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EDU8019 : Dissertation/ Action Research Portfolio

  • Offered for Year: 2024/25
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Lisa Ramshaw
  • Deputy Module Leader: Dr James Stanfield
  • Owning School: Education, Communication & Language Sci
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus

Your programme is made up of credits, the total differs on programme to programme.

Semester 3 Credit Value: 60
ECTS Credits: 30.0
European Credit Transfer System


• To enable students to develop an in-depth knowledge and understanding of a topic of their choice within the field of Education.
• To enable students to develop their knowledge and understanding of the research process
by devising and conducting an original investigation.
• To provide students with the opportunity both to extend their repertoire of methodological skills and demonstrate a capacity for critical reflexivity.

The module provides students with experience of undertaking a substantial, independent empirical enquiry into an approved educational topic. The research project will be presented in a report of 15,000 words. Supervisors will offer guidance about the choice of format and feasibility of the topic (as well as the suitability of its proposed methods of investigation).

All research projects, irrespective of format or topic, will be expected to conform to the following requirements:

• The project will draw upon primary or secondary data to address the research question (or questions).
• The research will be appropriately contextualised with critical reference made to relevant published sources.
• An appraisal of the theoretical underpinnings of the research will be undertaken.
• A reflexive commentary on research methods will be provided and the strengths and limitations of the design discussed.
• The ethical issues raised by the research will explored.
• The findings will be reported in an unambiguous and transparent manner.
• The discussion will include reference to the practical implications of the findings as well as indicating possible future lines of enquiry.

Outline Of Syllabus

• This is not a taught module, although a small number of seminars are organised to support students in their dissertation work.
• Students will have regular meetings on a one-to-one basis with supervisor.
• Students will also be provided with detailed guidance on dissertation writing.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion1580:00580:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching42:008:00Four seminars (introduction, research design, analysis and sharing findings)
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDissertation/project related supervision121:0012:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship


Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Dissertation3M100Dissertation of 15,000 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The assessment will require the student to demonstrate their capacity to devise and carry-out an in-depth, independent enquiry in their selected educational field. It will reveal a critical grasp and detailed knowledge of the relevant specialist literature in the area, including salient concepts and theories. It will also provide evidence of the students’ capacity both to evaluate extant research and to reflect critically on the research process. In addition, it will require the student to demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of methodological issues, including those relating to ethics. Throughout consideration will be given to the student’s ability to develop a sustained argument that is supported by systematically collected evidence and their understanding of the contribution of education research to the creation and application of professional knowledge. Finally, they will be assessed on their ability to communicate the research findings clearly and unambiguously.

Reading Lists