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Bachelor of Research Studies

Approved Abbreviation: BResSt

Western Sydney University Course Code: 8083.2

AQF Level: 7

Students should follow the course structure for the course version relevant to the year they commenced. This version applies to students whose commencement year for this course is 2H 2017 or later.

Units may be revised or replaced to ensure students are provided with up to date curriculum throughout their studies, and this may result in a new course version. Refer to the Check My Course Progress page in MySR for the most up to date information for your course.

For Commencement Year 2H 2015 - 1H 2017 - please refer to 8083.1 Bachelor of Research Studies

The Master of Research is an internationally recognised qualification which will allow students to be globally mobile in advancing their research education, employment opportunities and pathways to further study. It is designed to increase students’ preparedness for PhD studies and ultimately for research-orientated careers.

The first year is comprised of advanced Bachelor level studies exposing students to comprehensive research methodology and advanced disciplinary coursework. Students will develop a research proposal, improve their academic literacy skills and engage with issues associated with research ethics and integrity. In the second year students will undertake a supervised year of higher degree research and produce a Masters thesis. The second year also includes a series of workshops and seminars designed to enhance students’ research and professional capabilities.

For domestic students, this program attracts Australian Government funding, packaged as a Bachelor of Research Studies/Master of Research to meet regulations.

In Year 1, domestic students are enrolled in the Bachelor of Research Studies as a Commonwealth supported student and are liable for student contribution amounts which can be deferred through the HECS-HELP scheme if they are eligible. In Year 2, domestic students are enrolled in the Master of Research.

Further information about the Master of Research can be found on the Future Students Research Studies pages.

Master of Research

Study Mode
Two years full-time or four years part-time


Admission is determined by the following criteria being met

  • A Bachelor’s degree or a Master’s degree;
  • Achievement of a threshold Admission Average Mark (AAM) equal to or above the minimum of 65;
  • Applicants who do not meet the AAM equal to or above the minimum of 65 will be considered in exceptional circumstances, and applicants whose most recent qualification is 5+ years old shall provide additional evidence of relevant work experience or professional training, or evidence of seniority and standing in an area of endeavor and provide written support from the potential supervisor. Examples of evidence may include; work as a research assistant or laboratory technician, the writing of policy, consultancy involving the writing of reports, production of creative output, and publication of peer reviewed journal articles. Applications will be reviewed and approved by the relevant HDR Director and the Dean of the GRS;
  • A statement that outlines a tentative research area.

Additionally for International students an English proficiency requirement of IELTS 6.5 overall (minimum 6.0 in each band) or equivalent.

Overseas qualifications must be deemed by the Australian Education International - National Office of Overseas Skills Recognition (AEI-NOOSR) to be equivalent to Australian qualifications in order to be considered by UAC and the University.

International Office

Course Structure

Year 1 of this course will also be studied by International students enrolled in 8084 Master of Research (High Cost) and 8085 Master of Research (Low Cost).

After completion of Year 1, domestic students will be transferred to either 8084 Master of Research (High Cost) or 8085 Master of Research (Low Cost), depending on their research discipline area.

Qualification for the award of Master of Research requires the successful completion of 160 credit points. All students will complete 80 credit points of coursework units and 80 credit points of higher degree by research.

All students must enrol in and complete the 30 credit points of prescribed Core units.

Core units

800218Researcher Development 1: Reading, Writing, and the Business of Research
800219Writing Beyond the Academy: Knowledge Translation and Public Audience Communication
800220Researcher Development 2: Proposing and Justifying Research

Equivalent Core Units

The core units listed below count towards completion of this course for students who passed these units in 2019 or earlier.

800166 - Research Design 1: Theories of Enquiry

800167 - Research Literacies

800169 - Research Design 2: Practices of Research

Students must also complete

- 50 credit points of specialisation cluster units. Students will choose 40 credit points of discipline-specific units from within their cluster and are encouraged to choose 10 credit points from an alternate cluster, however this is not mandatory. Students are required to complete 50 credit points of cluster units in total. The three cluster discipline areas are Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS), Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), and Health and Medicine, as shown below.

- 80 credit points of higher degree research.

Students may exit with the Bachelor of Research Studies (exit only) after Year 1 and the successful completion of 80 credit points, with advanced standing of 160 credit points from their previous undergraduate qualification being granted.

Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS) Cluster

Please note: units will be offered subject to demand and availability

Graduate Research School

800228Research Internship and Engagement

School of Humanities and Communication Arts

Research Methods based Units

102426Digital Humanities Research Methods (PG)

Disciplinary Content Units

102582Philosophy of History and Politics
102584The Image of Thought: Art, Film and Philosophy
102601Understanding Race
102602Gender and Genre

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

102661How to Write History
102662New Genres in Research Writing
102412Global Digital Futures
102298The Cutting Edge: Advanced Studies in Humanities and Communication Arts
102339Environmental Humanities
102340Engaging Discursive Fields
102342In the Realms of the Sensory: Ecologies of Word, Sound and Image
102341Debates in Global History
102581Literary Theory
102583History of Ideas
102585What is Islam?

