CEG8423 : Transport Research Methods

Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


The aims of this module are:
1. To provide an understanding of statistical, and/or other numerical methods, appropriate to
research in a range of science and engineering disciplines
2. To enable students to develop a working knowledge of relevant software.
3. To introduce the key skills needed by researchers in order to prepare for, and successfully undertake, a significant piece of research.
4. To expose students to current transport research projects and initiatives both within and outside the University, as examples of how to manage, conduct and present the findings from research.

Outline Of Syllabus

Part A: introduction and basics of statistics; sampling and distributions; testing for differences between groups; correlation and regression; data reduction techniques; time series analysis; elementary probability theory

Part B: setting objectives and the literature review; risk management; data collection and survey design; academic writing skills; ethics

Part C: computer-based workshops on statistical methods using SPSS, Excel and R packages

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion190:309:30Revision for exam
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion12:002:00Online Exam
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture13:003:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion114:0014:00Project brief preparation and completion.
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion123:3023:30Includes background reading and reading lecture notes for a full understanding of material.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture44:0016:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical43:0012:00Computer-based exercises.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching201:0020:00Research Seminars
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Formal lectures are used to disseminate knowledge regarding statistical and other numerical techniques, and the technical knowledge required for preparing for and undertaking a significant piece of research at postgraduate level. Research seminars are designed to expose students to different aspects of current transport research as well as different approaches to research design, methodology and methods for communicating and presenting information to a critical audience. Students are encouraged to undertake practical-based computer exercises to reinforce numerical skills.

Assessment Methods

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

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
PC Examination1202A60Unseen PC based examination
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Research proposal1M40Detailed report of proposed research for the compulsory CEG8496 module (approx 2000 words inc. relevant tables, figures and charts
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

This module is assessed by written examination and coursework. This format allows a student’s knowledge and understanding of numerical and research methods to be quantified. Analytical Methods for Transport Research is a core module providing the students with the fundamentals of statistical analysis procedures essential in ensuring academic rigour is preserved in the design and execution of surveys; quality in the data collection procedures and in the statistical analysis of the data collected in the MSc dissertations. The 2 hour exam is necessary to enable the satisfactory assessment of students' knowledge of key statistical concepts and processes which are fundamental to the transport discipline.
The research project brief should contain descriptions of the key elements of a research project (including the rationale for the project; aims, objectives and methodologies; and a project management plan). This document, developed in consultation with the dissertation supervisor, will form the basis for tackling the Masters level dissertation undertaken elsewhere in the degree programme. The project brief helps the students to understand research methods and how they might be applied in their forthcoming dissertation.

Reading Lists