module specification

ED7P43 - Learning and Teaching Dissertation / Project (2017/18)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2017/18
Module title Learning and Teaching Dissertation / Project
Module level Masters (07)
Credit rating for module 60
School School of Social Professions
Total study hours 600
 
600 hours Guided independent study
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Other 100% 50 Dissertation or Project Report
Running in 2017/18
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Year North To be arranged -
Year (Spring and Summer) North To be arranged -

Module summary

The module provides participants with the opportunity for sustained scholarly work of an independent and original nature, in an area of professional interest with regards to learning and teaching in higher education.
This may take the form of a theoretical and/or empirical investigation (Dissertation) or substantive practice-based Project which is critically evaluated.

Module aims

The module provides participants with the opportunity for sustained scholarly work of an independent nature, in an area of professional interest with regards to learning and teaching in higher education.

The investigation or practice-based project is intended to be the culmination of a programme of study, and consequently, it is normally the last piece of work submitted.

Throughout the process there will be access to a designated tutor for tutorial support.

Syllabus

• Planning a dissertation/project **
o Deciding on a focus
o Deciding on an appropriate approach and method(s)

• Submitting a dissertation/project plan
o Agreeing the dissertation/project topic
o Finalising the research/project process (approach, methods, ethics aspects)
o Completing the dissertation/project plan

• Working on the dissertation/project
o Managing the dissertation/project process
o Working on the investigation
o Tutor support - regular supervision sessions
o Regulations for submission


** Options for prior methodological preparation include:

- the “Curriculum Evaluation & Development” module (ED7136), which provides an introduction to methods of  and good practice in evaluation
- the “Researching Higher Education” module (ED7138), strongly recommended for the Dissertation option
- the “Applying Learning Technologies” module (ED7139), which offers experience in action research and is particularly recommended for the Project option

Learning and teaching

The form and content of the Dissertation/Project will be negotiated between the participant and the allocated tutor, making use of a dissertation/project plan proforma.  The contract must be agreed between participant and tutor before work commences, and is subject to the approval of the Programme Leader. The plan includes setting target dates for work on the various stages of the dissertation/project, with accompanying supervision meetings. These sessions and actions agreed at them are recorded using the recommended supervision proforma or equivalent type of documentation (e.g. email).

The dissertation/project planning and supervisory processes provide ongoing opportunities for reflective learning.

When submitting the final dissertation/project report, as part of the course PDP requirement, the student is required to attach a personal (reflective) graduation statement (about 500 words) summarising outcomes in terms of experience/knowledge/skills gained from doing the MALTHE course and dissertation/project, and future aspirations. The dissertation/project report will not be accepted without the graduation statement.

Learning outcomes

Participants should be able to:
1. Critically integrate a comprehensive range of literature around the chosen subject.
2. Identify, justify and employ appropriate methods
3. Use primary data (where appropriate) for analytical as well as descriptive purposes.
4. Produce a study that demonstrates an original contribution in the chosen field of scholarship, through practice and/or theory 
5. Structure and lucidly express coherent, concise and focused argument.

Assessment strategy

The dissertation/project should be research-based and involve systematic analysis and rigorous enquiry informed by the key literature. It may be empirical or it may be theoretically based. Initially, students need to submit a dissertation/project proposal and will have tutor assistance in determining the focus and approach of their investigation/project and producing the final plan. Research experience will have been gained from the work previously undertaken in the Research Methods module.

The work may take the form of a substantive action research project, based around a new intervention or resource for learning and teaching, as an alternative to the standard dissertation. The investigation may also be presented using alternative genres (e.g. video or film documentary, educational narrative/biography, multimedia presentation), in each case accompanied by an analytical commentary which provides the theoretical and methodological frame and critical appraisal of the outcomes and implications for future practice and research.  The commentary (meta-reflective element) may be presented in an electronic or printed medium, as appropriate and relevant to the genre of the final product.

Bibliography

McMillan, K and Weyers, J (2007) How to write dissertations and project reports. Harlow : Pearson Prentice Hall

Rudestam, KE and Newton, R (2001), Surviving your Dissertation: A comprehensive guide to content and process (2nd edition). Sage.

Daryl J. Bem (2002) Writing the Empirical Journal Article, in Darley, J. M., Zanna, M. P., & Roediger III, H. L. (Eds.) The Compleat Academic: A Career Guide. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association (The author, from Cornell University, is one of the world's foremost personality psychologists.)
Available online at http://dbem.ws/WritingArticle.2.pdf

Rowley, J and Slack, F (2004) Conducting a Literature Review, Management Research News, 27 (6) pp. 31-39 – may be accessed via http://tinyurl.com/blpbxtv

London Metropolitan University Code of Good Research Practice – see website:
http://www.londonmet.ac.uk/library/z51254_3.pdf

Also see other references to research methods contained in the module outline for Researching Higher Education.