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Unit of study_

PUBH5601: Public Health Special Project

Semester 1, 2021 [Supervision] - Remote

This unit is intended for students nearing the end of their MPH/GradDipPH. The Special Project is a self-directed unit focussed on a specific MPH-related topic of interest to the student. The project is supervised by an academic within the School. An external person can act as the main supervisor but a School academic would also be required. This project may be developed by the student, or the student could develop a project in consultation with an intended supervisor. The student needs to meet with the supervisor during the semester. Preferably this would be at least three times but the frequency will depend on the project and the preference of the supervisor. As the project is self-directed, there is not an expectation that the supervisor would have close involvement, although they can have if they want to. The student would be expected to undertake approximately 120 to 150 hours of work for this unit. The format of the final report or other output can be whatever is appropriate, as agreed with the supervisor(s).

Unit details and rules

Unit code PUBH5601
Academic unit Public Health
Credit points 6
Assumed knowledge

The student is assumed to have the knowledge and skills required to suitably complete the requirements of the project they undertake, or be reasonably able to obtain this knowledge and these skills during the course of the project.

Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff

Coordinator Tim Driscoll,
Lecturer(s) Anita Van Zwieten,
Alexandra Barratt,
Tim Driscoll,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Assignment Assessment 1
Written assessment
10% Week 03 1000 words
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Assignment hurdle task Assessment 2
Written report or other appropriate deliverable, depending on the project
90% Week 13 4000 words
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
hurdle task = hurdle task ?

Assessment summary

The required deliverable is a formal report of about 2,000 words or an equivalent deliverable, depending on the project.  Detailed information for each assessment can be found on Canvas.

Assessment criteria

The University awards common result grades, set out in the Coursework Policy 2014 (Schedule 1).

As a general guide, a high distinction indicates work of an exceptional standard, a distinction a very high standard, a credit a good standard, and a pass an acceptable standard.

Result name

Mark range


High distinction

85 - 100

work of an exceptional standard


75 - 84

work of a very high standard


65 - 74

work of a good standard


50 - 64

work of an acceptable standard


0 - 49

When you don’t meet the learning outcomes of the unit to a satisfactory standard.

For more information see

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.

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
Ongoing Project Project (150 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4

Attendance and class requirements

Class requirements: Self-directed study with compulsory online or face-to-face supervision from an academic within the School of Public Health.

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. undertake a discrete project in public health
  • LO2. work independently and engage in self-directed learning
  • LO3. apply public health knowledge and skills to a project
  • LO4. communicate effectively with a project supervisor.

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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