Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Research Methods
Academic Year
Semester 2
Mutually Exclusive
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 30 x 1 Hour Lectures


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Research Plan  25%
Semester Assessment Statistics assignment  25%
Semester Exam 2 Hours   Online Exam  50%
Supplementary Exam 2 Hours   Online Exam.  Student to complete assessment(s) equivalent to that (those) failed.  50%
Supplementary Assessment Assessment (2000 words).  Student to complete assessment(s) equivalent to that (those) failed.  50%

Learning Outcomes

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

1. Demonstrate an understanding of the importance of research in a wide range of careers.

2. Search and review the scientific literature to identify valid research questions.

3. Identify appropriate methods of analysis for different types of research.

4. Design statistically valid experiments.

5. Identify and mitigate against confounding factors in research design.

6. Demonstrate an understanding of the ethical issues involved in research.

7. Analyze data using a range of quantitative and qualitative techniques.

8. Interpret the results of data analyses and apply statistical knowledge in the evaluation of research investigations.

Brief description

The course will cover the principles and practice of a range of basic quantitative and qualitative procedures of data analysis, coupled with an understanding of good research design and planning. Delivery will rely heavily on student-centered e-learning, supported by computer workshops. Through e-learning, students will receive training in the use of statistical software packages, literature searching and research design. Use of subject-specific tutorial videos will ensure that students receive explanatory examples directly relevant to their particular subject area.


This module provides the tools necessary for interpreting and using research in graduate careers. Part 1 will investigate the links between research in a wide range of graduate careers. Talks by the Careers Advisory Service, employers and researchers will be arranged. Whilst Part 2 will cover experimental design, quantitative and qualitative statistical methods for analyzing data integrated with the evaluation of existing research published in a range of different sources. Field visits to different sites in IBERS, AU and elsewhere will be organized, where research can be seen in practice, relevant to the students’ degree.

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number Most aspects of the module will require manipulation of data and application of statistics. Feedback on this will be given in on-line exercises.
Communication Students will be expected to be able to express themselves appropriately in all assessments. Feedback will be given in the assignments.
Improving own Learning and Performance Outside the formal contact hours, students will be expected to research materials, manage time and meet deadlines for the assignment and exam.
Information Technology Students will be required to source information from a variety of scientific publication databases. The use of various software packages will be required for the correct presentation of the assignments.
Personal Development and Career planning Students will gain confidence in their ability to evaluate and use research findings in their chosen career.
Problem solving Students will need to determine the most appropriate research design and methods of analysis to use with different types of data. Feedback will be given in the assignments.
Research skills Students will be required to source and summarize a substantial amount of information without staff direction in order to complete the assessments. Feedback will be given in the assignments.
Subject Specific Skills By allowing students to focus on an area of research of interest to them this module will help students develop subject specific skills and knowledge.
Team work Not a significant component of this module.


This module is at CQFW Level 5