module specification

ED7P39 - Education Dissertation (2017/18)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2017/18
Module title Education Dissertation
Module level Masters (07)
Credit rating for module 60
School School of Social Professions
Total study hours 600
 
590 hours Guided independent study
10 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Dissertation 100%   Dissertation
Running in 2017/18
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Spring semester North Not applicable Not applicable
Autumn semester North Not applicable Not applicable
Summer studies North Not applicable Afternoon and evening

Module summary

This module represents the culmination of students’ work for the award of MA Education.   It requires students to undertake an empirical research enquiry using qualitative methods.  The module is offered in Autumn, Spring and Summer periods.  The summer period is normally reserved for full-time students who have started their course in September.  The module is dependent upon outcomes from the Research Methods in Education module because this is assessed by the preparation of a research proposal.  Students will normally take the Research Methods in Education module at least one semester before commencing the one in which they are scheduled to submit their dissertation.  This allows students to digest feedback from the assessment of their proposal, satisfy the course leader that a failure will be redeemed on resubmission and begin to plan their work for the dissertation with their allocated supervisor.

Module aims

This module aims to support students carrying out and writing up a small-scale independent investigation focused on an aspect of education of their choice. Through the course of their work for the dissertation students should:
· develop a critical understanding of research methodology and methods in education
· deploy and critically evaluate theoretical perspectives in relation to their chosen topic
· gain skills in identifying and selecting appropriate source material including data from primary sources
· evaluate the strengths and limitations of research carried out by themselves and by other people
· produce an extended piece of writing with a clear structure and conceptual organisation which shows stylistic competence, and uses a conventional system of full and accurate referencing
· develop an in-depth understanding of their chosen aspect of education such that they can make an original contribution to existing knowledge in that area.

Syllabus

Students doing the dissertation will already have completed the module Research Methods in Education, at the end of which they will have produced a research proposal setting out what they intend to do for their dissertation.
On the basis of this proposal they will be allocated a supervisor with appropriate research or subject expertise who will support them through individual tutorials throughout the process of carrying out the research and writing the dissertations, recommending appropriate reading and offering advice and feedback on work in progress.
It is the student’s responsibility to maintain contact with their tutor.

Learning and teaching

Teaching is by individual tutorial and this will serve to guide the large amount of time that needs to be devoted to self-guided study in order to produce the dissertation.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the module students will be able to

• plan and carry out and evaluate a small-scale piece of educational research in which they:
• demonstrate a critical understanding of research methodology and methods in education
• effectively deploy and critically evaluate theoretical perspectives
• identify and select appropriate source material including data from primary sources
• evaluate the strengths and limitations of research carried out by themselves and by other people
• structure and maintain an extended piece of writing which shows stylistic competence, and uses a conventional system of full and accurate referencing.
• contribute with originality to existing knowledge
• demonstrate independent achievement and creative ability.

Assessment strategy

The module is assessed by submission of a substantial thesis of 15000 words that addresses a research question.  The thesis seeks to do at least two things; first, it represents a substantial piece of research into an area of educational interest; second, it demonstrates student’s competence to undertake and write up that substantial piece of research for an academic audience.

Bibliography

Angrosino, M. (2007) Doing Ethnographic Observational Research, London: Sage.
Cohen, L., Manion, L. and Morrison, K. (eds.) (2011) Research Methods in Education, 7th edition, London: Routledge.
Denzin, N. K. and Lincoln, Y. S. (eds.) (2011) The Sage Handbook of Qualitative Research, 4th edition, London: Sage.
Dressman, M. (2008) Using Social Theory in Educational Research: A practical guide, London: Routledge.
Kvale, S. (2009) InterViews: Learning the Craft of Qualitative Research Interviewing, 2nd edition, London: Sage.
Marshall, C. and Rossman, G. B. (2011) Designing Qualitative Research, 5th edition, London: Sage.
Mukherji, P. and  Albon, D. (2010) Research Methods in Early Childhood:  An Introductory Guide, London: Sage.
Ritchie, J. and Lewis, J. (eds.) (2003) Qualitative Research Practice: A Guide for Social Science Students and Researchers, London: Sage.
Scott, D. Usher, R. (2011) Researching Education: Data, Methods and Theory in Educational Enquiry, 2nd edition, London: Continuum.
Scott, D. and Morrison, M. (2006) Key Ideas in Educational Research, London: Continuum.
Sharp, J. (2009) Success with Your Education Research Project, Exeter: Learning Matters.
Silverman, D. (2013) Doing Qualitative Research, 4th edition, London: Sage.

Journals

British Educational Research Journal
Educational Action Research
Educational Research Quarterly
Educational Research Review
Issues in Educational Research
Journal of Educational Research


Wellington J (2000) Educational Research: Contemporary issues and practical approaches London: Continuum