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Fourth year psychology

Key course information for 2023 students.

Welcome to your fourth year in Psychology at Deakin! Congratulations on being accepted into one of the fourth year courses – they are very competitive, so it really is a fantastic achievement. We are sure you have some questions about what happens next so we have made you a list of key dates so far (see below).

Research projects and supervisors

As part of a fourth year psychology program, you will be allocated a year-long research project with a supervisor. You will then have an opportunity to see a list of the projects at the start of March 2023. We will do our best to try and accommodate everyone’s preferences, and we aim to give you a project that is in your top ten. Meeting times and other requirements for research project work will be negotiated with your supervisor. Each project will be listed with the number of students that supervisors can take into the project. While some projects are in groups (there is more than one student on the project), every thesis and topic within the larger project is individualised. Everyone will individually submit and individually be marked on their thesis.

Note: Part-time students starting in 2023 will not preference or be allocated a research project until 2024. Students finishing in T3 will not be disadvantaged in project preferencing. Preferencing system is not first in best dressed.

Here are examples from projects in 2023

Research project key dates

  • Research project listing will be available (Thursday 2 March 2023)
  • Research project listing and preference system opens (Wednesday 8 March 2023)
  • Research project preference closes for allocating (Monday 13 March 2023 @midnight)
  • Research project allocations released (Friday March 24 2023 @ 5pm)


Trimester 1

In Trimester 1, you will be taking two course-work units Psychological Assessment (HPS431/715) and Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses (HPS432/742). Both have online pre-recorded lectures which you will be expected to watch weekly. Further, both units have face-to-face (online or on-campus) seminars/computer practicals. These are not compulsory, but to get the most out of your studies, we strongly encourage you to attend. Seminars are recorded.

Campus students
We manage our own timetabling within the course and do not use a study timetable. You will be asked to preference your seminar contact hours late-February. Both coursework units are two hours per week. We will have a mix of day and night times available. More information to come in 2023.

Integrity Unit (HAI010)
The unit will be zero credit points, an ungraded pass, will not count towards WAM and will take approximately 2-3 hours to complete. This unit provides foundation knowledge and skills regarding academic integrity and is compulsory for all commencing fourth-year students.

Trimester 2

We will begin trimester two one week earlier than the undergraduate program (Trimester 2 commences 10 July). You will be expected to attend classes a week earlier from 3 July. In the past students have found the submission of the thesis, plus classes, plus assignments and exams stressful. We have made these changes to start a week early to give you more time at the end of the trimester to focus on your thesis. This means there is a shorter mid-trimester break of two weeks (from 19 June to 2 July).

In Trimester 2, you will undertake a further two course-work units: Applied Counselling Skills (Advanced) (HPS433/HPY710) and Psychology Research Methods (Advanced) (HPS434/HPY715). Both have online pre-recorded lectures which you will be expected to watch weekly. Further, both units have face-to-face (online or on-campus) seminars/computer practicals. Please note, seminars for ‘Applied Counselling Skills (Advanced)’ are compulsory, and you will fail the unit if you do not meet the minimum requirements. Psychology Research Methods (Advanced) computer practicals are not compulsory, but we strongly encourage you to attend to get the most out of your studies.

2023 Psychology 4th year orientation session

The T1 orientation session for 2023 will be held on Tuesday 28 February, 10am–12pm . This session is an excellent opportunity to learn more about the course, meet the fourth year teaching team, ask questions and meet your fellow fourth year students.

T1 orientation session

Session name: Introduction to Fourth Year Psychology Courses
Session date: Tuesday 28 February 2023
Session time: 10am–12pm

Link to Zoom –  To be advised
Link to recording: UniStart (Undergraduate) - To be advised

Fourth year Cloud Deakin site

The CloudDeakin site 'Psychology Fourth Year' is a one-stop shop for all fourth year course information, where you can find information about your course, symposiums, study groups and research/professional opportunities. We encourage you to use this site to introduce yourself to your peers, and support one another throughout the year. Please check regularly to find out about course information.

Study groups

Psychology fourth year is typically intensive and stressful, but also incredibly rewarding. As staff, some of our best memories of fourth year were the other students in our courses . Your student cohort often form part of your future professional network, but they also are hugely important for offering social connection and stress relief, long-term friendships based on shared experience, values, and interests, plus opportunities to study and learn together! We strongly recommend you make the effort to connect with each other. To encourage this, we will run study groups in Trimester 1 and 2. Information will be posted on the CloudDeakin site 'Psychology Fourth Year' in Week 0 (Orientation week).


Course directors (David and Mel) run regular symposiums throughout Trimesters 1 and 2 for all fourth year students. These are a great way to chat to other students, as well as to hear about potential career and study pathways beyond fourth year. Symposiums are not compulsory or graded. They run on a Wednesday lunchtime (12-1pm) are open to everyone and will be online and recorded. Details (including online zoom links will be posted on the 'Psychology Fourth Year' CloudDeakin course site. Example topics include:

  • Day in the life of a clinical/forensic/organisational psychologist.
  • Career path and day in the life of a counsellor.
  • Employability – meet employers for jobs you can get after fourth year.
  • Inspiring researchers.
  • Pathways to further study (MPP, MClinPsych, MOrgPsych, DPsych, PhD).
  • Tips and tricks for your thesis.

Fourth year team and contact details

For updates check the 'Psychology Fourth Year' CloudDeakin course site.


Course directors

Image of Dr David Skvarc

Image of Dr Melissa Hayden

Dr David Skvarc Dr Melissa Hayden

We are really looking forward to meeting you and getting started in 2023.

David and Mel

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