Creative Writing

Disciplinary Content Units

102499Writing Process
102500Writing and Form

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

102497Writing and Ideas
102498Writing Practice and Tradition
102501Writing, Sounds, Images, Texts

Convergent Media

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

101962Researching Convergent Media

Continental Philosophy

Disciplinary Content Units

102384Political Philosophy
102616Philosophy and Literature

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

102380Philosophical Aesthetics
102383Topics in the History of Philosophy
102379Special Topics in Philosophy
102615Theoretical Philosophy
102618Practical Philosophy
102619Philosophy of Nature
102620Philosophy, History and Interpretation

Creative Arts

Disciplinary Content Units

102376Creativity: Theory and Practice

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

102375Research Methods in the Creative Arts
102728Research into Practice: bridging the clinician-researcher divide in applied and creative therapies

Linquistics and TESOL

Research Methods based Units

101854Language and Linguistics Research Methods
102621Formal and Functional Grammar

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

101825English Linguistics for TESOL
102325Advanced Academic English Skills
100919Investigating Second Language Acquisition
102525Bilingualism and Education

Social Sciences and Psychology

Research Methods based Units

102253Digital Social Research in Action

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

102180Translation from Theory and Research to Policy
102176Theories of Difference and Diversity
102194Social Research in the Digital World
102853Cool Green Cities

Urban Studies

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

101633Managing Cities: History and Theory
102069Heritage and Planning
101315Financing Cities in the Global Economy
101634Planning and Environmental Regulation

Development, Security and Sustainability

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

101895Political Economy of Development
101896Development and Security
101636Developing Sustainable Places
102577Humanitarian and Development Agendas and Progress


Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

102198Transnational Crime
102200Global Criminology and Human Rights
102199Violence, Culture and Criminal Justice

Religion and Society

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

102201Contemporary Theories of Religion and Society
102202Religion and Law in Contemporary Public Discourse

Humanitarian and Development Studies

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

101896Development and Security
102576Global Health, Migration and Development
102577Humanitarian and Development Agendas and Progress
102574Public Health in Complex Emergencies (Advanced)
102575Emergency and Disaster Management

Institute for Culture and Society

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

800216Researching Post-Capitalist Possibilities (PhD Summer School)
102295Space, Place and the Field
800196Rethinking Culture and Society

School of Education

Research Methods/Disciplinary Content

102152Social Ecology
102160Education Policy, Practice and Global Knowledge Co-construction
102166Person-Centred Practice
102158Learning and Teaching in Challenging Contexts
102159Designing Curriculum Futures
102165At the cultural interface - learning two ways
101658Transformative Learning
100701Leadership, Mentoring and Professional Growth
102148Engaging Communities
102156Disability in Context
102509Computational Thinking across the STEM Curriculum
102161Leading Change

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

102168Principles and Practices of Evaluation

School of Business

Business students are required to undertake 30 credit points of research methods electives

Research Methods based Units

200897Advanced Analysis and Interpretation
200898Seminal Papers in Business
200896Business Analysis Seminars

Business students may then select up to 20 credit points of cluster elective units

Disciplinary Content Units

200848Governance, Ethics and Social Entrepreneurship
200828Diversity, Labour Markets and Workforce Planning
200845Innovation Through Digital Technology
200719Industrial Relations and Workplace Change
51211International Finance
200852Innovation, Creativity and Foresight
200849New Venture Finance
200894Property Development
200722Strategic Employment Relations
200401Accounting Theory and Applications

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

51054Financial Modelling
51212Security Analysis and Portfolio Theory
200329Supply Chain Management

School of Law

200957Bioethics in Perspective
200907International Environmental Law and Policy
200948International Banking and Finance Law
200949International Climate Change Law
200980Security of Ideas
200953Human Rights in Practice and Theory
200951International Law of Ocean Governance
200961International Human Rights Law
200962International Criminal Law and Justice
200963International Space Law - Commercial Aspects
200964Principles of International Law

Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM) Cluster

Please note: units will be offered subject to demand and availability

School of Computer, Data and Mathematical Sciences

Research Methods/Disciplinary Content - Computing

301363Advanced Cloud Computing
301196Advanced Topics in Artificial Intelligence
300694Advanced Topics in ICT
300252Advanced Topics in Networking
301042Cloud Computing
301175Internet of Things
300599Advanced Robotics
301038Programming Proficiency
301312Applied Machine Learning

