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Applying for honours

Business

To complete honours, you will need to complete coursework and a thesis as full-time study over your honours candidature. As a guide, you can expect to have 10-15 class-hours per week and regular meetings with your thesis supervisor. Success in honours requires a large amount of self-study, particularly in the development and completion of your research thesis. The time you will need to dedicate to your studies will vary, though should not be less than 30 hours per week.

We recommend you consider carefully the implications of attempting outside employment during your honours program, and whether you have the time and flexibility to achieve the best outcome in your coursework and thesis.

Eligibility

To be eligible for honours you need to:

  • achieve a WAM of 65 in your undergraduate degree
  • achieve a WAM of 70 in the senior units of study completed from the discipline of your intended honours subject area
  • complete a major in your intended honours subject area or in a related subject area. We’ll consider applications regarding related subject areas on a case-by-case basis.

You also need to meet additional requirements depending on the type of honours you’re applying for. These are explained below.

For Combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies:

  • you’ll need to have completed, or be on track to complete, all non-honours requirements of your degree by the end of your third year of study. This includes both majors, all core units, all Open Learning Environment (OLE) units and any elective units. You'll also need 48 credit points remaining in your degree.

For Stand-alone Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Honours):

  • you’ll need to have been awarded your undergraduate degree which includes two majors or equivalent depth of study (assessed on a case-by-case basis).

For Bachelor of Commerce (Honours):

  • you’ll need to have been awarded your Bachelor of Commerce or equivalent Business undergraduate degree (e.g. Bachelor of Business).

For Bachelor of Commerce (Liberal Studies) (Honours):

  • you’ll need to have been awarded your Bachelor of Commerce (Liberal Studies).

Entry to honours is competitive. Places are often limited and depend on supervisors being available. This means entry to honours is not guaranteed by meeting the eligibility criteria, and may require a higher WAM.

When to apply

All honours commence in Semester 1, there is no mid-year intake. If you’re offered a place in honours, you can’t defer your offer, you will need to reapply the following year. Your new application will be assessed for the subsequent intake, and it is not guaranteed that you’ll receive an offer.

If you intend to apply during the final semester of your undergraduate degree or combined undergraduate degree, it's recommended you complete all degree requirements during Semester 2. If you complete requirements during summer, you may not be awarded your degree in time for offers.

Applications are assessed in rounds. These are listed below in the table of key dates. We encourage you to apply for the earliest possible round as places may not be available in later rounds. Generally, you’ll be assessed in the round you submitted a valid application. However, we may also consider your application during a later round.

Key dates

The deadlines to apply, and when we'll notify you of the outcome, are explained in the table below.

Round Deadline to apply Applicants notified
First round – all disciplines, except Business Analytics and Work and Organisational Studies 15 November 2021 Early to mid-December 2021
Second round – all disciplines 15 December 2021 Mid-January 2022
Third round – all disciplines 15 January 2022 Early to mid-February 2022

How to apply

As part of your application, you’ll be able to select two preferred honours subject areas. However, you should only nominate a second preference if you genuinely wish to be considered for this subject area.

Before you apply, make sure you read about the honours subject areas that interest you so that you know what documents and information to provide.

How you apply depends on the pathway. This is explained below.

If you're completing a combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degree you can apply for honours through Sydney Student. Go to ‘Course details’ and then 'Apply for Advanced Studies honours’.

You don't need to include your university transcript with your application.

If you have already re-enrolled and selected advanced coursework units, you will need to remove these units before you can apply for honours.

If you're not completing a combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degree, you may be eligible to apply for the stand-alone Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Honours). Information on the Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Honours) and how to apply can be found in Find a course.

The documents you'll need to apply include:

  • proof of identification
  • current official transcript for your undergraduate degree
  • if you received credit for previous study - the official transcript from the institution where you completed the study.

If you are completing a Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Laws, you can choose whether you complete the stand-alone Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Honours):

  • after completing your Bachelor of Commerce. In this case, you'll need to defer Bachelor of Laws for one year
  • after completing your Bachelor of Laws.

