NBS8062 : Research Methods (ICE/ABC/E-Business)

Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 10.0


This module is designed to provide students with the necessary training to undertake advanced level research in Business and Management. The module has two aspects. First, it focuses on the nature of research in the area, and the social sciences (philosophy of science) in general, examining the study skills necessary to manage and undertake a research project; and secondly, it provides students with opportunities to be familiar with the important empirical and theoretical research in Business and Management. Such skills are intended to provide a central foundation for undertaking a dissertation at an advanced level.

Outline Of Syllabus

This module will enable you to develop an understanding of the nature and scope of advanced research in Business and Management. It focuses on research leading to the production of your Master's dissertation project and covers key skills areas, including, research proposals, the philosophy of science underpinning research design and strategy-making, data collection and research methods, recording and interpretation of results and writing up. It is practical and interactive in focus, employing research case-studies and exploring the academic role of the research project in a student's career.

Lecture topics include:

An introduction to business management research
Developing a Literature Review and Critical Appraisal
Developing a Topic for Research: Using and Applying Theory
Research Design and Ethics, and Risk Management
Quantitative methods - Data Collection: Sampling Techniques and Survey Design
Qualitative methods - Data Collection: Interviews, observation, focus groups and ethnography
Writing a Research Proposal (including Ethics)
Qualitative Data - Analysis and Interpretation (Nvivo)
Quantitative Data Analysis and Interpretation (SPSS)

Seminar Sessions

Developing Initial Research Proposals, Full Research Proposal (including Ethics Forms), Advanced Qualitative and Quantitative Methods/Skills (Computer Cluster sessions - SPSS and NVivo), writing your dissertation.

Skills sessions include Library Resources and skills sessions (Practical skills sessions in NUBS computer clusters) 2 hours including introduction to SPSS and NVivo.

Individual sessions with nominated dissertation supervisors to support assignments.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion180:0080:00Assignment 2: Full Dissertation Proposal (3500 words)
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion148:0048:00Assignment 1: Initial Proposal
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture112:0022:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical22:004:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading202:0040:00Methods texts
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical61:006:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures and guided reading of texts provide the basic technical structure of the materials to be covered which are then supported by skills development in the practical seminars then applied in the assessments.

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Research proposal1M20Assignment 1: Initial Research Proposal (1500 words)
Research proposal2M80Assignment 2: Full Dissertation Proposal (3000 words)
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Research proposal1MN/A
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Both these assignments will assess whether the students can apply the theories and techniques developed in lectures and practical seminars to their own plans and research proposals.

Reading Lists