Research Methods/Disciplinary Content - Data Science

301044Data Science

Research Methods/Disciplinary Content - Mathematics

301177Mathematical Proof and Reasoning
301106Mathematical Investigations
301176Advanced Mathematical Investigations

Research Methods based Units

301387Research Preparation in Post Graduate Studies

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

301236Advanced Topics in Cybersecurity
301365Probabilistic Graphical Models

School of Engineering, Design and Built Environment

Disciplinary Content Units

301002Specialised Software Applications
301003Sustainable Systems
300197Power System Planning and Economics
301024Advanced Numerical Methods in Engineering
300594Advanced Structural Analysis
300595Advanced Water Engineering
300604Advanced Geotechnical Engineering
300939Sustainability and Risk Engineering (PG)
301008Advanced Composite Structures
301009Advanced Timber Structures
301010Advanced Applied Mechanics
301011Advanced Highway Infrastructure
301012Water Resources Systems Analysis
300515Instrumentation and Measurement (PG)
301013Advanced Statistical Hydrology
301015Deep Foundations
301012Water Resources Systems Analysis
300939Sustainability and Risk Engineering (PG)
301018Mechanical System Design
301017Advanced Waste Management
300599Advanced Robotics
301019Advanced Dynamic Systems
300600Mechatronic System Design
301020Advanced Mobile Robotics
301021Advanced Thermal and Fluid Engineering
301022Advanced Computer Aided Engineering
301023Advanced Computational Fluid Dynamics
301024Advanced Numerical Methods in Engineering
300196Personal Communication Systems
300197Power System Planning and Economics
301025Advanced Power Quality
301026Advanced Smart Grids and Distributed Generation
300515Instrumentation and Measurement (PG)
300601Advanced Electrical Machines and Drives
300596Advanced Signal Processing
300603Advanced Control Systems
301019Advanced Dynamic Systems
300173Advanced Data Networks

School of Science

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

401266Experimental Design and Analysis PG A
401267Experimental Design and Analysis PG B
401203Applications of Magnetic Resonance from Cancer to Neuroanatomy
301247A Cosmic Perspective
301248Space Instrumentation, Technology and Communication
301249Space Science, Planetary Science and Meteorology

The MARCS Institute for Brain, Behaviour and Development

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

800192Neuroscience Methods
800173Cognitive Science: Research and Application
800171Learning and Processing Human Language

Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment

Research Methods based Units

800186Emerging Technologies for Biological Science

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

800170Ecosystems in a Changing World
800195Researching our Changing Environment

Health and Medicine Cluster

Please note: units will be offered subject to demand and availability

School of Nursing and Midwifery

Nursing and Midwifery

Research Methods based Units

401168Evidence Based Health Care
401085Scholarship for Practice Change in Health Care
401086Writing for Publication

Disciplinary Content Units

400220Contemporary Professional Practice in Mental Health Nursing
400238Policy, Power and Politics in Health Care Provision
400777Leadership for Quality and Safety in Health Care
400774Perspectives on Nursing
400210Health Promotion and the Nurse

School of Health Sciences

Research Methods based Units

401077Introduction to Biostatistics

Disciplinary Content Units

401414Advanced Sport and Exercise Science

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

401076Introduction to Epidemiology

School of Medicine

Research Methods based Units

401075Major Incident Management

Disciplinary Content Units

401175Analytic Approaches in Epidemiology
401174Epidemiology of Non-Communicable Diseases
401173Introduction to Clinical Epidemiology
401179Data Management and Programming for Epidemiology

Hybrid - Disciplinary Content and Research Methods

401176Statistical Methods in Epidemiology
401178Controversies in Epidemiology

Translational Health Research Institute (THRI)

Research Methods

800215Applied research with marginalised populations and sensitive health topics

NICM Health Research Institute

800225Clinical Research in Health Science

Specialisation Units

The specialisation units listed below count towards completion of this course for students who passed these units in 2021 or earlier.

401291 - Advanced Sport and Exercise Science

301016 - Advanced Water and Wastewater Treatment

102220 - Applied Methods in Literary Studies and Creative Writing

102222 - Applied Practice in Literary Studies and Creative Writing

401167 - Applied Research in Health Care

101897 - Development for Equality

400975 - Ethics in Health Research

401162 - Experimental Design and Analysis (PG)

800213 - Fieldwork in Complex and Hostile Places

102336 - Functional Grammar

301118 - Genomic Data Science

102698 - Green Urbanscapes: Bio-Physical Functions and Services

800176 - Internship and Community Engagement (PG)

102181 - Nation, Power and Difference

301037 - Scientific Informatics

401164 - Transferable Research Skills

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