Module Catalogue 2019/20

TCP8911 : Research Design

  • Offered for Year: 2019/20
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Diego Garcia Mejuto
  • Demonstrator: Dr Harrison Smith, Dr Neil Adrian Powe
  • Owning School: Architecture, Planning & Landscape
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0
Pre Requisites
Pre Requisite Comment


Co Requisites
Co Requisite Comment



To develop knowledge and skills in methods of evaluation, analysis and research that benefit planning practitioners.
To aid students in developing appropriate research strategies for their specialised study and their dissertation at postgraduate level.
To introduce students to a range of different types of research for different purposes and contexts.
To introduce students to the basic principles of commissioning research for a range of professional purposes.
To stimulate students into thinking about their dissertations early and identifying and refining a research topic.

This module prepares students to undertake research for their final dissertation and for planning policy development and practice.
It explores a range of approaches to the design and undertaking of methodologically robust research. It raises students’ awareness of the rigorous standards expected of both practice and academic research.
The module also helps students identify and refine their final dissertation topic

Outline Of Syllabus

Introduction to the module and postgraduate and professional research standards
Thinking about problems and what interests you
Basic principles of research
Building a Literature Review
Broad methodological approaches and frameworks
Data collection methods Qualitative and Quantitative
Analysing data
Policy analysis
Information sources
Triangulation of data and evidence
Engaging with stakeholders
Presenting your research (dissertation and other conventions)

Learning Outcomes

Intended Knowledge Outcomes

To develop an awareness of methods of evaluation, analysis and research and their role in academic or practice social science and/ or design-based research
To develop an understanding of the use of these methods in evaluating policy
To develop an awareness of the different stakeholders that need to be considered in research processes and appropriate methods for doing so

Intended Skill Outcomes

Subject Specific: methods, the ability to create an appropriate design and methodology to investigate a specific research topic
Cognitive: Ability to critically analyse literature, policy research and research proposals

Key: skills in a combination of quantitative, qualitative and research methods and writing clear and concise research reports

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion126:0026:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture112:0022:00Combination of lectures and tutorials
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading126:0026:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study126:0026:00N/A
Jointly Taught With
Code Title
ARC8107Researchers in sustainability: Research Methodology and Methods
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Research methods introduced in lectures and discussed in tutorials

Reading Lists

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Research proposal1M100Integrated evaluation plan and research proposal (3000 words)
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Tests understanding of appropriate use and application of research methods and leads into development of dissertation /design thesis. This module must be passed before a student can progress to dissertation (TCP8099 or GTP8099).


Past Exam Papers

General Notes


Disclaimer: The information contained within the Module Catalogue relates to the 2019/20 academic year. In accordance with University Terms and Conditions, the University makes all reasonable efforts to deliver the modules as described. Modules may be amended on an annual basis to take account of changing staff expertise, developments in the discipline, the requirements of external bodies and partners, and student feedback. Module information for the 2020/21 entry will be published here in early-April 2019. Queries about information in the Module Catalogue should in the first instance be addressed to your School Office.