PUB HLTH 7211A - Dissertation Part 1

North Terrace Campus - Semester 2 - 2021

This course aims to develop in students the capacity to work independently under the guidance of a supervisor, to carry out research, and to effectively communicate the need for, process of, and results of the research. Each student will develop a research proposal and a literature review, present a seminar regarding their research, leading towards the preparation of an individual research dissertation that exhibits original investigation, analysis and interpretation to be submitted in PUB HLTH 7211B. The thesis will take the form of a paper suitable for submission to an appropriate peer-reviewed journal, with additional supporting material.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code PUB HLTH 7211A
    Course Dissertation Part 1
    Coordinating Unit Public Health
    Term Semester 2
    Level Postgraduate Coursework
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Contact Up to 1 hour per fortnight supervision across two Semesters, plus skills development seminars or online learning of up to 5 hours as required
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange
    Prerequisites PUB HLTH 5006 (Credit minimum), PUB HLTH 5007, PUB HLTH 6018, PUB HLTH 6021 (Credit Minimum), PUB HLTH 7300/OL (Credit Minimum)
    Incompatible PUB HLTH 7119, PUB HLTH 7122A, PUB HLTH 7122B, PUB HLTH 7133A, PUB HLTH 7133B, PUB HLTH 7134A, PUB HLTH 7134B, PUB HLTH 7011, PUB HLTH 7211B
    Restrictions Available to M. Counselling & Psychotherapy students only
    Course Description This course aims to develop in students the capacity to work independently under the guidance of a supervisor, to carry out research, and to effectively communicate the need for, process of, and results of the research. Each student will develop a research proposal and a literature review, present a seminar regarding their research, leading towards the preparation of an individual research dissertation that exhibits original investigation, analysis and interpretation to be submitted in PUB HLTH 7211B. The thesis will take the form of a paper suitable for submission to an appropriate peer-reviewed journal, with additional supporting material.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Associate Professor Jaklin Eliott

    Phone: +61 8313 3855
    Location: Level 9, Adelaide Health & Medical Sciences Building

    Student & Program Support Services Hub
    Phone: +61 8313 027

    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 design and execution of a research project.

    2.  Demonstrate the skills required to conduct independent research, including
    a) the ability to conduct effective literature searches, critically appraise the literature, and compile information.
    b) select and use an appropriate qualitative and/or quantitative research methodology to investigate a research problem or issue relevant to Counselling and Public Health.

    3.  Identify and communicate the ethical dimensions of research and demonstrate the skills and attitudes of an ethical researcher.

    4. Develop an understanding of counselling research competencies by undertaking professional development activities and reflecting upon the experiences

    5. Use appropriate communication style and terminology to present research findings effectively in oral and written form.
    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)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    1 - 5
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    1 - 5
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    1 - 3, 5
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    1 - 5
    Intercultural and ethical competency
    • adept at operating in other cultures
    • comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
    • able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
    • demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
    1 - 5
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
    1 - 5
  • 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.

    Where a student has not sufficiently acquired specific skills that support efficient research (e.g. 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.

    Dissertation Parts 1 and 2 are both 6 unit courses, each equivalent to a half-time enrolment of one semester (i.e., generally 20 hours per week over an extended semester of five months).

    Learning Activities Summary
    1. On-line resources or workshops to assist in the development of preliminary skills (eg Endnote, Word for long documents) will be made available to students to support their research.
    2. Ethics Application: If applicable, to be lodged as soon as practical, prefereably prior to enrolment (this may have been done as part of PUB HLTH 7300OL).
    3. Independent Research: Undertaken under the guidance of a supervisor
    4. Plan of professional activities: Students will prepare a plan of their proposed professional development activities. 
    5. Professional activities: Students are required to engage in 5 hours of counselling professional development activities throughout the year demonstrating skills in either leadership, career readiness or competencies related to counselling.
    6. Seminar Presentation: In the month before submission for a full-time enrolment, a seminar is presented regarding the research undertaken
    7. 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.
    Specific Course Requirements
    Students who undertake a research project involving children or people who are ill, elderly, or vulnerable, are now required to demonstrate clearance by producing a criminal history check, obtained through a Department for Communities and Social Inclusion (DCSI check). International students may be required to obtain a certificate from their home country.
    Small Group Discovery Experience
  • 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 Task Type Due Weighting Learning Outcome
    Plan of professional activities 1 Formative


    0% 4
    Professional activities log/reflection 1 Summative TBA 15% 4
    Oral presentation 2 Summative TBA 15% 1 - 5
    Journal article/dissertation 2 Summative TBA 705 1 - 5
    1. To be submitted as part of PUB HLTH 7211A
    2. To be submitted as part of PUB HLTH 7211B
    Assessment Related Requirements
    Assessment Detail
    Plan of professional activities: Students will write a brief plan of the activities they will undertake for 5 hours of professional activities related to counselling, counselling research, and career development.

    Professional activities log/reflection: Students will engage in 5 hours of counselling activities demonstrating skills in leadership, career readiness or competencies related to counselling and public health. They will keep a log of these activities (with evidence), and write, a 500-600 word reflection of these experiences, and how they have contributed, or will contribute to their practice as a health professional.

    Oral presentation: Students will present a 15 minute summary of their research project including background, hypotheses/research questions, approach/methodology, results, and conclusions.

    Journal article/dissertation: The outcome of the student research activity may be submitted either as a (i) manuscript suitable for submission to an appropriate peer-reviewed journal (some supporting material may be requested to best demonstrate the acquisition of research skills), or (ii) dissertation of 12,000 – 15,000 words (as negotiated with the course coordinator).
    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 Coordinator(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 0% (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 Coordinator(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 Coordinator(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:

    NOG (No Grade Associated)
    Grade Description
    CN Continuing

    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.