equivalent to a full-time commitment of one semester (generally 40 hours per week over an extended semester of five months) or half-time over two semesters (20 hours per week over ten months).
    Learning Activities Summary

    No information currently available.

    Specific Course Requirements
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment Task Assessment Type Weighting Learning Outcome(s) being addressed
    Plan of professional activities Formative 0 2,4,5
    Professional activities log and reflection Summative 15% 2,4,5
    Oral presentation Summative 15% 1-5
    Journal article / dissertation Summative 70% 1-5
    Assessment Related Requirements
    Assessment Detail

    Plan of proposed activities: Students will prepare a plan of their proposed professional development activities.

    Public health professional development:
    Students are required to engage in 5 hours of public health activities throughout the year demonstrating skills in either leadership, career readiness or competencies related to public health. Activities will be recorded in a log including details about the type of activity, length of time and where the activity was undertaken. In addition to the log, a 600-700 word summary will be written reflecting upon the experience and how it has contributed to their practice as a public health professional.
    Oral presentation: Students will present a 15 minute summary of their research projects including background, hypotheses approach/methodology, results and conclusions.

    Written Dissertation: The results of the research are submitted in the form of a paper suitable for submission to a peer-reviewed journal (between 2,500 and 7,000 words depending on the author guidelines for the chosen journal) or, if negotiated with the course coordinator, a dissertation of between 12,000 and 15,000 words.

    All extensions for assignments must be requested, at the latest, by the last working day before the due date of submission.   Extensions will generally be granted only on medical or genuine compassionate grounds.  Supporting documentation must be  provided at the time a student requests an extension.  Without documentation, extensions will not be granted.  Late requests for extension will neither be accepted nor acknowledged.

    Only the Course Co-ordinator(s) may grant extensions.

    Supporting documentation will be required when requesting an extension. Examples of documents that are acceptable include: a  medical certificate that specifies dates of incapacity, a police report (in the case of lost computers, car & household theft etc.), a  letter from a Student Counsellor, Education and Welfare Officer (EWO) or Disability Liaison Officer that provides an assessment of  compassionate circumstances, or a letter from an independent external counsellor or appropriate professional able to verify the  student’s situation.  The length of any extension granted will take into account the period and severity of any incapacity or impact  on the student.  Extensions of more than 10 days will not be granted except in exceptional circumstances.

    Late submission
    Marks will be deducted when assignments for which no extension has been granted are handed in late.

    All assignments, including those handed in late, will be assessed on their merits.  In the case of late assignments where no  extension has been granted, 5 percentage points of the total marks possible per day will be deducted.  If an assignment that is 2  days late is awarded 65% on its merits, the mark will then be reduced by 10% (5% per day for 2 days) to 55%.  If that same  assignment is 4 days late, the mark will be reduced by 20% (5% per day for 4 days) to 45%, and so on.

    The School of Public Health reserves the right to refuse to accept an assignment that is more than 7 days late.

    Assignments submitted after the due date may not be graded in time to be returned on the listed return dates.

    Students submitting examinable written work who request (and receive) an extension that takes them beyond the examination  period are advised that there is no guarantee that their grades will be processed in time to meet usual University deadlines.
    If a student is dissatisfied with an assessment grade they should follow the Student Grievance Resolution Process  <>.  Students who are not satisfied with a particular assessment result should raise their concerns with Course Co-ordinator(s) in the first instance.  This must be done within 10 business days of the  date of notification of the result.  Resubmission of any assignment is subject to the agreement of the Course Co-ordinator(s) and  will only be permitted for the most compelling of reasons.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.