module specification

SS6P04 - Psychology and Sociology Dissertation (2017/18)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2017/18
Module title Psychology and Sociology Dissertation
Module level Honours (06)
Credit rating for module 30
School School of Social Sciences
Total study hours 300
25 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
275 hours Guided independent study
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Practical Examination 10%   Presentation
Coursework 20%   Project proposal
Dissertation 70%   Dissertation
Running in 2017/18
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Year North Wednesday Afternoon

Module summary

The students carry out an in-depth piece of sociological research and analysis in an area of their choice. In the first half of this module students will learn about different aspects of writing a dissertation.

Module aims

A1. The students will use theoretical and empirical knowledge, research and analytical skills gained in their programme of study to investigate the topic and formulate a dissertation.
A2. The students will  produce an original investigation/examination of a relevant topic.
A3. They will learn how to apply their knowledge of research methods, design and analysis to a specific research project. 


1. Workshops on

- Research Question
- Literature Review
- Research Design – qualitative methods
- Research design – quantitative methods
- Ethics
- Data Analysis and Writing Up
2. Independent work leading to a 10000 words dissertation

Learning and teaching

In the first term weekly workshops will provide the students with guidance on doing their dissertation and give them opportunities to discuss progress. The students will be required to make a short presentation on the progress of their work and submit the project proposal. In the second term they will work independently, supported by their supervisors. Supervisors will be allocated on the basis of their research and scholarship expertise in a particular topic. Learning will also be guided by reading and resources made available through the VLE.   

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:
(LO1) Identify an area or theme worthy of psychological/sociological enquiry
(LO2) Use theoretical and empirical knowledge, research and analytical skills gained in their course of study to investigate an area and formulate a dissertation
(LO3) Undertake a literature search and review.
(LO4) Make a critical analysis of an area or theme under investigation with particular attention being paid to the theoretical and methodological components of the analysis
(LO5) Draw conclusions from their analysis and where appropriate make possible policy recommendations
(LO6) Write a well-presented piece of work in the conventional academic format using documented sources

Assessment strategy

In weeks 6-10 students make short presentations about their work, which they have to pass.  In week 14 they submit a 1500 words project proposal with 20% weighting. In week 31 they submit a 10000 words dissertation with 80% weighting. 


Bryman, A.(2008)  Social Research Methods, OUP
Luker, K. (2010) Salsa Dancing into the Social Sciences: Research in an Age of Info-Glut, Harvard University Press
Punch, K. (2005) The Introduction to Social Research: Quantitative and Qualitative Approaches Sage
Rudestan, K & Newton, R (2007)   Surviving Your Dissertation, Sage