Honours, Graduate Diploma (Advanced), and Masters by coursework

Information about course requirements, compulsory subjects, supervision, thesis submissions, extensions, plagiarism and contacts.

General information

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Course requirements

The course requirements for all University of Melbourne courses are outlined in the University’s online Handbook. Please refer to the relevant Handbook entry for the requirements of your chosen course:

For information about applications, entry requirements and fees, please visit the Faculty of Arts Honours web page.

Please note: For all enrolment and course policy enquiries relating to programs offered by the Asia Institute you must contact Stop 1 or the University’s Study Connect with us web page.

Compulsory subjects

Thesis subject and presentation

The thesis has a weighting of 50 points within the 100 points of a full honours year, Graduate Diploma or Graduate Diploma (Advanced). Enrolment in the thesis is over two consecutive semesters. The thesis is 15,000 words in length. This word length includes all quotations and epigraphs included in the body of the text; it excludes supplementary text (footnotes or endnotes, bibliography, abstract (synopsis), title page, acknowledgements, or appendices). In week 10 of the semester, students will be required to present an outline of their research topic in a 5-10 minute presentation to members of the Asia Institute. This allows students to gain valuable feedback from academics other than their supervisor and to build networks with staff and other students within the Institute. Students must achieve Honours-level grades (minimum 65%-H2) for each component of assessment in order to qualify for the BA Honours degree.

The Masters by Coursework thesis (TRAN90012 / TRANS90013) has a weighting of 37.5 points and the thesis is 12,000 words in length. Enrolment in the thesis is over two consecutive semesters.

Critical Asian Perspectives

All students completing the Honours, Graduate Diploma (Advanced) program at the Asia Institute must complete the subject Critical Asian Perspectives (ASIA90004). This subject is designed to familiarise students with the interdisciplinary issues involved in Asian Studies, compare approaches to the study of Asian languages and societies in different areas and to help students develop an appreciate of the knowledge systems that are appropriate to their chosen field of study. More information about this subject is available in the online Handbook.


Every student is assigned a supervisor on the basis of their thesis proposal (submitted as a part of the application process) and the available resources. Your supervisor will help you firm up your thesis topic; discuss methods of research, interpretation, and writing; answer any technical questions on presentation; and review drafts.

Supervisor meeting schedule

It is expected you will meet with your supervisor every fortnight during semester, beginning in the first week. Meetings will normally be half an hour in length. You should ensure that after each meeting that you make a time for the next meeting. The onus is on you to meet regularly with your supervisor. Supervisors may not be regularly available during the long winter and summer breaks. The winter break (or the summer break for mid-year entry) is the period when the bulk of the thesis is written. You are expected to effectively utilise these breaks.

Thesis format, submission and extensions

Thesis format

For information about the layout and formatting requirements of an honours or Graduate Diploma thesis, students should refer to the Guidelines for the submission of an Honours, Graduate Diploma or Master by Coursework Thesis (205kb pdf).

Please note: all theses must be typed and secured in a spring-back folder or spiral binding.

Thesis submission

Coursework theses must be submitted by the following dates:

  • Semester 1 – Monday 22 May 2023, 5pm (AEST)
  • Semester 2 – Monday 16 October 2023, 5pm (AEDT)

Your thesis must be submitted through Turnitin, please ensure you include an Honours, Graduate Diploma and Graduate Diploma (Advanced) Thesis Submission Cover Sheet (25kb Word docx)

Thesis examination

All theses completed for the Honours and Graduate Diploma programs are examined by two University of Melbourne examiners, neither of which has supervised your research. These examiners are appointed by the Honours Coordinator, who acts as chair of your Examination Board and is responsible for coordinating the process of examination. Your Examination Board will consist of the chair, your supervisors and your examiners and they will review and finalise your mark before it is released to you.

All coursework theses will be examined in line with the University Assessment and Results Policy (MPF1326) Coursework thesis supervision.


All students retain the right of appeal, as per the Student Complaints and Grievances Policy (MPF1066). However, it should be noted that as your thesis was marked by two examiners and reviewed by your Examination Board before a result was released, appeals on the basis of academic judgment alone are unlikely to result in further review.

Thesis extension

Circumstances beyond your control may sometimes make it impossible to submit work on time. As soon as this is realised, you should seek an extension. Your request for an extension should be supported by your supervisor. Please complete a Thesis extension application form (80kb Word docx), accompanied by any supporting documentation (eg medical certificate), and signed/approved by your supervisor before the submission deadline. Extension forms must be submitted to the Honours Coordinator. If you are granted an extension please be mindful that your graduation date may be altered.

Extensions may be granted for up to 10 days. Extensions beyond 10 days require a Special Consideration application to be lodged with Stop 1 via the Student Portal.

Please note: Students seeking extensions should also note that late submission of the thesis may mean that results are not submitted in time for consideration for federal and university graduate scholarships in November, or graduation in December.

Penalties for late assignments and theses

The Asia Institute will apply late penalties in conformity with the University’s Assessment and Results Policy (MPF1326).


The Asia Institute and the University take instances of plagiarism very seriously. The University defines plagiarism as "the act of representing as one’s own original work the creative works of another, without appropriate acknowledgment of the author or source. (Creative works may include published and unpublished written documents, interpretations, computer software, designs, music, sounds, images, photographs, and ideas or ideological frameworks gained through working with another person or in a group. These works may be in print and/or electronic media.)"

The University Policy is available on the Academic Integrity website.

Allegations of plagiarism and academic misconduct

  • Where it is alleged that a student has been involved in plagiarism, this shall be reported to the Asia Institute’s Director, as per the University policy
  • The student shall be notified of the allegation within 14 days of the offence and will be invited to meet with a panel to discuss the allegation. The student will have 10 days to respond to this notification
  • If the allegation is proven, the panel may award a zero mark for that assessment task or a fail for the subject
  • The matter will also be reported to the Dean of the Faculty of Arts, who must report the outcome to the Academic Registrar of the University
  • Students have the right to appeal decisions made by the panel and may bring a support person to the panel meeting (this person will not be allowed to participate in the meeting). Students may contact the Graduate Student Association for advice, or view the University of Melbourne Student Union (UMSU) Misconduct web page

Asia Institute contacts

The Honours Coordinator for the Asia Institute in semester 1 is Associate Professor Ester Leung, She is located in Room 225 of the Sidney Myer Asia Centre (Building 158).

The Honours Coordinator for the Asia Institute in semester 2 is Dr Nicola Fraschini. He is located in Room 319 of the Sidney Myer Asia Centre (Building 158).

A list of potential supervisors within the Asia Institute is available on the Our people web page of the Asia Institute website. You can also read about current research at the Asia Institute on the Research section of the website.