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PSY4002 Psychology Honours Project 2

Semester 1, 2014 On-campus Springfield
Units : 1.5
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences
School or Department : School of Psychology, Counselling and Community

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Examiner: Michael Ireland
Moderator: Carla Jeffries


Pre-requisite: PSY4001 and Students must be enrolled in one of the following Programs: BSCH in Psychology major (12302) or BPSH. BPSH students, completion of the first 3 years with a GPA of 5.0 across levels 1 to 3 psychology courses.


Your undergraduate training in psychology has stressed the scientist-practitioner model and has placed a heavy emphasis upon evidence-based practice. One way to think about this is that your training emphasises both the ability to be a good consumer of research and to be a good producer of research. The consumer aspect involves the ability to collect evidence about a particular topic, synthesise it, organise it, and communicate it in a way that makes the current evidence readily understandable. The producer aspect involves the ability to be able to conduct a substantial empirical scientific study concerning the application of psychological knowledge and techniques and then write a report of sufficient academic rigour to be publishable.


This is the second of two courses that contribute towards the Psychology Honours Project. This course centres on the second component of the Honours Project: submission of a journal article. The journal article is based upon a study which requires advanced knowledge of research methodology and appropriate techniques for analysing data. In this second course, students will continue working on the research project that was approved in Psychology Honours Project 1 and submit their final dissertation consisting of the initial literature review and the journal article.


On completion of this course students will be able to:

  1. demonstrate analytical and critical thinking about the chosen research topic and related issues within the discipline of psychology;
  2. demonstrate competence in each component of scientific research procedures; namely, identifying research problems, formulating hypotheses, defining variables, collecting data, analysing data using appropriate quantitative or qualitative techniques, interpreting data, and drawing conclusions;
  3. competently present a journal article that follows the guidelines of the American Psychological Association.


Description Weighting(%)
1. To be determined by the student in consultation with his/her supervisor. 100.00

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

  • American Psychological Association 2010, Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 6th edn, American Psychological Association, Washington, DC.

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.
  • Adelheid, AMN & Pexman, PM 2010, Displaying your findings: A practice guide for creating figures, posters, and presentations, 6th edn, American Psychological Society, Washington DC.
  • Adelheid, AMN & Pexman, PM 2010, Presenting your findings: A practice guide for creating tables, 6th edn, American Psychological Society, Washington DC.
  • Cone, JD & Foster, SL 2006, Dissertations and theses from start to finish: Psychology and related fields, 2nd edn, American Psychological Society, Washington DC.
  • Meltzoff, J 1998, Critical thinking about research: Psychology and related fields, American Psychological Society, Washington DC.
  • Miller, AB 2009, Finish your dissertation once and for all! How to overcome psychological barriers, get results, and move on with your life, American Psychological Society, Washington DC.
  • Reference materials will depend on the particular topic under investigation. While different types of materials may be consulted, depending on the nature of the topic, it is envisaged that psychology journal articles will make up the bulk of the reference materials.
  • The references listed above are guides that may assist students in the selection of topics and writing up of their thesis project.

Student workload requirements

Activity Hours
Lectures 39.00
Private Study 190.00
Supervisor Consultation 26.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Notes
Journal Article 100 75 04 Mar 2014 (see note 1)
Systematic Literature Review 100 25 04 Mar 2014 (see note 2)

  1. Submission dates for Assessment items will be advised in Week 1 of Semester.
  2. Submission dates for Assessment items will be advised in Week 1 of Semester.

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    It is the students' responsibility to attend and participate appropriately in all activities (such as lectures and consultation with supervisor) scheduled for them, and to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To satisfactorily complete an individual assessment item a student must achieve at least 50% of the marks for that item.

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    Students should refer to the Assessment Procedure (point 4.2.4)

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    To be assured of a Passing grade, a student must receive at least 50% of the total weighted marks for the assessment items. Students who do not qualify for a Passing grade may, at the discretion of the Examiner, be awarded additional work to demonstrate to the Examiner that they have achieved the required standard. It is expected that such students will have gained at least 45% of the total marks available for the assessment items.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    The final grade will be assigned on the basis of the mark obtained for the assessment items.

  6. Examination information:
    There is no examination in this course.

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    As there were no examinations in this course there will be no Deferred or Supplementary examinations.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Assessment notes

  1. Detailed instructions regarding the assessment items will be handed out in classes. Students must familiarise themselves with these instructions.

  2. The due date for an assignment is the date by which a student must despatch the assignment to the USQ. The onus is on the student to provide proof of the despatch date, if requested by the Examiner.

  3. Students must retain a copy of each item submitted for assessment. This must be produced within five days if required by the Examiner.

  4. Extensions for each assessment item will only be granted in exceptional circumstances. Applications for extensions must be endorsed by the supervisor, and submitted in writing to the examiner. See the current Thesis Guidelines for more information. If extenuating circumstances are likely to severely disrupt the student's progress, the student and supervisor should inform the examiner as soon as possible so that suitable options can be discussed.

  5. Students who, for medical, family/personal, or employment-related reasons, are unable to complete an assignment at the scheduled time may apply to defer an assessment in a course. Such a request must be accompanied by appropriate supporting documentation. The following temporary grade may be awarded IDM (Incomplete Deferred Make-up).

  6. Students are strongly advised to maintain regular contact with their supervisor. Students should carefully read the information pertaining to the supervisor-student relationship contained in the course handouts.

  7. Students are not allowed to begin data collection until the Ethics Application for their project has been approved in writing.

  8. APA style is the referencing system required in this course. Students should use APA style in their assignments to format details of the information sources they have cited in their work. The APA style to be used is defined by the USQ Library's referencing guide. //

Other requirements

  1. Students are strongly advised to maintain regular contact with their supervisor. Students should carefully read the information pertaining to the supervisor-student relationship contained in the current thesis handbook. Students need email and internet access to complete their project.