Civil Engineering

CIV4210 & CIV4211 – Final Year Projects A & B


The project units CIV4210 and CIV4211 are challenging opportunities to pursue an individual project independently and are likely to require extended effort. The two units together include one or a combination of design, theoretical, experimental, review and investigation works that will make a new contribution to the body of knowledge. Each student will be required to undertake a research project from a number of topics offered. The student will be supervised by an academic staff member throughout the research project.

Learning outcomes

After the completion of this unit, students will be able to:

1. Develop a plan for their investigation/research which addresses four broad issues:

  • Why undertake the project? Students should be able to explain the relevance of the work and how it relates to research/practice needs in the discipline.
  • What will be the scope of the project? Students should be able to develop a concise statement of the specific aims/objectives of the work and how that addresses a knowledge gap.
  • How will the project be undertaken? Students should be able to describe the main tasks to be undertaken and identify the resources required to complete the project.
  • When will the work be undertaken? Students should be able to develop a work plan for the project which identifies the timing for each primary task.

2. Undertake the research, demonstrating a capacity to:

  • conduct an extensive review of relevant literature.
  • follow the identified tasks according to the plan, making adjustments as required to respond to project outcomes so that the project objectives are still met.
  • critically assess their own performance in managing the project.

3. Effectively report, both orally and in writing, on the research, giving a clear account of: 

  • project aims and context,
  • sources of data/information and adopted methodology,
  • project outcomes, their usefulness and limitations


The assessment comprises major components which reflect the objectives outlined above:

  • Research Proposal
  • Interim Research Report
  • Technical Research Paper
  • Oral Presentation 

Introductory Remarks

Civil Engineering students with minimum 120 credit points and have an average > 70% are eligible to enrol this unit. The unit consists of project work, skill workshops and seminars. Learning in this unit is mainly through the self-guided project which has a number of components which build to form the final technical research paper. Project topic preferences are submitted via a survey link before the start of the semester. Project allocation is announced by the 1st week of Semester 1. This mechanism provide students the opportunity to discuss their projects with their supervisor(s), and receive guidance on literature review and project planning in the early stages of Semester 1.

It is the student’s responsibility to liaise directly with the nominated supervisor regarding details of the research topic and arrangements for supervision. Appointments for meetings with the supervisor should be made at regular intervals (preferably weekly) to ensure adequate feedback. As an absolute minimum, meetings with the supervisor should be scheduled at the following stages of the project:

  • prior to finalisation of proposal,
  • at important milestones of the research,
  • for discussion of structure and content of final report and oral presentation.

For all laboratory- and field-based projects, a compulsory risk assessment and laboratory induction process must be undertaken by the students. Ethics approval is mandatory for any work involving human or animal experimentation. Please consult your supervisors for details. Failure to obtain appropriate risk or ethics approval may result in a mark of zero being awarded for the subject.

An introductory lecture on research project, expectations and assessment, including some advice on the poster presentation and also library training on online searching and reference (EndNote) will be given in Week 1. A one hour lecture on research methodology focusing on literature review and development of research methodology will be given in Week 2. Two research writing lectures on preparation of interim report and technical report will be given in Week 6 of Semester 1 and 2 respectively while lecture on oral presentation will be given in Week 10 of Semester 2.

Once you are enrolled in project units, visit Moodle on a regular basis to keep yourself updated about course requirements and deadlines. For further enquiry, please email the Final Year Project Coordinator, Dr Daniel Kong at Room 5-4-61, Tel: (+603) 5514 4950, Email: