The MPhil is an internationally recognised masters (by research) degree. It is designed for students to develop advanced skills in carrying out independent and sustained research. The thesis should demonstrate a critical application of specialist knowledge and make an independent contribution to existing scholarship in the area of research.
The normal length of an MPhil thesis is 30,000-40,000 words, exclusive of words in tables, maps bibliographies and appendices. Footnotes are included as part of the word limit.
MPhil applicants will be assessed using the criteria described below. The measures include an assessment of a candidate´s knowledge of the discipline and evidence of their ability to complete a rigorous research project. Applicants are required to meet the minimum standards described for each of the 6 measures.
In exceptional circumstances, the RHD Committee may consider for admission a person who does not have qualifications equivalent to a four-year honours degree, if it is satisfied that the person´s experience in research and the results of that experience are so outstanding that the person is likely to have the ability to pursue the course successfully. In such cases, or where other minimum standards as specified below are not all met, the department may present an evidence-based case for admittance to the Chair Research Higher Degrees Committee.
Normally, the evidence of research equivalence would take the form of a research publication record and/or additional significant research experience that would be equivalent to a fourth year. In the case of a three-year honours degree from the United Kingdom the sponsoring Department may also provide evidence about the quality of the institution and the quality of the degree, compared with a four-year honours degree.
All candidates for the MPhil will be examined on the basis of their thesis. A candidate will have appropriately experienced supervisor/s and an Advisory Committee who in consultation with the candidate, arranges a course of supervised research designed to suit the individual requirements and interests of the candidate. A candidate may be required to supplement their research program by attendance at, or enrolment in, additional subjects if considered necessary by the supervisor(s). Candidates are required to make a public presentation of their research findings at the University in the three months prior to submitting their thesis for examination.
On completion of the course students should be able to:
demonstrate advanced learning in research skills and mastery of appropriate techniques, such as the use of archival or primary evidence, analysis of data, judgment of conflicting evidence etc;
demonstrate specialist knowledge in the area of their research;
present the results of their research in publishable quality or work towards incorporating their findings in further research;
gain access to certain types of employment through this specialist qualification;
demonstrate an understanding of, and commitment to, research ethics or code of practice.
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