Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Academic Year
Semester 1
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Contact Hours 25 Hours. 10 x 2.5 hours sessions


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment 3,000 words  students to design and present their own research proposal within an appropriate methodological and epistemological context  100%

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module, students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate a comprehension of the basic principles of research design and strategy
  • Show an ability to formulate researchable questions
  • Explain why their research questions are significant and what kinds of questions theirs epistemologically are
  • Demonstrate an appreciation of alternative approaches to research
  • Demonstrate an understanding of key issues in the philosophy of social science/history and their relevance to their research fields/topics

Brief description

This module is designed to be an integral component of the new RT masters courses which the University has introduced. Through this module Masters and PhD students will gain a broad knowledge of a range of research skills which they can apply in a variety of research contexts.


This module aims to give research students a knowledge of the basic principles of research design and strategy. It will enable them to demonstrate their capacity to: formulate their research question, analyse them and where appropriate, formulate testable hypothesis; explain why their research questions are significant, what kinds of question theirs epistemologically are and why they are adopting their chosen modes/methods of enquiry; and assess the implications of the outcomes of their research. To this end, this module provides students with a sytematically guided opportunity to familiarise themselves with certain key issues in the philosophy of social science and of history, such as: causation and multi-causality; modes of explanation and understanding; the nature of historical knowledge; sampling, sampling error and generalizability; society/history as social/historical constructs; critical functions of social science.


This module covers the following topics:
  • Research design and strategy
  • Research questions and dissertation structures
  • Causation and other related issues
  • Explaining a sequence
  • Narrative and the world
  • Critical perspectives
  • Research proposals workshop


This module is at CQFW Level 7