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EDU8010 : EdD Core Module 1 Practices of Inquiry: introduction to epistemological and methodological considerations through self-reflection and peer interviewing

  • Offered for Year: 2022/23
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Pamela Woolner
  • Owning School: Education, Communication & Language Sci
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


The aim of this module is to introduce doctoral students to a form of ethnographic practice and to the pragmatic theoretical and ethical considerations of interviewing. While most students will have had some generic research methods input, this module, with its focus on self-study and collaborative practice, will provide a space for reflective development as well as an iterative focus on research design and modes of analysis.

Outline Of Syllabus

Pre-course requisite: Written biography describing personal pathway to doctoral study.

Introductory Online Session: Introduction to the module; clarifying biography task.

Session 1: Discussion of positioning and use of own experience; introduction to auto-ethnography.
Between session activity: Dyadic interviews conducted, reflective writing on the experience of process
Session 2: Collaborative review of process; Introduction to modes of analysis (qualitative, quantitative, mixed methods) for texts, audio and transcripts.
Between session activity: Texts, audio and transcripts analysed.
Session 3: Presentations of analysis, participant validation, reflections on ethics and validity.
Closing Online Session: Discussion of issues students would like to explore further (e.g. impact of mediation in interview, iterative interviewing, visual methods). Identifying the focus of the reflective assignment.

Assessment: Formative assessment will be available from the academic facilitator in every session, peer assessment and feedback will for part of the second and third sessions.
Summative assessment will be an assignment: A reflection on the learning generated about the account an individual gives of their experience, focusing on either auto-ethnography, interview practices or analysis issues (2,500 words).

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture31:003:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion120:0020:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading112:0012:00Analysis
Structured Guided LearningStructured research and reading activities25:0010:00Reading around and reflecting on interviewing and analysis
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops31:003:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyReflective learning activity14:004:00Writing biography
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery11:001:00Closing Session: Synchronous online timetabled
Guided Independent StudyStudent-led group activity110:0010:00Interviewing and Transcribing
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study312:0036:00Reading on chosen focus
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesModule talk11:001:00Introductory Session: Synchronous online - timetabled
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The module centres on the discovery, through practice, of issues relating to the account an individual gives of their experience which will be relevant to students’ own research projects and to their reading of other research. It is particularly important for their developing understanding that they experience being researcher and also being researched. Starting from biographical accounts of the student’s own experience coming to the EdD makes the module immediately accessible, but the iterative pattern of action and reflection will enable rapid development of a sophisticated understanding. There is a balance between the transmission of methodological expertise with paired activity and independent learning. Key outcomes are critical thinking and personal autonomy as a researcher, so the framework for teaching and assessment reflects this.

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Report1M1002500 words
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Reflective log1MReflections on writing experience, interviewing and analysis
Report1MReports to peers on interviewing and analysis
Assessment Rationale And Relationship


Reading Lists