Typical workload and assessment
Each honours year involves a mix of seminars and a thesis. Some honours years require three seminars and a shorter thesis (12,000-15,000 words). Others involve two seminars and a longer thesis, up to 20,000 words. Seminar work is marked by the academic staff member leading the class. In some departments, a second academic staff member will mark work written for seminars. A thesis is read by at least two academics in the field other than the student's supervisor. Examiners write detailed reports on each thesis, which the student receives, and assign a tentative grade.
The final grades for each thesis are decided by the department or program staff collectively. Each department or program ranks all honours candidates based on their thesis and seminar results. These departmental results and nominations for the University Medals are then considered by the Faculty Honours Board, which includes the Honours Coordinators from every department in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences.
Honours awards and classes
The classes of honours awarded are:
- Honours Class I (where the Honours mark is in the range of 80 - 100)
- Honours Class II Division 1 (75 - 79)
- Honours Class II Division 2 (70 - 74)
- Honours Class III (65 - 69)
- Pass (50 - 64)
Joint and double honours
It is possible to complete either double honours or joint honours in some Arts subjects. Double honours involves completing all the honours requirements in one subject area and then in another and thus normally takes an additional year. In joint honours the two units of study are more generally closely related and a special program of study is designed for the honours year. This will usually entail doing approximately half the final honours requirements for two subject areas.