HSS8001 : Thinking about Research

Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


To investigate the nature of developing a research process, both in academic and non-academic research environments, including:
• Enabling students to formulate problems and devise research questions.
• Enabling students to identify the significance of asking the right questions.
• Enabling students to assess the significance of how questions are theorised.
• Showing students how research is related to policy and practice.

Outline Of Syllabus

The module will involve a combination of lectures and workshops with group exercises in order to explore the contexts within which research takes place, and practice skills in the development of research proposals. Topics include:
• Formulation; the problem and question.
• Theory-driven and 'real world' research.
• Research funders' exercise.
• Fieldwork; Home and abroad.
• Research project development exercise in small groups.
• Presentation of research project proposal.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture41:004:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical24:309:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching11:001:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study186:0086:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures will introduce students to key concepts and issues in the research process and illustrate with case study examples and materials based on staff research experience, and through this address the knowledge outcomes

Workshops will involve students working in groups to explore and address:

1. The specification of a research problem
2. The development appropriate methodology
3. The negotiation and planning of a research process by a multi-disciplinary research team

Seminars/workshops will include group presentations. They will address the main skills outcomes

Assessment Methods

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

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Oral Presentation151A30Group presentation scheduled by School
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay1M701,250 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Assessed essay will test the main knowledge and skills outcomes relating to the nature of research, the formulation of a research problem and strategy and the issues arising within the research process, developed within the framework of a case study research proposal

Assessed group report will provide for assessment of skills outcomes and keys skills concerned with team working, and skill outcomes relating to linking research problems and methodologies

Reading Lists