USQ Logo
The current and official versions of the course specifications are available on the web at
Please consult the web for updates that may occur during the year.

EDU8602 Advanced Studies in Specialisation

Semester 1, 2020 Online
Short Description: Adv Studies in Specialisation
Units : 2
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts
School or Department : School of Education
Student contribution band : National Priority - Teaching
ASCED code : 070303 - Education Studies
Grading basis : Graded


Examiner: Yvonne Findlay


Pre-requisite: EDU8601


This course will provide an opportunity for doctoral candidates to pursue their research interests in the area that will form the foundation of their EdD proposal and research portfolio. The specialisation chosen by students will enable them to investigate one or two areas of study that will provide an opportunity to establish a comprehensive literature review related to their professional interests and needs.


Students will pursue in depth study within their specialisation area. It will involve an extensive and critical investigation of the literature relevant to the particular focus of the individual's major study area. This will lead to the submission of a critical literature review paper that will provide a foundation for the confirmation proposal and literature review(s) required for the research portfolio.


On successful completion of this course students should be able to:

  1. locate, identify and critique published research-based material relevant to the area of specialisation (Annotated Bibliography);
  2. record and present bibliographic details and reflective summaries of research-based published material in the area of specialisation as an annotated bibliography (Annotated Bibliography);
  3. articulate a research problem appropriate for investigation through a critical review of research-based published material in their area of specialisation (Written accompaniment to the Annotated Bibliography);
  4. prepare a critical review of research literature relevant to the intended area(s) of doctoral research, including at least one proposed research question derived from the review (Paper);
  5. communicate competently with appropriate use of language and literacy, including spelling, grammar, punctuation and bibliographic referencing. (Annotated Bibliography/ Paper).


Description Weighting(%)
1. Locating and accessing relevant research literature 20.00
2. Analysing and critiquing literature to map a field of research 30.00
3. Word processing techniques for academic writing; managing bibliographic records, including the use of bibliography management software 10.00
4. Academic writing and developing a literature review paper 40.00

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. (

There is no prescribed text for this course.

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.
Whether you are on, or off campus, the USQ Library is an excellent source of information

Student workload expectations

Activity Hours
Directed Study 130.00
Independent Study 200.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Notes
ASSIGNMENT 1 40 40 22 Apr 2020
ASSIGNMENT 2 60 60 03 Jun 2020

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    There are no attendance requirements for this course. However, it is the students' responsibility 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 complete an individual assessment item satisfactorily, a student must achieve at least 50% of the marks.

  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 receiving a passing grade a student must achieve at least 50% of the total weighted marks available for the course.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    To be assured of receiving a passing grade a student must achieve at least 50% of the total weighted marks available for the course.

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

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    Not applicable.

  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. 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 at

Other requirements

  1. Students will require access to e-mail and have Internet access to UConnect for this course.

Date printed 19 June 2020