Confidential material in your thesis

The University recognises that in exceptional circumstances, a thesis may contain confidential material which cannot be made freely accessible for a period of time.

  • Confidentiality may relate to the substance of the information or the source of the information.
  • Issues of confidentiality arise during the collection and storage of data, as well as the writing up and submission of the thesis.
  • Students are advised to carefully read those sections of the Code of Practice—Research, and Ethics guidelines which relate to confidential and ethical issues in the collection and storage of data.
  • At all times you must ensure that the rights of individuals who have participated in the research are protected.
  • Digitisation of Theses

Library Access

At the time of submission of the thesis, the student will be requested to complete a form to advise the Librarian on access rights to the thesis.

  • Normally, the University expects that free access to all theses deposited in the Library should be permitted.
  • Where access is restricted it should be for as short a time as possible.
  • For further information refer to the Higher Degree Research Supervision and Resources Policy , and seek the advice of your supervisor and the Research and Innovation Division.

Contractual Relationships

Issues of confidentiality may also arise when students have entered into any contractual relationships with external organisations or individuals (including scholarships provided by industry partners).

  • Students and their supervisors should make themselves familiar with any contractual obligations that arise in these situations.
  • The onus is on the supervisor to inform the student fully, in writing before enrolment, of any restrictions on disclosure or communication with colleagues likely to result from such arrangements.
  • For further information see the Higher Degree Research Supervision and Resources Policy 

Intellectual Property Policy

The University's Intellectual Property Policy sets out guidelines for determining ownership and exploitation of intellectual property. In providing guidelines the University acknowledges that procedures will vary from case to case within the guidelines outlined in this policy document.

It is accepted that the originators, whether staff or students, need to be involved in the management of any intellectual property pursued through University procedures outlined in the policy.

  • The onus is on the supervisor to inform the student fully, in writing before enrolment, of any aspects of the research which are likely to result in the generation of intellectual property.
  • As part of the annual review process, students and supervisors should also report on whether there have been any changes to the research program which may have resulted in commercially viable intellectual property.
  • When the University asserts its proprietary interest in intellectual property developed by staff in the course of their employment, and by students enrolled in the University and using its resources, it will offer a range of services to assist with commercialisation of that intellectual property.

Students are advised to familiarise themselves with issues of Intellectual Property as set out in the Higher Degree Research Supervision and Resources Policy, and the Intellectual Property Policy.


Policy on Authorship and Publication

Research students will normally be primary authors on research publications which arise from their thesis work.

  • If a research student and his/her supervisor co-author a publication, the research student will normally be listed as the primary author.
  • This order of authorship may not apply to those academic disciplines which follow a policy of listing authors alphabetically, regardless of the extent of their input.
  • For further information see the Policy on Authorship and the Code of Practice—Research.
Last reviewed: 13 August, 2015
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