If you're not completing a combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degree and are ineligible for the stand-alone Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Honours), you may be eligible to apply for:

  • Bachelor of Commerce (Honours), or
  • Bachelor of Commerce (Liberal Studies) (Honours)

Information on the Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) and Bachelor of Commerce (Liberal Studies) (Honours) and how to apply can be found in Find a course.

The documents you'll need to apply include:

  • proof of identification
  • current official transcript for your undergraduate degree
  • if you received credit for previous study - the official transcript from the institution where you completed the study.

Fees and scholarships

Fees for honours are the same as for other undergraduate programs studied at the Business School. Find out more about tuition fees. Check the Scholarships page for information about scholarships relating to Business School honours.

More information

Honours subject areas

Honours in Accounting provides intensive, small group training in critical skills such as problem identification, data collection, analysis and interpretation of data, and communication.

The honours year comprises three units of study completed during first semester, and a research thesis in second semester. The thesis is a closely supervised research project. Research areas reflect the interests of discipline staff, including corporate disclosure and accounting policies, the value relevance and analysis of accounting numbers, the history of alternative accounting systems, sustainability accounting, management accounting, audit and technology enhanced accounting.

You are not required to discuss your interest, or arrange a supervisor, before you apply. You are not required to include a thesis proposal with your application.

To discuss current research areas in Accounting, contact the Discipline of Accounting Honours Coordinator Associate Professor Geoffrey Frost.

You’ll need to discuss your interest with the Business Analytics Honours Coordinator before you apply. It’s preferable that you arrange your own supervisor before you apply. You are not required to include a thesis proposal with your application.

To discuss current research areas in Business Analytics, contact the Discipline of Business Analytics Honours Coordinator Dr Laurent Pauwels.

Students specialising in Business Information Systems (BIS) honours equip themselves with the skills and knowledge necessary to carry out research in an area of BIS. The specialisation develops the use of a variety of research methods; knowledge of recent developments in the theory and practice of BIS; in conjunction with a supervisor identifying a research topic, research planning, implementation and evaluation; and research writing - culminating in the completion of a dissertation. These skills are highly valued by many employers.

You’ll need to discuss your interest with the BIS Honours Coordinator, and arrange your own supervisor, before you apply. You are not required to include a thesis proposal with your application.

To discuss current research areas in BIS, contact the Discipline of Business Information Systems Honours Coordinator Associate Professor Barney Tan.

Business Law honours objectives include the further development of students' research and writing skills by undertaking intensive training in Semester 1 in the course work component. The course work will provide a good foundation for students to undertake independent research in Semester 2 for their thesis. An important objective is to give students the opportunity to research in depth a topic of interest to them in an area of Business Law.

Staff members of Business Law have research expertise in a number of areas in which they may be interested in supervising. In addition, from time to time, staff members of Business Law may be interested in supervising particular topic areas. Students should not feel constrained by these areas and are invited to submit proposals on other topics for research in which they are interested.

You'll need to arrange an interview with the Business Law Honours Coordinator before you apply. You'll also need to arrange your own supervisor. You are not required to include a thesis proposal with your application, however you will be required to discuss potential projects during your interview.

To discuss current research areas in Business Law, contact the Discipline of Business Law Honours Coordinator Dr Eva Huang.

Honours specialising in Finance at the University of Sydney Business School is a prestigious and highly sought-after qualification. Since their introduction in 1996, the Discipline of Finance has graduated over 200 honours degrees. This elite group of alumni have gone on to excellent graduate positions with leading Investment Banks, Investment Management, Private Equity firms and other financial services organisations. A number of these students have also undertaken PhDs in finance.

During the honours year, students work on a research thesis which allows them to develop expertise in a specific area of finance. It also provides students with considerable research experience and allows them to develop their writing skills and learn how to structure complex ideas. Much of the honours year involves independent learning which requires students to be highly self-motivated. Students must also develop time management skills and self-discipline. These qualities are highly sought after in the job market and are critical for successful careers after the honours year.

