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MCH2069 : Research Methods

  • Offered for Year: 2023/24
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Graeme Mearns
  • Lecturer: Dr Darren Kelsey, Dr Bruce Davenport, Dr David Bates, Dr Clifton Evers
  • Other Staff: Dr Michael Waugh
  • Owning School: Arts & Cultures
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


The focus of this module is research skills.

The module provides practical introductions to a range of methods that are used in researching media, communication and culture.

The module also prepares students to make informed and critical decisions in preparation for undertaking the final year research project.

This module builds upon the core Stage 1 module Introduction to Scholarly Practice and is pivotal to connecting Stage 1 and Stage 3. It focuses on the whole process and practice of research, looking at the fundamental philosophical issues of research and inquiry and practical information on data collection techniques. The module gives information on how to put a research proposal together and enables students to undertake preliminary work for their Stage 3 research/film project.

Outline Of Syllabus

Quantitative Research
Qualitative Research
Digital Research
Ethics in Research
Designing a Research Proposal

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion175:0075:00Formative and summative assessment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture111:3016:30On-campus (can be delivered online if necessary)
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching111:3016:30On-campus (can be delivered online if necessary)
Structured Guided LearningStructured research and reading activities136:0036:00Seminar preparation and follow-up tasks & essential readings
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study156:0056:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures will be used to introduce methods and methodological issues research. They will also be used to provide students with a formal introduction of the different kinds of research practices and the relevance of that practice to their area of study.

The small-group sessions are practice-based skills sessions which provide students with the opportunity to develop skills in undertaking research methods.

Students will become knowledgeable in the basics of many methods, and are expected to utilise independent study to develop deeper understanding of methods of interest to them in preparation for their own research. Students' independent study will also involve them materialising research methodology skills and knowledge into a realisable research proposal.

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Research paper2A100Research proposal, 3000 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The assessment involves the students using the knowledge that is provided to identify a research problem and design a feasible research proposal. Specific elements from the module learning outcomes will be addressed through students responding to a research proposal template. Furthermore, the research proposal will contain some evidence of primary research, such as small-scale pilot research, designing archive research techniques, determining sampling strategies or developing search strategies.

The module may make use of formative assessment (either as a single assessment or ongoing throughout the module, in total equivalent to no more than 1,000 words). This which will review module learning outcomes and skills students need to acquire for information literacy and literature reviews in preparation for planning a research proposal.

Reading Lists