60 credits at level HE7
The MSc dissertation is a student-centred activity where the student is expected to design and conduct an investigation into a selected topic area and critically appraise the outcomes. In doing this, the student builds on previous experience of project work and synthesises knowledge and practices drawn from a variety of specialist modules, as well as evidencing their capacity for lifelong learning and professional development through their approach to and handling of the dissertation topic.
The specific aims of the dissertation module are:
1. To develop, experience and critically apply a wide range of generic and subject specific skills and activities while undertaking a piece of small scale research.
2. To both broaden and deepen current subject expertise and knowledge in a chosen topic area.
3. To communicate and justify the design, implementation and outcomes of the research in relation to the stated aims of the Dissertation.
4. To appraise own effectiveness of performance, attitude and approach.
Dependent on the Dissertation topic.
The underpinning knowledge associated with the Dissertation has two sources. The Research Methods Module which is a prerequisite to the Dissertation and prepares students with a wide range of generic and subject specific research skills and the taught elements of the programme which provides further subject specific material. The Dissertation activity is undertaken under the supervision of a member of academic staff. The supervision is critical in bringing together the other two preparatory elements in a practical situation and promotes learning through critical analysis, argument, justification and action research.
The aims of the Dissertation are clearly articulated and students are required to plan their work in order to meet agreed milestones. All students experience personal supervision which is recorded and monitored in a project log.
To provide PDP opportunities students are requested to maintain a personal project log and each student will be asked to respond in their log to the following questions, it is also expected that some of these questions would be raised during the final project seminar presentation:
1) How well did you perform your research tasks?
2) Identify one weakness that the project displayed and discuss how you went about overcoming it.
3) How effective were your time management skills and could they be improved?
4) How has the project improved your chances of obtaining employment or if already employed how has it improved the way in which you conduct your work duties?
5) Record any significant further work that could follow on from the conclusion of your project.
Personal Supervision : 15 hours
Access to practical facilities : 90 hours (where appropriate)
Self-managed learning : minimum of 495 hours
when you have successfully completed this module you will:
to demonstrate that you have achieved the learning outcome you will:
|1.||Demonstrate familiarity with current literature in the topic area chosen and a mature grasp of relevant ideas and concepts distilled from previous research and publications||Conduct an extensive literature survey, relating your findings to experience and drawing out practical implications in the context of the Dissertation and current commercial or industrial practice.|
|2.||Formulate an appropriate experimental methodology to achieve the aims of a project.||Design and execute an appropriate investigation, generating original data which can be analysed and placed in a relevant theoretical framework|
|3.||Demonstrate a critical and analytical approach to theories and evidence.||Reflect on the relationships between theory and practice and draw conclusions based on the analysis of evidence or data.|
|4.||Communicate and articulate arguments to a high standard via a written report and oral presentation||
- Produce a dissertation report to an appropriate standard for postgraduate study.
- Plan and deliver a well-structured and informative seminar presentation
- Demonstrate clarity and coherence of arguments lucidly expressed in both written and oral presentations
|5.||Demonstrate the ability to commit to a long-term project and employ effective time management skills and techniques in setting and accomplishing objectives.||
- plan and execute a project within a given time restraint.
- set realistic and feasible objectives.
- identify and prioritise tasks.
- generate and adhere to a time plan e.g. Gantt chart.
Your achievement of the learning outcomes for this module will be tested as follows:
|Description||15000 word Dissertation||30 minute seminar presentation|
Before taking this module you must have successfully completed the following:
No restrictions apply.
Adamson, A., (1990). A Studentís Guide for Assignments, Projects and Research, Arthur Adamson Publications, Louth, UK
Howard, K. and Sharp, J.A., (1983). The Management of a Student Research Project, Gower, Aldershot, UK
Orna, E., with Stevens, G., (1995). Managing Information for Research,Open University Press
Rogerson, S.,(1989). Project Skills Handbook, Chartwell-Bratt
White, B., (1991). Studying for Science, E.F. Spon, London
Turabian, K. L.,(1987). A manual for Writers of Term Papers, Theses, and Dissertations, Fifth Edition, The University of Chicago Press.
Clegg, F., (1982). Simple Statistics, Cambridge University Press.
Pentz, M. and M. Shott, (1988). Handling Experimental Data, Open University Press.
Bona, M., (1993). Statistical Methods for the Textile Industry, Chapter 20 An introduction to the Design of Experiments, Texilia, Biella, Italy.
Gowers, Sir Ernest, (1987) Revised by S. Greenbaum and J. Whitcut), Plain Words, Third Edition, Penguin Books.
Greenfield, T. (Ed), (2002). Research Methods for post-graduates, HodderArnold
Luck, M., (1999). Your Student Research Project, Gower
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