ARA3023 : Dissertation

  • Module Leader(s): Dr Jane Webster
  • Owning School:
Semester 2 Credit Value: 30
ECTS Credits: 15.0


In this 30-credit module you will complete the independent piece of written research for which you prepared during the Dissertation Research Training module. The outcome will be a Dissertation of 10,000-12,000 words, bound and formatted according to module specifications. The Dissertation will represent 300 hours of independent study with guidance from your supervisor.
Time-management and planning will be especially important during this module as it is your responsibility to arrange and attend at least four meetings with your supervisor. You should provide samples of written work to discuss at these meetings, and submit them at least one week before the appointment. Make sure that you complete a final draft of the Dissertation well in advance of the submission date to ensure that you have sufficient time for proof reading, checking references etc.
A well-managed Dissertation can be the most rewarding part of your entire degree programme, allowing you to put into practice the knowledge and research skills you have accumulated throughout the degree. The completed Dissertation comprises 100% of the marks for this 30-credit module.

The aims of this module are:
To enable students to undertake an independent piece of research under supervision.
To enable students to practise skills taught in the Dissertation Research Training module.
To improve skills in written presentation and research.
To provide an opportunity to reflect upon how studies might be continued at postgraduate level.

Outline Of Syllabus

The Syllabus consists of 300 hours of private study, supported by meetings with the dissertation supervisor. You will complete a Dissertation of 10,000-12,000 words, which should include the following components:
1.       title page;
2.       150-word abstract;
3.       table of contents, with page numbers;
4.       list of illustrations, with page numbers;
5.       chapters with numbered titles;
6.       if necessary, appendices containing data referred to in the text;
7.       bibliography (formatted according to instructions).
NB: the word limit does not include the bibliography. An appendix that contains essential data (for example a spreadsheet or database listing features and dimensions of sites or artefacts) will not count towards the word limit, but an appendix that consists of text (for example supplementary discussion of a topic that has not been included in one of your chapters) will count towards the limit. It is better to incorporate all such discussion within your chapters.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion1148:00148:0050% of guided independent study
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading591:0059:0020% of guided independent study
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDissertation/project related supervision51:005:00Individual dissertation supervision
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study881:0088:0030% of guided independent study
Jointly Taught With
Code Title
ARA3099Dissertation (JH Archaeology and History)
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Tutorials with staff will develop students' skills in time-management, project-management, initiative and team-working. This will be achieved through making it the responsibility of students to arrange times to see their supervisors, by ensuring that students prepare in advance for tutorials by submitting work at least one week before meetings, and through discussion of progress with their supervisor. Supervisors will engage in critical dialogue on submitted drafts and make recommendations for improvements.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Dissertation2M100Dissertation, 10-12,000 words, bound and formatted according to instructions
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

In managing their own time and research programme, students will implement the proposal that they submitted in the preceding module ARA3028. The final dissertation will involve the production of a completed piece of work according to specified criteria.

Reading Lists


Disclaimer: The University will use all reasonable endeavours to deliver modules in accordance with the descriptions set out in this catalogue. Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information, however, the University reserves the right to introduce changes to the information given including the addition, withdrawal or restructuring of modules if it considers such action to be necessary.