• Offered by Biology Teaching and Learning Centre
  • ANU College ANU Joint Colleges of Science
  • Course subject Biology
  • Academic career UGRD
  • Course convener
    • AsPr Josette Masle
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Offered in Summer Session 2020
    First Semester 2020
    Autumn Session 2020
    Winter Session 2020
    Second Semester 2020
    Spring Session 2020
    See Future Offerings

This course includes an on campus activity/ies. Check timetable for details. Contact course convener if you are unable to travel to Canberra.

This course is specially tailored for students attracted to, or wondering about research. Students are immersed in a real research environment and in the practice of research. They are integrated in a research team and get direct experience in core components of research activities, from posing a question, defining hypotheses to address it, and the appropriate approaches to examine these hypotheses; data analysis and rigorous presentation, interpretation of results, and most importantly their critical assessment and discussion in the context of the current body of knowledge. Students are experiencing first-hand the joys and tribulations of probing the unknown, the drive, curiosity, discipline, and perseverance this requires.

This course is designed to be flexible and allows for a broad range of research areas and environments to be experienced by students. Interested students are encouraged to contact the convener and prospective supervisors in Biology. Many research areas are available, for example: http://www.biology.anu.edu.au/ , http://cos.anu.edu.au/Plants , http://genetics.anu.edu.au/ , http://jcsmr.anu.edu.au

Note: This is an Honours Pathway Course that involves research oriented material of a greater conceptual difficulty than a typical 3000 level science course. Entry to this course requires at least 96 units towards a degree with an average of 70% or above in second and third year science courses and approved by the convener.

A Botanical Internship (summer) is available in the Australian National Herbarium and Centre for Plant Biodiversity Research in Canberra, Australia. It is aimed at those intending to undertake a technical or professional career in botany or a closely related discipline (including ecology, resource management and botanical horticulture). Students are admitted by written application and a selection process that occurs in November. The program is aimed at students who have just completed their second or third year of study, but applications from students at other levels will be considered. Contact rsb.studentadmin@anu.edu.au for application form.

A Genetic Counselling Internship is available with the Genetic Counselling Unit of The Canberra Hospital. It is aimed at those with a special interest in the field of human genetics, specifically in the area of genetic counselling. Students who wish to be considered for this internship should have completed BIOL3204 Human Genetics, or other relevant human genetics courses and satisfy the eligibility criterion of at least a 70% average across science courses during previous semesters. Contact David.Rowell@anu.edu.au for more information.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

Specific learning outcomes will depend on the nature of the research project.  In general, on satisfactory completion of the course students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Plan and engage in an independent and sustained critical investigation and evaluation of a chosen research topic supervised by an academic
  2. Systematically identify relevant theory and concepts, apply them appropriately, and draw appropriate conclusions
  3. Engage in critical review of appropriate and relevant information sources
  4. Understand and apply relevant research techniques and methods
  5. Record original data and apply statistical or other evaluation processes to original data when appropriate
  6. Communicate concepts and results clearly and effectively both in writing and orally

The course develops autonomy, critical thinking, rigour, and time management skills.

Other Information


Enrolment in this course is dependent upon the availability of a suitable supervisor and must be approved by the course convener.

Completion of at least 96 units towards a degree with an average of 70% or above in science second and third year courses.

For permission to enrol in this course, please email rsb.studentadmin@anu.edu.au.

Indicative Assessment

Assessment will be based on:

  • Written report, in a scientific paper format (70%; LO 1-6)
  • Seminar (15%; LO 1-6)
  • Notebook/Lab book (10%; LO 1-6)
  • Blog entry (5%; LO 1-6)
Assessment of the research project will involve independent examiners. It may involve expert input from staff of another institution. This provides the opportunity for cross-institutional benchmarking and exposes the student to expertise from a wider range of researchers.

In response to COVID-19: Please note that Semester 2 Class Summary information (available under the classes tab) is as up to date as possible. Changes to Class Summaries not captured by this publication will be available to enrolled students via Wattle. 

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.


Project is expected to involve 65 hours of laboratory or fieldwork plus 150 hours of individual work, including preparation of a report (up to 9000 word)s

Requisite and Incompatibility

You will need to contact the Biology Teaching and Learning Centre to request a permission code to enrol in this course.




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:
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
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2020 $4050
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2020 $5760
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Summer Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
1333 01 Jan 2020 24 Jan 2020 24 Jan 2020 31 Mar 2020 In Person View

First Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
3678 24 Feb 2020 02 Mar 2020 08 May 2020 05 Jun 2020 In Person View

Autumn Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
5315 01 Apr 2020 24 Apr 2020 24 Apr 2020 30 Jun 2020 In Person View

Winter Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
6339 01 Jul 2020 24 Jul 2020 24 Jul 2020 30 Sep 2020 In Person View

Second Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
8684 27 Jul 2020 03 Aug 2020 31 Aug 2020 30 Oct 2020 In Person View

Spring Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
9285 01 Oct 2020 23 Oct 2020 23 Oct 2020 31 Dec 2020 In Person View

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