module specification

PY7P91 - Dissertation (2024/25)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2024/25
Module title Dissertation
Module level Masters (07)
Credit rating for module 60
School School of Social Sciences and Professions
Total study hours 600
575 hours Guided independent study
25 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 0%   Project Proposal & Ethics Approval Application
Coursework 80%   Dissertation (10,000-12,000 words)
Coursework 20%   Poster Presentation (20 mins)
Running in 2024/25

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
No instances running in the year

Module summary

This module supports the process of planning, carrying out, and writing up an independent empirical research project in any area of psychology.

Prior learning requirements

PY7185 Research Methods and Biological Psychology
PY7187 Further Research Methods

Module aims

The aims of this module are:
1. To enable students to apply the research knowledge and skills developed in the research methods modules in carrying out an individual research project under supervision.
2. To provide an opportunity for students to present, and defend, their individual research project within an academic environment.


This module consists of supervision of empirical research projects and there is no taught syllabus. However, support workshops will be provided that will cover:

1. Requirements, time-scale and planning,

2.Ethics and ethical applications.

Learning and teaching

Supervision meetings and independent learning will be the main focus of this module.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:

1. Plan and execute, using independent judgement, a piece of original empirical research relevant
to any area of psychology
2. Demonstrate innovation and originality of thought with respect to empirical research
3. Select, carry out and interpret research findings using either quantitative or qualitative analysis techniques to an advanced level of capability
4. Critically interpret and place their own research within a relevant context of psychological research
5. Write a project dissertation in a research paper format suitable for publication as a journal article
6. Be able to argue their research ideas and empirical findings through presentation of a research poster and question-and-answer session
7. Demonstrate critical understanding of the role of empirical research in the academic and professional development of psychology, including epistemology and ethics of research


British Psychological Society (2009). Code of Ethics and Conduct Leicester: BPS.
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DeVellis, R.F (1991) Scale Development: Theory and Applications. Newbury Park CA: Sage.
Game, A. and West, M.A (2002) Principles of publishing, The Psychologist 15, 126-9.
Kline, P (2000) The Handbook of Psychological Testing (2nd edition). London: Routledge.
Rosenthal, R (1991) Meta-analytic Procedures for Social Scientists (revised). Newbury Park, CA: Sage Publications.
Pearson.Willig, C. (2008). Introducing Qualitative Research in Psychology: Adventures in theory and method. (2nd edition). Maidenhead: Open University Press.
Shadish, W.R.; Cook, T.D. and Campbell, D.T. (2002) Experimental and Quasi-experimental Designs for Generalized Causal Inference. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin.
Silverman D. (2001) Interpreting Qualitative Data: Methods for Analysing Talk, Text and Interaction (2nd edition). London: Sage.
Stangor, C. (2011). Research methods for the behavioral sciences (4th edition). Mountain View, CA: Cengage.
Sternberg, R.J. (Ed) (2000) Guide to Publishing in Psychology Journals. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Tabachnick, B. and Fidell, L. (2006). Using Multivariate Statistics (5th edition). Pearson.
Wright, D.B. and Williams, S. (2004) How to produce a bad results section. The Psychologist. 16, 646-48.