module specification

PY7187 - Further Research Methods (2017/18)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2017/18
Module title Further Research Methods
Module level Masters (07)
Credit rating for module 10
School School of Social Sciences
Total study hours 100
76 hours Guided independent study
24 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 100%   Portfolio of data analysis exercises
Running in 2017/18
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Spring semester North Monday Afternoon

Module summary

The module is designed to extend students’ understanding and competence in the application of research methods to a level appropriate for planning and carrying out a substantial piece of empirical research at Master’s level.

Prior learning requirements

PY7185 Research Methods and Biological Psychology

Module aims

The module aims to build on the knowledge, understanding and skills students have gained by taking PY7185 to cover more complex research designs and data structures.


Multiple linear regression.  Mediation and moderation analysis. Factor analysis.  Path analysis. Current developments in the analysis of quantitative data.

Advanced qualitative analysis using alternative epistemological approaches to those covered in PY7185 (e.g., discourse analysis, IPA, grounded theory); application of qualitative methodologies in psychological research; means of ensuring quality in qualitative research.

Learning and teaching

There will be a series of formal teaching sessions. The sessions will consist of a combination of lecture followed by practical workshop, with the balance in any one week being determined by the nature of the topics being covered.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will be able to
1. make expert  use of computer-based statistical packages for performing advance methods of data analysis, e.g. SPSS, AMOS, LISREL,
2. employ a range of advanced methods for collecting and interpreting qualitative data;
3. extend their knowledge of quantitative and qualitative methods by working independently from advanced texts covering research methods and research publications employing such methods;
4. integrate their knowledge and understanding of research methods with their knowledge and understanding in core areas of psychology, e.g. cognitive, developmental, social psychology to develop a research plan for conducting a substantial piece of empirical work within given resources and time constraints.

Assessment strategy

The module will be assessed by a portfolio of exercises presented in the workshops, where students will complete the tasks set in their own time.


American Psychological Association (2010). Concise Rules of APA Style. (6ed|) Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
Breakwell, G. M., Hammond, S., Fife-Schaw, C. and Smith J. A.  (eds). (2006). Research methods in psychology. (3rd ed) London: Sage
Cohen, J., Cohen, P., West S. G. and Aiken, L. S. (2002) Applied Multiple Regression/Correlation Analysis for the Behavioral Sciences. (3rd ed.) Routledge Academic
Field, A. (2013). Discovering Statistics Using SPSS (4th ed). London: Sage.
Howell, D.C. (2013). Statistical Methods for Psychology (8th ed). Belmont, CA: Duxbury Press.
Smith, J. A. (2006). Qualitative Psychology. A Practical Guide to Research Methods. London: Sage.
Tabachnick, B. and Fidell, L. (2012).  Using Multivariate Statistics (6th edition). Pearson.
Willig, C.& Stainton-Rogers, W. (eds) (2013). The SAGE Handbook of Qualitative Research in Psychology. Sage.