Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Academic Year
Semester 2 (Taught over 2 semesters)
"MUST PASS" MODULE: Students must pass this module in order to be eligible for an honours degree.
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 3 x 2 (two on semester 1 and One on semester 2) 1


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment 1 x written report (8000 words)  80%
Semester Assessment 1 x poster presentation  20%
Supplementary Assessment Students may be allowed to re-submit the research report (capped mark 40%) as decided by the examination board  If students fail the module overall, any failed component must be re-sat or determined as the Examination Board sees fit. 

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module, students should be able to.
1. Demonstrate an ability to design a small scale research study and formulate research hypotheses or questions.

2. Identify an appropriate research method including methods of analysis.

3. Critically assess the literature in the area and explore the implications of that literature for their study.

4. Demonstrate their ability to use methods of analysis appropriate for their study.

5. Critically evaluate their findings in relation to existing research.

6. Communicate their findings in a number of different media such as a written report and poster presentation.


Psychology is an empirical discipline and students are introduced to scientific methods and both quantitative and qualitative methods of investigation throughout all degree schemes. The importance of the final year project is reflected in the need for students to complete a supervised project as a core requirement for both the British Psychological Society and the QAA Benchmark for Psychology.

Brief description

Students are expected to undertake the work necessary to design, plan, and run a study based on suitable hypotheses or research questions with the help of a supervisor. The supervisor's role is to provide guidance to the student throughout the project, but students are encouraged to work as independently as possible. The amount of time spent on the project may vary according to the nature of the study, however students should expect to spend at least 400 hours working on their project.


There are limited taught components to the module focusing on the following:
• The supervisory process
• Research ethics
• Developing a presentation poster

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number Students will be expected to demonstrate their understanding of descriptive and inferential statistics in the analysis of data and presentation of relevant statistical outcomes.
Communication Students will understand the importance of information and clear communication and how to exploit these. They will know how to use the many sources of information available and how to use the most appropriate form of communication to the best advantage. They will learn to be clear and direct in their and to be direct about aims and objectives. They will learn to consider only that which is relevant to the topic and to focus on the objectives of their argument or discussion. Seminars will be run in groups where oral discussion and presentations will form the main medium of teaching. Students will be expected to submit their work in word-processed format and the presentation of work should reflect effective expression of ideas and good use of language skills in order to ensure clarity, coherence and effective communication.
Improving own Learning and Performance The module aims to promote self-management as the project is the opportunity to demonstrate the students skills in managing their time within a specified number of weeks. Students will receive support from their supervisor but will be encouraged to work autonomously although it is anticipated that students will negotiate support from their peers and may work in teams for data collection. Students will be expected to improve their own learning and performance during the research process and to exercise their own initiative, including searching for sources, compiling reference lists, and deciding (under guidance) the direction of their project. The need to give a poster presentation and to meet a project deadline will focus students' attention on the need to manage their time and opportunity resources well.
Information Technology Students will be expected to submit their work in word-processed format. Also, students will be encouraged to search for sources of information on the web, as well as seeking sources through electronic information sources (such as Web of Science, PsychInfo and PsychLit). Students will use a number of software packages during the course of the module including Excel, PowerPoint and SPSS for Windows. Students ability to use IT as a skill integral to the presentation of the project report and poster will be assessed.
Personal Development and Career planning The entire module has direct relevance to personal development and career planning as there are number of key and transferable skills integral to the process of producing a project. These include: project development; team working; time management; communication skills; numerical and literacy skills; presentation skills. Students will be encouraged to further develop their APPR profiles throughout the research process drawing on their experience of conducting the project.
Problem solving Independent project work and problem solving will be one of the central goals of the module; the identification of a research topic with associated research hypotheses/questions will require the student to develop independent research skills as well as problem solving skills. The need to research and prepare seminar presentations will also enable the student to develop independent project skills. The ability of students to solve problems will be developed and assessed by asking them to: adopt differing points of view; organize data and estimate an answer to the problem; consider case studies; reason logically; apply theoretical models; consider similar cases; look for patterns; divide issues into smaller problems. A final research report/thesis and poster will ensure that an assessment of the student's ability to work alone can be undertaken.
Research skills The submission of a project report/thesis will reflect the independent research skills of the student. The need to locate appropriate research resources and write up the results will also facilitate research skills. Research preparation for seminars will also enable the student to develop independent project skills. A final research project/thesis and poster will ensure that an assessment of the student's ability to work alone can be undertaken
Subject Specific Skills The project is the culmination of student learning about psychology developed throughout the degree scheme. Students will be expected to demonstrate their understanding of key aspects and concepts of psychology. The subject specific skills will be developed throughout the module include: • Assessment of scientific methods in psychology. • Differentiation between quantitative and qualitative methods of inquiry and their appropriate use. • Demonstration of a familiarity with the techniques required for literature searches. • Appreciation of the nature of ethical research in the social sciences. • Conceptual understanding of the applied aspects of psychology.
Team work Seminars will consist in part of small-group discussion where students will be obliged to discuss as a group the core issues related to seminar topics. Such class room debates and discussions are a vital component of the module. It is highly likely that students may work together in teams to collect and analyse data working to different hypotheses.


This module is at CQFW Level 6