Unit Co-ordinator: Dr Yash Shrivastava

Unit A is marked initially as satisfied/not satisfied. A mark of 'not satisfied' requires you to repeat unit A, and is given for: not submitting various components in a timely manner, an inadequate Progress Report, and/or missing three-quarters of meetings with supervisor(s). A mark of 'satisfied' allows you to progress to unit B.

A mark for Unit B and Unit A is assigned as the combined mark of Final Treatise, Project Management and Project Presentation (and penalty if any).

Where you have an external supervisor, you must also give them a copy of each submission (an electronic copy is sufficient).

This web page draws upon Reference [9] for various components.

Unit Assessment Components
Unit A Topic Proposal satisfied/not satisfied
Unit A Progress Report satisfied/not satisfied
Unit B Draft Treatise satisfied/not satisfied
Unit B Final Treatise 60%
Unit B Project Presentation 20%
Unit B Project Management 20%
Unit B Penalty scheme see below

Note that for submission of the Topic Proposal, Progress Report and Draft Treatise (but not the Final Treatise), there is no penalty although it may be taken into account in the Project Management mark.

The unit assessment is based on six components:

Topic Proposal

The Topic Proposal is a plan, about 2-3 pages in length. It should be written in consultation with your supervisor and give a brief description of the project being undertaken. It should also include a time schedule (a project plan) for the various tasks involved in the project work. In particular, if any purchase-delivery time is required (for building experimental equipment etc.), the proposal must include allowances for this. Failure to submit a satisfactory proposal may result in discontinuation of the unit for that semester. There is no formal penalty for late submission of the Proposal, however your supervisor(s) may take a dim view of your not having handed one in.

The things that are looked for in a Topic Proposal are summarized (rather too briefly) in this list of what is looked for in a treatise.

The project plan is a breakdown of all the tasks, both administrative and engineering, that are required to complete your project, together with the time allocated to each task and the ordering of these in time. The idea is that you know what you have to complete each week in order to complete the overall project on time. There will always be the unexpected, but by careful planning you will be better prepared for these. To quote Dwight D. Eisenhower: 'Plans are nothing; planning is everything'. A necessary starting point in doing a project plan is to think about what your project involves. Various software packages are available to help you draw up a plan, or you can simply use paper and pencil. There are various books in the Library on project planning. This is to ensure that you are aware of what is required in your project. Discuss this with your supervisor.

Progress Report

The progress report should include 1) an introduction, 2) a literature survey, of 5--10 pages, in a form similar to that which will appear in the final treatise, 3) a report on the work carried out thus far, and 4) a revised proposal/plan for the following semester's work. You should consult your supervisor(s) when preparing this report for advice regarding the content and structure of this document.

The progress report will be marked by your supervisor(s) according to whether it is Satisfactory/Not Satisfactory for progression to Unit B. Progress at this stage should be consistent with approximately 60 hours of work on the part of the student. You must attain a Satisfactory grade for Unit A in order to progress to Unit B. The assessment of Unit A is made by means of your regular contact with your supervisor(s), by your various submissions and through the Progress Report. If you do not attain the required grade you will have to repeat Unit A in a following semester, but the same topic and supervisor may no longer be available.

Draft Treatise

The draft of the treatise should be in the same format as the final treatise will be, but lacking final results and conclusions, and the 'polish' of the final treatise. The purpose of this is both to encourage you to continue writing as you go and to obtain feedback from your supervisor(s). There is no formal mark attached to the draft treatise, but inattention to the draft treatise and delays in submission can lead to a poor Management mark.

Written Treatise

You are required to submit the written treatise covering your work on the project online via blackboard. If you have an external supervisor, then it is advised that you also mail them a copy to save marking time.

Your Treatise is marked by your supervisor(s), together with any external supervisor(s) that you have, plus other academic staff members at the discretion of the Project Co-ordinator. If the mark falls outside the range 50--74, then other academic staff members will also read and mark the treatise.  Honours theses are always assigned a second marker. Additional markers may also be used, if the 1st marker differs significantly from your WAM, or if the 1st and 2nd markers differ significantly. These markers are all electrical engineers, but are not necessarily an expert in the field of your topic.


You are required to give a seminar presentation on your work. This will be scheduled in the first couple of days of the examination period.

Your seminar will be assessed by two members of staff, not including your supervisor (as a general rule). For more information, see the Presentation Guidelines. If desired, you can also perform a demonstration, for your supervisor(s), in addition to your presentation.


Your supervisor(s) will mark you on the basis of how well you have managed your time and resources during the semester(s). Setting and meeting goals, managing your time, and working well with others are all important aspects of project work. Regular meetings with your supervisor(s) is one of the best ways of showing your good management of your project.

There are no fixed rules for making this assessment, but the following factors are commonly considered:

  • The amount of supervisor interaction: A good student keeps supervisors and others informed, and actively contributes to decisions on how to proceed,
  • The conceptual understanding of the work: A student will get initial descriptions from a supervisor, but tends to come to know as much as the supervisor about the topic and the theory behind it, as the project proceeds. This knowledge is evidenced in consultations, which typically consume an hour a week once the semester is well under way,
  • Direction and initiative in the execution of project: Was a good plan drawn up? Did you cope well with delays, anticipate problems, allow for complications, and adjust the plan accordingly?,
  • Diligence: Evidence of continuous progress and reasonable achievement shows that a project is being attacked with effort in accordance with the point value of the unit, and
  • Quality of submissions: The quality of the draft submission and the project plan, the provision of time and effort to get formatting and proof-reading done, and so forth, all indicate concern and ability to present professional documentation of the work.

A penalty equivalent to two (2) marks per calendar day will be applied to treatises that are submitted late. Note also that you can only submit your treatise via Blackboard. This penalty is subtracted from your total Project mark, not just from your Treatise mark.


The total Project mark is then:

Project % = (Presentation %) x 0.2 + (Management %) x 0.2 + (Treatise %) x 0.6 - late penalty