1. Where do I find out about Media and Communication Honours?
You’ll find most of what you’ll need here at consiliencelab.org.au. This has information about applying, what honours is, as well as previous student honours work (that is still being built). The official page is at http://www.rmit.edu.au/study-with-us/levels-of-study/undergraduate-study/honours-degrees/bh066/#pageId=overview, this has the program outline, links to the application forms, and so on.
2. If I want to know more?
Information sessions are held during semester two every year. Email if you would like to be invited (current students in the School of Media and Communication receive an email automatically). If you can’t make an information session just email.
3. What is it?
It is a research year, there is coursework (see 1) but it is all about what you are investigating. We expect the research to reflect what your supervisor is doing. We expect your supervisor to be doing something that fits within the larger research aims of the school.
4. How do I find a supervisor?
You do not need a supervisor to apply and to be considered for honours. Supervisors are usually allocated at the beginning of semester one.
5. How much is it?
It is HECs funded.
6. What are the entry requirements? Who can apply? How?
You are required to have completed a first degree in a relevant discipline. We expect a minimum 70% average for your degree. We very happily accept students from other universities. You apply direct to RMIT, the university sets the dates for this (see 2). Decisions and offers are made very early December.
7. What if I don’t have a degree in a relevant area but want to do honours in (for example) journalism, creative writing, cinema studies, film making…..?
Then have a look at our coursework masters degrees, or graduate diplomas. Honours is advanced study in a field you already know about.
8. What can I do to improve my chances of being accepted?
Get very good academic results. Tell us why you want to do honours and what you hope honours will let you go on to achieve afterwards.
9. Why do people do honours?
Because they would like to continue at university and do a PhD, because they like exploring ideas, because they aren’t sure what they want to do in their careers yet, because they would like the opportunity or experience to do study something in a very detailed, substantial way.
10. Can I see examples of honours work?
Yes, see http://www.consiliencelab.org.au/research/
11. Can I do honours part time?
Students often ask whether the Bachelor of Media and Communication (Honours) can be done part time. It can. The reason it can is largely because most programs at RMIT are expected to be available part time. Is it a good idea to do it part time? Not really.
First of all, honours is and requires a lot of time and effort. It is the most intensive academic year you will have at university (and I include doing a PhD in that). So you’d sort of think doing it part time would be a good idea, wouldn’t you? Except, partly because it is intense, my experience in seeing honours students is that full time is the best way to do it. Why?
Well, bit of background. Full time honours involves 9 contact hours in semester 1 and 3 in semester 2. Going part time changes this to 6 hours in semester 1, 3 in semester 2, then 3 hours in semester three, and no contact in semester 4. So full time versus part time saves a total of 3 hours contact, in one semester out of 4.
Next, most who do honours are on their way to somewhere else. Career, further study. It is something you don’t want to dilly dally over because honours, ideally, is a big step for the next big thing you want to achieve. So stretching it over two years, often, interrupts this. For example, if you’re working full time and it is the job you want, why are you doing honours? If you’re working full time and it is not the job you want, then do honours full time and work part time. Seriously.
No matter whether you are full time or part time you have to be highly organised to succeed in honours. Much more organised than you ever needed to be in your first undergraduate degree. If you can get properly organised then you can do honours in a year, because if you’re properly organised (which means knowing when you have time, what you should be doing in that time, and doing it effectively in the time you have) you will have the time to do it. There have been students who have done well in honours who have full time jobs. They were, to be fair, highly organised. But if you don’t get organised then going part time isn’t the problem going part time solves and you will still find you don’t seem to have time to get it done.
Finally, honours because of how we teach and manage it builds a very strong community. This really helps your learning and is one of the things that makes honours an outstanding year for everyone involved. Part time, you get this in year one, but in your second year, when you are now doing the hard work of writing, you generally won’t know anyone. Can make it a horrid year.