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EDR8900 Doctoral Proposal Plan

Semester 2, 2020 Online
Short Description: Doctoral Proposal Plan
Units : 2
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts
School or Department : School of Education
Student contribution band : National Priority - Teaching
ASCED code : 070303 - Education Studies
Grading basis : Pass/Not Pass


Examiner: Dorothy Andrews


Pre-requisite: EDU8602 and EDR9002 and Students must be enrolled in the following Program: DEDU


Doctoral study, culminating in the submission of work for examination by external experts, is a large and complex undertaking. The confirmation of candidature process is intended to ensure that candidates have a clear sense of direction and a workable plan for their doctoral research before embarking upon that phase of their candidature. This course will provide a framework within which candidates can plan their research portfolios and develop their proposals for the confirmation of candidature process.


The course will begin by clarifying the expectations and requirements for the doctoral research portfolio. Students will be facilitated as they review work from previous courses in which they identified workplace challenges and developed focused reviews of relevant literature. They will be guided to select challenges and plan projects appropriate to their doctoral research portfolio. Draft proposals for confirmation of candidature will be workshopped and revised. Students will practise presentations with the class prior to submission of their proposals for confirmation of candidature.


On successful completion of this course students should be able to:

  1. critically examined the characteristics of an appropriate doctoral research portfolio (Proposal);
  2. systematically reviewed their previous work as the basis for planning doctoral research projects (Proposal);
  3. selected appropriate workplace challenges and planned related projects for their doctoral research (Proposal);
  4. developed a comprehensive proposal for confirmation of candidature in the doctoral program (Proposal);
  5. communicated competently with appropriate use of language and literacy (Proposal).


Description Weighting(%)
1. Understanding the requirements of the doctoral research portfolio 10.00
2. Review of workplace challenges and related literature 10.00
3. Selecting and planning projects for the doctoral research portfolio 20.00
4. Drafting and revising a proposal for confirmation of candidature 40.00
5. Preparing and practising for the confirmation of candidature seminar 20.00

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

There are no texts or materials required for this course.

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.
Creswell, JW 2018, Research design: qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods approaches and methods in social research, 5th edn, Sage Publications, Los Angeles.
Delamont, S, Atkinson, P & Parry, O 2000, The doctoral experience: success and failure in graduate school, Falmer Press, London.
Denholm, C & Evans, TD (eds) 2012, Doctorates down under: keys to successful doctoral study in Australia and New Zealand, 2nd edn, Australian Council for Educational Research Press, Camberwell, Victoria.
Kamler, B & Thomson, P 2014, Helping doctoral students write: pedagogies for supervision, 2nd edn, Routledge, London.
Roberts, CM 2018, The dissertation journey: a practical and comprehensive guide to planning, writing and defending your thesis, 3rd edn, Corwin Press, Thousand Oaks, California.

Student workload expectations

Activity Hours
Directed Study 130.00
Independent Study 200.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Notes
PROPOSAL 1 100 21 Oct 2020 (see note 1)

  1. Students must successfully complete the confirmation of candidature process to be eligible for a passing grade in this course. A mark of one (1) indicates that you have passed. A mark of zero (0) indicates that you have not passed. The confirmation of candidature process includes the development and presentation of a full proposal. This will then be evaluated by a panel of experts. Details are outlined on the USQ website.

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    There are no attendance requirements for this course. However, it is the students’ responsibility to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To complete this course satisfactorily, students must have their candidacy confirmed. Failure to achieve the requirements of confirmation will result in a Fail grade for the course.

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    Students should refer to the Assessment Procedure (point 4.2.4)

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    To be awarded a passing grade for this course a student must have their doctoral candidacy confirmed.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    As P is the only passing grade available for this course, all students who are qualified for a passing grade will be given a grade of P. Other students will be given either a Failing grade or an Incomplete grade.

  6. Examination information:
    There is no examination in this course.

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    There is no examination in this course, there will be no deferred or supplementary examinations.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Assessment notes

  1. Referencing in assignments must comply with the APA referencing system. This system should be used by students to format details of the information sources they have cited in their work. The APA style to be used is defined by the USQ library's referencing guide. This guide can be found at

Other requirements

  1. Computer, e-mail and Internet access: Students are required to have access to a personal computer, e-mail capabilities and Internet access to UConnect. Current details of computer requirements can be found at .

  2. Students can expect that questions in assessment items in this course may draw upon knowledge and skills that they can reasonably be expected to have acquired before enrolling in this course. This includes knowledge contained in pre-requisite courses and appropriate communication, information literacy, analytical, critical thinking, problem solving or numeracy skills. Students who do not possess such knowledge and skills should not expect the same grades as those students who do possess them.

Date printed 6 November 2020