Supervised Research Paper

A research paper may be taken as part of a Bachelor of Laws (Honours). The course is worth 12 units and involves the completion of an 11,000-13,000 word research thesis.

Further information can be located within the Research Paper Guidelines


Ensure you meet minimum program requirements

LLB (Hons) - a distinction (70%) average across all completed law courses and be in your ultimate or penultimate semester of your degree.


Topics and Supervision

Students are now required to nominate two academic staff members as potential supervisors for the course. You can choose to do this by preparing:

  • One topic and two prospective supervisors OR
  • Two topics with a different supervisor for each topic.


Begin thinking about your proposed topic/s and prepare an outline

The outline should comprise of;

  • the proposed research topic and its boundaries;
  • the key issues to be addressed;
  • the methodology adopted to address the issues;
  • a timetable proposal for writing the thesis;
  • a preliminary literature review and a bibliography; and
  • the list of literature consulted.

The outline must be such as to convince a supervisor that the topic is sufficiently developed and refined and that the paper can be successfully completed within the semester. It is expected that the outline is a maximum of 2000 words in length.

If empirical research is to be carried out, you must indicate that any relevant ethics approval has been sought. In practice, you should get ethics clearance at least six to eight weeks before the research is scheduled to occur. You will also need to consider the feasibility of completing the research in time to enable submission of your paper by the due date.


Approaching a potential supervisor

You will need to discuss your proposed research topic/s with two ANU College of Law academic staff members. You will need to approach supervisors that have the appropriate knowledge in your research field. Please refer to the List of Potential Supervisors document to find out potential supervisors availablilities and thier field/s of expertise. 

Please note that whilst every effort will be made to assign students with their preferred supervisor, cicumstances may require the allocation of another supervior.

Submitting an application

Once your supervisors have confirmed that they are willing to supervise you, please obtain an approval email from them and upload it when you submit your online application. Please note that the allocation of supervisors is based on academic availability. Whilst every effort will be made to assign you to one of the two supervisors selected, circumstances may require you to be allocated to another supervisor.

Applications for semester 1, 2023 will be open between 25/07/2022 - 22/09/2022. No late applications will be considered.


Outcome and Enrolment

Students who applied for a Graduate Research Unit will be notified of the outcome mid-November 2022. We will also send you a permission code to enrol into your course at that time. 

Updated:  10 August 2015/Responsible Officer:  College General Manager, ANU College of Law/Page Contact:  Law Marketing Team