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XX50140: MRes dissertation

[Page last updated: 20 August 2021]

Academic Year: 2021/2
Owning Department/School: Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences (units for MRes programmes)
Credits: 30 [equivalent to 60 CATS credits]
Notional Study Hours: 600
Level: Masters UG & PG (FHEQ level 7)
Dissertation period
Assessment Summary: CW 100%
Assessment Detail:
  • MRes Dissertation (CW 100%)
Supplementary Assessment:
Like-for-like reassessment (where allowed by programme regulations)
Aims: To support students, within an active research community, identify a feasible research question, relate it to relevant literature and develop a cogent and coherent argument that addresses the research question.

Learning Outcomes: By the end of the unit, the students should be able:
* demonstrate a good knowledge of the literature on a chosen research question;
* show competency in the use of particular research designs and techniques within their own specialist discipline or subject area;
* present independent analysis, argument and/or application of theory in a coherent fashion;
* produce a dissertation of academic and professional merit that defines a research question/questions, identifies an appropriate methodology and engages with relevant theory and data.

Skills: Intellectual skills
* define a researchable question/focus;
* critically evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of existing literature;
* develop rigorous arguments through precise use of relevant data, concepts, models and illustrations;
* develop and present a detailed argument in an original and stimulating way.
Professional practice skills
* develop, apply, test and hone those professional practice skills taught in the MRes programme which are relevant to the dissertation;
* understand issues posed by social research in relation to ethics, confidentiality and legality;
* have a good command of language skills where appropriate;
* present the dissertation in a written form that conforms to acceptable standards of presentation and expression;
* complete the assignment within the agreed deadline.
Transferable/Key skills
* apply research management skills such as time and resource planning and monitoring, archiving of data;
* develop good writing, presentation and dissemination skills, including the use of Internet-based tools;
* competency in the presentation of research findings.

Content: Any area of research for which an adequate level of supervision is available can be offered.

Programme availability:

XX50140 is a Designated Essential Unit on the following programmes:

Department for Health Department of Psychology Department of Social & Policy Sciences

XX50140 is Compulsory on the following programmes:

Department of Education Department of Economics Department of Politics, Languages and International Studies
  • THXX-AFM50 : MRes Politics & International Studies
  • THXX-AFM51 : MRes Politics & International Studies (Leading to PhD)
Department of Psychology Department of Social & Policy Sciences


  • This unit catalogue is applicable for the 2021/22 academic year only. Students continuing their studies into 2022/23 and beyond should not assume that this unit will be available in future years in the format displayed here for 2021/22.
  • Programmes and units are subject to change in accordance with normal University procedures.
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