Course Title: Sustainability Research Project

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Sustainability Research Project

Credit Points: 24.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


120H Civil, Environmental & Chemical Engineering


Sem 1 2016,
Sem 2 2016


City Campus


172H School of Engineering


Sem 1 2017,
Sem 2 2017,
Sem 2 2018,
Sem 1 2019,
Sem 2 2019,
Sem 1 2020

Course Coordinator: Edmund Horan

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 3926

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 12.12.18

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

There are no pre-requisite courses, however you are expected to have completed the first year of your program.

Course Description

Sustainability Research Project is intended to represent a significant research project that you as a sustainability professional might be expected to undertake in your practice. During this course you will apply the methodologies developed in a research methods course such as CIVE 1229 Research Methods or equivalent to test your hypothesis and answer the research questions developed. You will be conducting an experimental, numerical, theoretical or action research investigation (or any combination of these) to test your hypothesis and answer research questions. You will compile a report based on the findings and prepare a scholarly paper suitable for publication at a professional conference.

You will either identify the research project from a workplace scenario or similar context you have encountered or you will select a topic that academic supervisors have negotiated with you. Successful completion of this course will enable you to perform certain tasks specific to the specialist industry area examined. More importantly, it will provide you with the opportunity to apply your core sustainability knowledge and relevant skills. 

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

The course contributes to the development of the following Program Learning Outcomes for MC240 Master of Sustainability Practice:

K2 knowledge of research principles and methods applicable to a field of work and or learning

S4 communication and technical research skills to justify and interpret theoretical propositions, methodologies, conclusions and professional decisions to specialist and non-specialist audiences

S5 technical and communication skills to design, evaluate, implement, analyse and theorise about developments that contribute to professional practice or scholarship

A1 with creativity and initiative to new situations in professional practice and/or for further learning

A2 with high level personal autonomy and accountability

A3 to plan and execute a substantial research-based project, capstone experience and/or piece of scholarship

On the successful completion of this course you should be able to:

  1. Produce a concise research brief setting out the research questions to be followed
  2. Develop a program of activities scheduled over a defined time period  indicating the source of reference material to be reviewed, methodology to be followed and case histories to be studied
  3. Undertake a substantial literature review comparing ideas across various disciplines and setting up the directions for your own specific research
  4. Work with a high level of personal autonomy and accountability
  5. Crystallise research into a succinct summary suitable for preparation into a conference paper
  6. Postulate findings to peers supported with evidence

Overview of Learning Activities

Learning will take place primarily through your independent investigation, guided by your supervisor and may include a variety of forms and locations.

Total study hours: 240

Overview of Learning Resources

Research topics will differ for individual students and resources will be provided as needed.

Overview of Assessment

Note that: ☒This course has no hurdle requirements.

The course assessment reflects the aim to encourage research on a topic of sustainability thus assessment is heavily weighted towards the production of a Research Report.

Assessment 1 Project Briefs

Students develop individual project briefs for report submission and progress report mid semester - 15%


Assessment 2 Research Report

The submitted report will be assessed for CLO 1,2,3,4,5 & 6