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SML4099 : Dissertation/T&I Project

  • Offered for Year: 2024/25
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Damien Hall
  • Co-Module Leader: Dr Pauline Henry-Tierney
  • Owning School: Modern Languages
  • 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
ECTS Credits: 10.0
European Credit Transfer System


In consonance with the overall aims of the degrees offered in the SML, this module aims:

- To build on skills gained at Stages 1, 2 and 3.
- To provide an opportunity for students to research a subject in depth and write a dissertation/T&I project at Final Year level.
- To prepare students for postgraduate study in the chosen area.

This module aims to allow students to undertake independent research into a specialised area with individual supervision. Students may choose an appropriate topic with guidance from the module leader or supervisor. The area studied should normally fit in with the areas of expertise amongst SML staff, including European, Latin American and Chinese and Japanese film, literature, history, translation or interpretation studies and linguistics. Exceptionally in some years, if the topic dictates it, members of academic staff outside SML can supervise dissertations. The chosen topic should be within a broad area which the student has studied previously.

There will be at six workshops, led by the module leader, staff from the Library or staff from the Academic Skills Team; in these workshops, students will learn and develop research skills and present their own research. The content of workshops will depend on the availability of Library and Academic Skills Team staff, which is typically known in the Summer before a given academic year. There will be dedicated workshops for students undertaking T&I projects.

Each student will receive up to a maximum of six hours of individual supervision.

This module is particularly appropriate for students considering postgraduate study.

Outline Of Syllabus

This module enables students to undertake independent study with guidance from the module leader and supervisor via workshops and tutorials. A high proportion of time is devoted to independent study.

In Semester 2 of Stage 2 there will be a meeting available to all of Stage 2 and Stage 3, to explain the dissertation / T&I Project. They will also be encouraged at this stage to contact the module leader and/or a potential supervisor while on their Year Abroad (Stage 3), or during the Summer before Stage 4.

Before the end of Week 1 of Stage 4, students must produce a 250-500 word proposal, including names of potential supervisors. In addition to the proposal, T&I project students must also provide suggestions of the source materials they intend to work on. If there is no potential supervisor for the student’s topic, the student will be asked to choose another module or change the topic. Students who have not pre-registered for this module during the previous academic session may do so exceptionally during registration of Stage 4 provided they submit the approved 250-500 word proposal and their topic is accepted by a potential supervisor.

During Stage 4 students will be provided with 6 workshops, organised by the module leader and members of staff with expertise in T&I projects. There will be a minimum of 4 and a maximum of 6 hours of individual tutorials with the supervisor. During the tutorials, students will receive guidance on focusing their topic and identifying and formulating precise research questions, planning and timetabling their work, as well as detailed feedback on the draft work they produce. A rough schedule of milestones will be agreed with their supervisor at the beginning of module (e.g. detailed plan; annotated bibliography; draft chapters etc…). Students will be required to produce at least one piece of written work by the end of the first assessment week of semester one, which (according to area of study) might for example take the form of a detailed plan with an annotated bibliography, as agreed by staff and student. For students undertaking a T&I project, the source materials must also be confirmed at this point and the research question established. Students will be required to keep a log of all meetings with their supervisors, including a summary of agreed decisions.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching41:004:00Tutorials; up to 6, if needed
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching61:006:00Workshops, usually PiP, though some non-SML providers (e.g. the Library; the Academic Skills Team) may choose to provide online content instead, if that is more appropriate for the nature of the content or the learning outcomes.
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study1190:00190:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Tutorials allow student and supervisor to
• ascertain progress
• identify problems
• plan study tactics
• develop an overall strategy for completion

The supervisor offers staged support through guided and progressively adjusted autonomous learning
Workshops will provide training in research methods and allow students to present aspects of their own work in progress.

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Dissertation2M806,000 words max. (not 6,000±10%); *exceptions possible - see below
Written exercise1M20Dissertation Students: Dissertation plan of 800 words ±10%. T&I Project Students: 800 words ± 10% and source text material as an appendix.
Formative Assessments

Formative Assessment is an assessment which develops your skills in being assessed, allows for you to receive feedback, and prepares you for being assessed. However, it does not count to your final mark.

Description Semester When Set Comment
Written exercise1MDissertation/T&I project proposal: 250-500 words, to be accepted by supervisor before the end of the first week of teaching of Stage 4
Assessment Rationale And Relationship


6,000 words max. (not 6,000±10%)*
*Exceptions possible where conventions require (e.g. descriptions of historical primary sources). Any exceptions must be agreed with supervisor and module leader.

Translation project
1-3000 words (depending upon genre of text), and 4,000 words maximum translation commentary.
Interpreting project
10 mins recording of unrehearsed, live, consecutive/ liaison interpreting of a live source speaker(s) (specifics to be agreed with supervisor and T&I Projects coordinator), and 4,000 words maximum interpreting commentary.
Subtitling project
10 mins of subtitled video material and 4,000 words maximum subtitling commentary.

The structure of the dissertation/T&I Project and the duration of the period of preparation and drafting are the most appropriate means of developing the learning (and skills) outcomes.

Reading Lists