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Unit of study_

EDPZ6730: Special Project 1

Semester 1, 2023 [Supervision] - Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney

Special Project is a capstone unit, semester length independent investigation of a personally chosen topic in an educational context, the result of which is a 'product' of approximately 6,000 words such as a written report, review, account of the development of a resource, analysis of action research or critique of research. All 'products' should be demonstrably informed by relevant theory and research. The satisfactory completion of this unit provides an alternative to the regular face-to-face classroom unit of study for candidates enrolled in a graduate coursework award.

Unit details and rules

Unit code EDPZ6730
Academic unit Education
Credit points 6
24 credit points of units
Assumed knowledge


Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff

Coordinator Jen Scott Curwood,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Assignment Special Project
Special Project
100% Formal exam period
Due date: 09 Jun 2023 at 23:59
6000 words
Outcomes assessed: LO1

Assessment summary

The Nature of a Special Project

Special Projects may be presented in many forms and structures; however, common to all should be a high quality of writing, characterised by clarity, coherence, and logical argument. Candidates are encouraged to consider forms of Projects such as reviews, reports, and critiques of research, accounts of the development of resources, protocols, instruments or accounts and analyses of action, and research in educational contexts. As with all essays, such work should be demonstrably informed by relevant theory and research. Furthermore, Special Projects may include forms other than written prose; use may be made of graphs, tables, pictorial representations, audio, video, and computer-generated material in order to support written reports.

A Special Project should not take the form of an official empirical study similar to a dissertation or thesis, which requires human ethics approval. Students need to discuss their project with their supervisor in terms of viability of their ideas.


Each student needs to submit a proposal for the Special Project. The proposal, normally one page in length, is to be seen as a flexible plan of action for the candidate. It should indicate the major purposes and directions of the proposed Special Project. However, it should also provide flexibility to accommodate changes in emphasis that may occur as the Project develops. Candidates should ensure that their proposal addresses the following:

  1. Title of the proposed Special Project
  2. Candidate’s name
  3. Name of proposed supervisor (where applicable)
  4. The nature and purposes of the proposed Project
  5. An indication of the relationship between the proposed Project and the problems, concepts and issues raised in previously completed coursework
  6. Two references indicating the student's familiarity with the related literature at this stage

Assignment of Special Project Supervisor

After consultation, the Designated Course Coordinator will formally assign a supervisor for your Special Project, who is normally the academic staff member who has worked with you until this point.

Due Date and Assessment

Special Projects are due for submission midnight on Friday 9 June 2023.

Submit your Special Project through Turnitin.

Generally, a Special Project will be assessed by a candidate’s supervisor. In some circumstances, the Special Project Coordinator may request another staff member. 

Assessment criteria

The specific criteria for assessment may vary depending on the nature of the project. The Marking Criteria and the Grade Descriptors below are provided as guidelines, but specific criteria should be discussed with the supervisor before submission of the report for marking.


Marking Criteria


  1. Clear introduction to the field 
  2. Adequacy of the literature review
  3. Analysis of key themes
  4. Discussion of policy/practice implications
  5. Presentation


Grade Descriptors







Indicates work of exceptional quality with respect to all specified objectives. 


  • High level of critical analysis and/or interpretation

May also demonstrate:

  • Evidence of wide, systematic, and creative information retrieval 
  • Potential to produce original ideas, based on specialized knowledge, which challenge and extend terms of debate



Indicates work of superior quality with respect to all specified objectives.


  • Ability to adapt and apply ideas to new situations, and to evaluate them
  • Academic writing of a high standard (style, argumentation, referencing – as appropriate)

May also demonstrate:

  • Understanding of a broad area of knowledge as an integrated whole, and the ability to recognise significance of an argument to a theoretical debate or abstract context
  • Ability to articulate integrated analyses of ideas and theories
  • Evidence of wide reading



Indicates work of predominantly good quality with respect to all specified objectives.


  • A sound understanding of fundamental concepts, theories and/or issues
  • Ability to apply fundamental concepts going beyond simple replication of content knowledge
  • Satisfactory analysis and argumentation, rather than a predominantly descriptive approach
  • Ability to use academic language competently

May also demonstrate:

  • Interpretive and/or research skills which are used autonomously



Indicates a satisfactory achievement of specified objectives. 


  • A basic grasp of factual content, theories and/or issues
  • Basic knowledge of fundamental concepts, and/or performance

of basic skills

  • Ability to use academic language adequately



Indicates an unsatisfactory achievement of specified objectives.  Demonstrates little or no evidence of satisfactory understanding of the relevant content; and may contain either serious errors or major gaps in what is considered essential information.

For more information see guide to grades.

Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

  • Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
  • After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

This unit has an exception to the standard University policy or supplementary information has been provided by the unit coordinator. This information is displayed below:

Standard FASS late penalties apply

Academic integrity

The Current Student website  provides information on academic integrity and the resources available to all students. The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic integrity breaches seriously.  

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breach. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breaches, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

You may only use artificial intelligence and writing assistance tools in assessment tasks if you are permitted to by your unit coordinator, and if you do use them, you must also acknowledge this in your work, either in a footnote or an acknowledgement section.

Studiosity is permitted for postgraduate units unless otherwise indicated by the unit coordinator. The use of this service must be acknowledged in your submission.

Simple extensions

If you encounter a problem submitting your work on time, you may be able to apply for an extension of five calendar days through a simple extension.  The application process will be different depending on the type of assessment and extensions cannot be granted for some assessment types like exams.

Special consideration

If exceptional circumstances mean you can’t complete an assessment, you need consideration for a longer period of time, or if you have essential commitments which impact your performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Special consideration applications will not be affected by a simple extension application.

Using AI responsibly

Co-created with students, AI in Education includes lots of helpful examples of how students use generative AI tools to support their learning. It explains how generative AI works, the different tools available and how to use them responsibly and productively.

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
- supervision Project (3 hr) LO1

Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University's graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. see Canvas site

Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise

Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline.

GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving

Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem.

GQ3 Oral and written communication

Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context.

GQ4 Information and digital literacy

Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies.

GQ5 Inventiveness

Generating novel ideas and solutions.

GQ6 Cultural competence

Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues.

GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness

Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries.

GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity

An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context.

GQ9 Influence

Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities

This section outlines changes made to this unit following staff and student reviews.

No changes have been made since this unit was last offered.


The University reserves the right to amend units of study or no longer offer certain units, including where there are low enrolment numbers.

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