• Offered by Research School of Engineering
  • ANU College ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science
  • Offered in First Semester 2016
  • Course subject Engineering
  • Areas of interest Engineering
  • Academic career Undergraduate
  • Course convener
    • Dr David Nisbet

This course is the introductory course for the R&D major which BE (R&D) students have to complete. The course introduces students to some fundamentals of research methodology, and gives students first hand experience by having them carry out a small research project, under close supervision by a member of academic staff.

The course comprises a series of lectures which cover the following topics: How to define a research problem; writing a research paper and report; how to give a seminar; the use of search tools and databases to find relevant literature; scientific methods in practice; design of an experiment.

Students complete an individual research project which requires them to carry out background reading and literature review, and to prepare a research report and give a seminar at the end of the course.

Learning Outcomes

After successfully completing this subject the student should be able to:

  • Demonstrate an improved ability to communicate in relation to an engineering project in oral, written and graphical forms.
  • Understand the different skills required for different forms of written technical communication such as an abstract and a full thesis;
  • Time management
  • Ability to Carry out literature searches and some ability to critically evaluate literature
  • Understanding of process of identifying and formulating research problem; planning and implementing specific research tasks (simulation/experiment) and communicating outcomes
  • Demonstrate an improved ability to use an active approach to learning and to undertake reflective professional practice.
  • Demonstrate an awareness of the existence of technological choices.
  • Make appropriate technological choices based on a consideration of design criteria
  • Design and conduct experiments, devise appropriate measurements, analyse and interpret data and form reliable conclusions
  • Demonstrate an ability to undertake and manage a research project of significant size and scope;
  • Demonstrate awareness of the importance of documenting all aspects of the development of an engineering project of significant magnitude;
  • Have an appreciation of the need to pitch any communication item (e.g., thesis, seminar) appropriately for the audience;
  • Understand the importance of careful communication of technical ideas so that others can effectively use them.
Professional Skills Mapping:
Mapping of Learning Outcomes to Assessment and Professional Competencies 

Indicative Assessment

Two assignments, worth 15% each.  The project assessment is worth 70% and consists of the project report (65%), a seminar (15%) and other assessment items jointly agreed on by the student and supervisor prior to project commencement (20%).

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


A research project with a time commitment of approximately 90 hours, and two assignments with a time commitment of approximately 20 hours each.  The projects take into account the student's background and the stage of their degree.

Students are encouraged to meet with their supervisor on a regular basis (at least once a week).

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must must be studying Bachelor of Engineering (R&D) 4714 or Bachelor of Engineering (R&D)/Science 4715.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Band 2
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500

Course Fees:

Domestic fee paying students

Year Fee
2016 $3480

International fee paying students

Year Fee
2016 $4638


First Semester, 2016

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date
3616 15 Feb 2016 04 Mar 2016 31 Mar 2016 27 May 2016

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