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SES8098 : Exercise Physiology Dissertation

  • Offered for Year: 2024/25
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Owen Jeffries
  • Owning School: Biomedical, Nutritional and Sports Scien
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus

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

Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
Semester 3 Credit Value: 70
ECTS Credits: 45.0
European Credit Transfer System


This module will provide experience of primary research in a current topic in sport and exercise science. The project will facilitate students in their development of key research skills to advance scientific understanding, under the direction of a supervisor.

The aims of the dissertation module are to:

1.       To enable students to pursue a novel, investigative study in an area of exercise physiology in which the
student is particularly interested and motivated.
2.       To provide training in research management and methods in an appropriate dissertation topic area and
within a first-class exercise sciences environment. Students will develop a range of professional and
key skills that will allow them to undertake teaching and or research at an advanced level.
3.       To empower students to make informed choices about their career development in exercise physiology or
related fields.

Outline Of Syllabus

There is no formal syllabus. Research projects are individually tailored by each supervisor/research group.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion1250:00250:00Preparation work prior to and during the research on the dissertation topic
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion130:0030:00Oral presentation on dissertation outcome
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture41:004:00PIP - Module introduction, ethics and research process, thesis and presentation guidance, Q&A.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical54:0020:00PIP - Protocol practice
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical51:005:00PIP: Lab tasks: observation & competence check on all study equipment with technical team/supervisor
Guided Independent StudyProject work1550:00550:00Data collection, data analysis and write-up
Guided Independent StudyReflective learning activity126:0026:00Reflective learning
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDissertation/project related supervision151:0015:00PIP - Supervisor meetings
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

This module has been conceived to educate students in the practice of hypothesis-led research in Exercise Physiology. Semester 1 will focus on the student’s understanding of research ethics and composing an original research study rationale and experimental protocol within their identified area that they will subsequently explore in their research project. Research area’s will be allocated based on student’s preference and availability. This coursework assessment will be an independent process (without input from supervisor) which is crucial for the student’s understanding of the wider research process. In semester 2 students will be introduced to their supervisor and begin pilot testing. Semester 3 will focus largely on data collection and writing up their findings.

A key element of the module is that students are involved actively in the selection of their dissertation topic with appropriate guidance and hence will be asked to identify areas of interest in the first week of study to facilitate alignment with an appropriate supervisor. Research areas will be allocated early in semester 1 but allocation of research supervisors will not occur until semester 2. In semester 2, once project titles have been allocated, students will be encouraged to take responsibility for the successful implementation and outcome of their studies under the guidance of an academic supervisor through early preparation and research. Students will benefit from individual guidance from their academic supervisor. Successful completion of their dissertation and oral and written presentation of their research findings within clearly defined deadlines will educate and empower students and give them confidence in their own abilities to research and deliver.

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Report1M201500 word research protocol and ethics document
Oral Examination3M1510 minute presentation with 10 minute interview / viva - PIP
Dissertation3M605000 word final thesis in a publication format.
Prof skill assessmnt3M5Mark for professional behaviour, independence and initiative will be assessed by the dissertation supervisor.
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The research proposal and ethics document will ensure that students have a wider understanding of the ethical process and gives them the opportunity to have conducted a full risk assessment within their area of research interest. As part of the ethical document submission, students will have to conceive a novel research study, develop and outline a clear rationale and descript an appropriate research methodology and experimental protocol. This assessment has been developed to ensure that students have researched their chosen area of study thoroughly through use of appropriate databases and have acquainted themselves with current knowledge and opinion as well as making assessments of risks and appropriate strategies to mitigate such risk in human research. Preparation of this ethical document will be entirely independent with generic feedback from the module leader which will enable students to develop their own research idea and make critical assessments of ethical considerations with implementing such a project.

The preparation of a written 5000-word dissertation will provide a formative-assessment, learning-opportunity for students on how to present, illustrate, describe, discuss and reference their findings in an appropriate scientific manner. They will address the extent to which they have addressed their initial hypothesis and have achieved the aims identified in protocol report. Students will be encouraged to consider the impact of their findings in the context of overall knowledge. The preparation of the final dissertation will encourage the ability to present information in a succinct and informative fashion. Additionally, students will learn the importance of professional interactions with their supervisor. Supervisors will give formative feedback on one occasion only for the following sections of the dissertation: the introduction, methods and results. Student’s will therefore have the opportunity to be completely independent in their critical analysis and interpretation of their data in the dissertation discussion section.

The oral presentation will encourage students to discuss the extent to which the hypothesis on which their dissertation topic is based has been addressed and to explain how their aims have been met and to identify future aims. The nature of the presentation will teach students the ability to explain the significance of their findings orally.

The supervisor assessment of the student will evaluate the student’s interpersonal skills, ability to work within a team, organisation, initiative, drive and competency in analysis and software usage.

All methods of assessment will develop the importance of achieving deadlines.

Reading Lists