Credit points: 15

Subject outline

This subject aims to introduce students to scientific research, and involves a project in which the student investigates a scientific problem carried out under the supervision of a member of staff, or, in some cases, an external person with appropriate experience. Students can choose a project from the list of suggested topics or can suggest their own projects, provided they can obtain appropriate supervision approved by the subject co-ordinator. The project involves either acquisition of new data or use of an existing dataset, which must be analysed and interpreted, and written up as a report describing the problem addressed, the scientific basis of the study, the data acquisition, the analysis and interpretation. Each student will also give a short (~10 minute) oral PowerPoint presentation on their research outcomes to the class. This subject addresses La Trobe's Innovation and Entrepreneurship Essential which entails developing the ability to tackle problems creatively, generating new ideas, taking calculated risks and creating change to achieve ambitions now and in the future.

SchoolLife Sciences

Credit points15

Subject Co-ordinatorJohn Webb

Available to Study Abroad/Exchange StudentsYes

Subject year levelYear Level 3 - UG

Available as ElectiveYes

Learning ActivitiesN/A

Capstone subjectYes

Subject particulars

Subject rules



Incompatible subjectsN/A

Equivalent subjectsN/A

Quota Management StrategyN/A

Quota-conditions or rulesN/A

Special conditionsN/A

Minimum credit point requirementN/A

Assumed knowledgeN/A

Career Ready


Work-based learningNo

Self sourced or Uni sourcedN/A

Entire subject or partial subjectN/A

Total hours/days requiredN/A

Location of WBL activity (region)N/A

WBL addtional requirementsN/A

Graduate capabilities & intended learning outcomes

Graduate Capabilities

COMMUNICATION - Communicating and Influencing
INQUIRY AND ANALYSIS - Creativity and Innovation
INQUIRY AND ANALYSIS - Critical Thinking and Problem Solving
INQUIRY AND ANALYSIS - Research and Evidence-Based Inquiry
PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL - Adaptability and Self-Management
PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL - Ethical and Social Responsibility
PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL - Leadership and Teamwork

Intended Learning Outcomes

01. Develop independent learning and research skills by locating, interrogating and evaluating relevant scientific information to generate a scientific report.
02. Solve and creatively find solutions to a complex, unfamiliar, real world scientific and technical problem consistent with the faculty and professional standards.
03. Use numerical calculations and graphical representations to manipulate and interpret numerical data and evidence from experiments, scientific reports and journals.
04. Present coherent explanations supported by evidence in grammatically correct prose in a scientific report that has appropriate referencing, and employs academic integrity and scientific rigour.
05. Conduct a clearly spoken presentation to communicate logically the results of the scientific research carried out (including theoretical concepts).

Subject options

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Start date between: and    Key dates

Melbourne (Bundoora), 2021, Semester 1, Day


Online enrolmentYes

Maximum enrolment sizeN/A

Subject Instance Co-ordinatorJohn Webb

Class requirements

Independent ResearchWeek: 10 - 22
One 60.00 hours independent research per study period on weekdays during the day from week 10 to week 22 and delivered via face-to-face.
60 hours of self-directed learning


Assessment elementCommentsCategoryContributionHurdle% ILO*

One 10-minute oral presentation of the project (750-words equivalent)

N/AOral presentationIndividualNo10 SILO1, SILO2, SILO3, SILO4, SILO5

Project report (3,250-words equivalent)

N/AReportIndividualNo70 SILO1, SILO2, SILO3, SILO4

Literature survey - excluding references (1,000-words)

N/AOtherIndividualNo20 SILO1, SILO2, SILO3, SILO4