Dissertation information

The dissertation should reflect your interest in a particular field of surgery based on research project written in the format of an academic composition of no more than 20,000 words equivalent, in part or in whole of that required of a successful peer-reviewed journal publication. It encompasses self-directed study with supervision by one or more academics, one of whom should be an academic staff member of the University. (The Discipline of Surgery is able to assist you if your supervisor is not affiliated with the University of Sydney).

You are ultimately responsible for your own work which is undertaken in collaboration with a local supervisor who is agreeable to be responsible for you offering tailored guidance and constructive feedback throughout the course of your research. You are responsible for approaching a local supervisor at your hospital and ensuring there is clear communication in terms of individual responsibilities, a common understanding of the aims of your project including key milestones, a realistic working timetable and opportunities for regular meetings with feedback to ensure that the project stays on track.

The format of your dissertation should broadly follow that of an Original Article as published in the issues of the ANZ J. Surg. It should include an Introduction followed by an Aim(s) (research questions), the Methods used, Results obtained, a critical Discussion of your findings in light of existing knowledge and nay limitations of the study, followed by Concluding Remarks and/or Recommendations together with a list of pertinent correctly cited References.

You are encouraged to consult the Dissertation Library for examples of previous successful projects, consult the staff of the Discipline of Surgery for any specific queries you may have regarding the write-up and submission of your Project and read the Thesis Guide published by the Sydney University Postgraduate Representative Association (SUPRA).

The dissertation must be undertaken during your candidature such that any work or publications written prior to or outside the enrolment period is not acceptable. There is an option to submit published work based on research undertaken during the period of candidature and this may be enclosed as an appendix to the detailed body of the work. Suitable projects for the dissertation may include: the collection and analysis of new data based on a common theme, the analysis of an established dataset, a randomized clinical trial, a meta-analysis, a systematic review, a critical narrative review, a prospective or retrospective cohort study.

Candidates are required to discuss their Project with their local supervisor before commencement of their research including seeking appropriate ethics approval and statistical support. All students are required to comply with the Academic honesty Guidelines of the University of Sydney and all written work must by scrutinized by Turnitin for plagiarism prior to submission.

For any additional, specific concerns or queries, students are encouraged to seek assistance from the Director of Postgraduate Surgical Studies, Professor Pierre Chapuis.

Please note: The dissertation is assembled in two parts (Dissertation A and Dissertation B) both of which to be completed in a minimum of one year of full time study or two years of part time study.

How the dissertation units work

SURG5007 Dissertation A and SURG5008 Dissertation B are the two units that you must enrol in whilst working on your dissertation. That is, it is anticipated that candidates will work on a specified research project under their supervisor during both parts A and B of the dissertation unit.

Students must enrol in Dissertation A prior to, or concurrent with, Dissertation B and be enrolled in Dissertation B in order to submit their dissertation. Your dissertation is due for submission on the census date following the semester in which you enrol in Dissertation B:


 Enrolment in Dissertation B Date due 
 Semester 1 31st August same year
 Semester 2 31st March following year

Enrolment in Dissertation A and B

You only enrol in Dissertation A SURG5007 and SURG5008 once.

After enrolling in Dissertation B your project will need to be submitted by the appropriate due date (i.e. 31st August or 31st March).

Dissertation guidelines, registration & submission requirements

The dissertation guidelines, submission requirements and cover sheet are accessible below. Please note that all enquiries regarding the dissertation should be directed towards your supervisor in the first instance, or the Postgraduate Coursework Coordinator - Prof Pierre Chapuis.

Prior to enrolling in Dissertation A and B, please complete and email the Dissertation Registration Form to Farida Bolano in the Discipline of Surgery, farida.bolano@sydney.edu.au.