MD4058 Research and study skills
This assessment is based on the seven lectures and seminars that are timetabled for this Semester. Full details are on Blackboard.
You are required to use the remainder of the 100 hours self-directed study time to read relevant text books and journal articles as per the reading list in the MIP and using Library resources.
The sessions will give students a conceptual grounding in research methodologies as well as practical guidance for the design of a viable research project. Emphasis will be placed on the systematic nature of the research process so that students can see the links between philosophy, methodology, methods and data analysis.
The research proposal is designed to assess the students’ ability to both conduct a search and review of existing literature and design an appropriate research strategy. This research proposal informs the subsequent dissertation module which can be taken in year 2 of the course.
Assessment Release date:
Assessment Deadline Date and time: December 4th, 5pm
Please note that this is the latest time you can submit.
Your feedback and mark for this assessment will be provided on blackboard, three weeks after the deadline date.
The University requires students to adhere to submission deadlines for any form of assessment in accordance with the precepts contained in The Student Charter.
Your report should:
·Demonstrate your understanding of the research process and design.
·Present your research aim (/research question) and objectives.
·Explain how your research is derived from and interrelated to the existing literature.
·Make clear philosophical and methodological underpinnings of the research.
·Provide an outline of research design and data collection methods used.
·Demonstrate independent research that is applied effectively and appropriately using the Harvard Referencing System.
To pass you must achieve a grade of 50% or more.
You should submit your report online in the form of an MSWord document, using Mozilla Firefox browser, before the above deadline.
The report should be approximately 2000 words. Reports between 1800 and 2200 words are acceptable, excess words will not be marked.
Format should be: standard margins; size 12 Ariel font in black; double line spaced; no decorative formatting should be used; page number should be included.
Copy the Cover Page Template (see Blackboard) onto the first page of your report.
Create a Contents List for the report on the second page.
Include all necessary in-text citations and a list of References at the end of the report, using Harvard.
Write an academic report which addresses the following:
1.Title of the research proposal
2.An introduction to the report (100 words)
The Introduction should tell the reader what the report is about. It sets the project in its wider context, outlines the structure and signposts the reader to the key points.
3.Research justification/context (450 words)
a.Background to the research (context of the research). This is the section, in which you should justify why the topic you have chosen is of relevance and importance. You might provide some theoretical context or/and offer some relevant facts and figures regarding a particular industry – if possible, these should highlight any gaps in the existing body of knowledge. There should not be a significant overlap with the literature review, but appropriate references should be made. This part of your report should contextualise the research and lead the reader logically to the research aim and objectives.
b.Research aim and objectives:
Begin this section by clearly stating the aim of your proposed research in one or two sentences (verbs often used are: to investigate; to explore; to compare). Then provide a breakdown of the specific objectives you will undertake in your research in order to meet the aim (there should not be more than four objectives). Be as precise as possible. The objectives should link directly to the research aim and be numbered (i.e. from 1 to 4).
Please note that if it is more appropriate to use an overarching research question, followed by a subset of research questions (no more than four), you can do so. It is your personal choice.
4.Literature Review (600)
You must identify the main theoretical underpinnings of your work and the key authors in your field of research. You should make references to the key authors and themes from the body of academic literature that is relevant to your researched topic area. It is important to utilise a range of academic sources (such as, journal articles, academic textbooks) and should be appropriately referenced.
5.Methodology: a justification of the research approach and methods for data collection, including (700)
a.Your philosophical position and methodological approach to the study
b.Research methods (how are you going to collect your data? Why is this the most appropriate form of data collection for your research?)
c.Research design, sample and sampling (i.e. timeline, where and with whom?)
d.How do you propose to analyse your data
e.Limitations of the study – any problems you might anticipate and how you could overcome them.
f.Ethical considerations relating to this study.