The honours program is highly competitive and you should only apply if you’ve achieved a WAM of 75 or higher in your undergraduate studies. If you’re assessed as potentially suitable, we’ll provide you with a list of potential supervisors and invite you to contact Discipline of Finance staff members.

We encourage you to apply by the first-round deadline. Students will have the opportunity to apply for the second and the final rounds, and offers will be made if places are available.

You will need to submit a thesis proposal as part of your application. This should be one to two A4 pages in length.

You are not required to discuss your interest, or arrange a supervisor, before you apply.

To discuss current research areas in Finance, contact the Discipline of Finance Honours Coordinator Dr Reuben Segara.

Honours study in International Business has a dual purpose. On the one hand, it is directed towards the development of the analytical and conceptual skills required to conduct independent research in the field. Those pursuing Honours from this angle may be interested in postgraduate study and an academic career, or in working as a research analyst in either the private or the public sector. On the other hand, honours in International Business also builds on and further develops the practical management skills acquired in the major program. From this perspective, the final honours year adds value to an undergraduate degree and can lead to a range of opportunities in private firms, NGOs, international agencies, and government departments.

You’ll need to discuss your interest with the International Business Honours Coordinator before you apply. You are not required to include a thesis proposal with your application, or to arrange your own supervisor before you apply. 

To discuss current research areas in International Business, contact the Discipline of International Business Honours Coordinator Dr Huan Zhang.

Honours specialising in Marketing provides a high level of specialist training in the analytical and research skills required to solve problems in marketing practice and/or to prepare students for further studies in marketing (e.g. PhD). Past honours students from the Marketing discipline have gone on to a wide range of careers within marketing and wider business roles in world class companies including Microsoft, Proctor and Gamble, AC Nielsen and Clemenger.

The honours year allows students to develop a wide range of additional skills that are highly prized by employers in industry and government. Honours graduates are recognised as possessing levels of knowledge and skill well beyond those obtained by pass degree graduates.

You’ll need to discuss your interest with the Marketing Honours Coordinator before you apply. You are not required to include a thesis proposal with your application, or to arrange your own supervisor before you apply.

To discuss current research areas in Marketing, contact the Discipline of Marketing Honours Coordinator Dr Kiju Jung.

Students completing honours specialising in Work and Organisation Studies (WOS) are SURE: Smart, Unique, Ready and Employable.

The Honours year with WOS puts you in a smart cohort of like-minded, clever, sharp students with a passion for creativity, critical thinking, and research. During the honours year, you’ll work with an academic from WOS on a bespoke research topic that speaks to current challenges and problems in the workplace and across industry. Honours is a unique opportunity to turn your pass degree into something very special. Completing honours will give you the academic skills necessary to be ready for postgraduate study. Finally, honours with WOS boosts employability. Why? Because you develop your ability to connect with business and workplace problems and challenges. Honours graduates from WOS go on to leading roles in business, consulting firms and government.

You’ll need to discuss your interest with the WOS Honours Coordinator before you apply. You can choose to include a thesis proposal with your application to highlight your research interests, however this is not essential. You are not required to arrange your own supervisor before you apply.

To discuss current research areas in WOS, contact the Discipline of Work and Organisational Studies Honours Coordinator Dr Karyn Wang.

Students from other faculties/schools

Provided you meet the eligibility criteria, you may apply for honours if your undergraduate degree is from another faculty or school. After we assess your application, we'll forward it to your home faculty or school for joint approval.

Students in a non-business undergraduate degree may apply for:

  • Stand-alone Bachelor of Advanced Studies
  • appended honours for your degree where available and if permitted by your home faculty or school e.g. Bachelor of Arts (Honours), Bachelor of Economics (Honours).

Students in a non-business undergraduate degree combined with Bachelor of Advanced Studies may apply for:

  • Combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies, provided you've met the requirements of your non-business undergraduate degree.

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Last updated: 25 October 2021

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