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Arch Dis Child. 2018 Sep;103(9):820-827. doi: 10.1136/archdischild-2018-315340. Epub 2018 May 26.

How to do a postgraduate research project and write a minor thesis.

Duke T1,2,3.

Author information

Centre for International Child Health, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
School of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Papua New Guinea, Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.
Paediatric Intensive Care Unit, Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.


Many universities and colleges in low-income and middle-income countries require a masters dissertation or thesis for as part of postgraduate training, and some colleges offer a 1-year to 2-year diploma of child health as a clinical qualification to enable skills in child health for generalists, or as part of the early phase of paediatric training. This paper describes the stages of doing a research project for such a masters or diploma, and describes in detail how to write a minor thesis. The paper is designed to provide a practical approach for junior researchers, and their supervisors. Colleges differ in their formal requirements of a minor thesis (word count, line spacing, referencing style), but this paper outlines the principles and practical issues rarely covered elsewhere.


low and middle income countries; medical education; paediatric training; research training

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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