Module Information

Module Identifier
GGM2860
Module Title
MA Dissertation
Academic Year
2017/2018
Co-ordinator
Semester
Semester 3 (Dissertation)
External Examiners
  • Professor Kevin Ward (Professor - University of Manchester)
 

Course Delivery

 

Assessment

Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment A research dissertation of between 13000 and 15000 words  100%
Supplementary Assessment Resubmission of failed research dissertation (13000 and 15000 words)  100%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

1. Plan, design and execute a piece of rigorous geographical research or enquiry.
2. Undertake empirical research to high standards, including the collection of primary and/or secondary data (as appropriate).
3. Analyse data in a rigorous manner, employing appropriate techniques and analysing the findings in the context of existing knowledge and theories.
4. Produce a substantial written dissertation in an appropriate academic style.
5. Demonstrate self-motivation, planning and initiative in working on an advanced project independently.
6. Present their research findings in a professional manner.

Brief description

This module takes the form of a student-led advanced independent research project. An appropriate topic will be proposed by the student and approved by their supervisor or the MA coordinator. The project involves four stages: (i) the identification of a research topic and development of an appropriate research plan; (ii) empirical research to collect primary data and/or collate information from secondary sources, as appropriate for the research issue; (iii) the analysis of data and information, including the interpretation of findings in the context of existing knowledge and theories; (iv) the production of a 13000-15000 word dissertation.

Content

This module takes the form of a student-led independent research project. Each student will be allocated a supervisor who will provide guidance on the development and reporting of the project. Students will receive support for their independent study in a number of different contexts:

1. In semester one, students will discuss their initial ideas with potential supervisors and/or the MA coordinator and their personal tutor, identifying a suitable topic and supervisor.

2. In semester two, students will hold more formal project supervision meetings with their dissertation supervisor. Over the course of the year, students are expected to meet their supervisors and tutor approximately six times, i.e. 6 x 30 minutes.

3. Students will submit a dissertation proposal and deliver an oral presentation of their dissertation plans which are assessed as part of the module GGM3820 Research Methods in Human Geography. Feedback provided as part of this module will be fed into the supervision process for this module.

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number If appropriate to the selected research topic, students may develop numerical skills through the collection, analysis and presentation of quantitative data.
Communication Written communication skills are developed through the production of the dissertation. Oral communication skills are not developed directly in this module, although they may be developed through empirical research where verbal research methods are employed (e.g. interviews and questionnaires).
Improving own Learning and Performance The intensive period of self-directed study undertaken on this module will provide students with an excellent opportunity to improve their own independent learning skills.
Information Technology Students will be expected to employ appropriate IT resources in identifying data sources and collecting data (e.g. internet, electronic information resources), in data analysis (e.g. statistical packages), and in producing the final dissertation (e.g. word processing and/or GIS and mapping packages).
Personal Development and Career planning Students will be expected to employ appropriate IT resources in identifying data sources and collecting data (e.g. internet, electronic information resources), in data analysis (e.g. statistical packages), and in producing the final dissertation (e.g. word processing and/or GIS and mapping packages).
Problem solving Problem solving skills are developed through the identification of research questions, an appropriate methodology and research plan, and through responses to difficulties experienced during data collection.
Research skills Research skills are developed through the collection and analysis of data appropriate for investigation of the research questions.

Notes

This module is at CQFW Level 7