Module ICL-1008:
Research and Study Skills

Module Facts

Run by School of Computer Science and Electronic Engineering

10 Credits or 5 ECTS Credits

Semester 1

Organiser: Dr David Edward Perkins

Overall aims and purpose

This module aims to develop the study skills of the learners, enabling the production of sound academic writing, the introduction of critical thought and basic research skills. It will enable students to develop skills in academic writing, the use of academic conventions, information research, reflection and the management and organisation of their work.

Course content

Indicative content includes:

● Academic writing including essays and reports with reference to how they are structured and compiled using appropriate language.

● Use of academic conventions within work, notably Harvard citation and referencing.

● Information research using appropriate resources such as MOODLE, the University Online Library, Grŵp e-resources via Athens such as Infotrac and methods of recording research effectively.

● Legal aspects of academic writing: such as plagiarism and copyright practices.

● Reflective writing and practice, including theories and models that underpin such practice and the importance of reflective practice to learning.

● Time management including effective planning and prioritisation of tasks.

Assessment Criteria


Equivalent to the range 70%+. Assemble critically evaluated, relevent areas of knowledge and theory to constuct professional-level solutions to tasks and questions presented. Is able to cross-link themes and aspects to draw considered conclusions. Presents outputs in a cohesive, accurate, and efficient manner.


Equivalent to 40%. Uses key areas of theory or knowledge to meet the Learning Outcomes of the module. Is able to formulate an appropriate solution to accurately solve tasks and questions. Can identify individual aspects, but lacks an awareness of links between them and the wider contexts. Outputs can be understood, but lack structure and/or coherence.


Equivalent to the range 60%-69%. Is able to analyse a task or problem to decide which aspects of theory and knowledge to apply. Solutions are of a workable quality, demonstrating understanding of underlying principles. Major themes can be linked appropriately but may not be able to extend this to individual aspects. Outputs are readily understood, with an appropriate structure but may lack sophistication.

Learning outcomes

  1. Explain how research informs and can enhance practice.

  2. Demonstrate the ability to retrieve relevant information from a range of sources and to reference it appropriately.

  3. Demonstrate understanding and use of theories and models of reflection and an awareness of the value of reflection to learning.

  4. Provide evidence of effective academic writing in a range of forms and the appropriate use of academic conventions.

Assessment Methods

Teaching and Learning Strategy

Work-based learning

140 of the 200 notional learning hours - 140 hours tutor/employer directed student learning.

Relevant theoretical material is delivered using a blend of online material via Moodle, tutor visits to the workplace and employer input/support.

Assignments for this module aim to link theory to real employment situations and to encourage reflective practice.

Work-based learning

60 of the 200 notional learning hours - 60 theory hours.

Relevant theoretical material is delivered using a blend of online material via Moodle, tutor visits to the workplace and employer input/support.

Assignments for this module aim to link theory to real employment situations and to encourage reflective practice.


Transferable skills

  • Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
  • Numeracy - Proficiency in using numbers at appropriate levels of accuracy
  • Computer Literacy - Proficiency in using a varied range of computer software
  • Self-Management - Able to work unsupervised in an efficient, punctual and structured manner. To examine the outcomes of tasks and events, and judge levels of quality and importance
  • Information retrieval - Able to access different and multiple sources of information
  • Presentation - Able to clearly present information and explanations to an audience. Through the written or oral mode of communication accurately and concisely.

Subject specific skills

  • Knowledge and understanding of facts, concepts, principles & theories
  • Knowledge of management techniques to achieve objectives
  • Deploy tools effectively
  • Development of general transferable skills
  • Knowledge and/or understanding of appropriate scientific and engineering principles
  • Principles of appropriate supporting engineering and scientific disciplines


Reading list

Cairns, P. and Cox, A., 2008. Research Methods for Human-Computer Interaction . Cambridge University Press.

Cottrell, S., 2008. The Study Skills Handbook. 3 rd ed. Palgrave Macmillan.

Cottrell, S., 2010. Skills for Success: The Personal Development Planning Handbook. 2 nd ed. Palgrave Macmillan.

Cottrell, S., 2011. Critical Thinking Skills: Developing Effective Analysis and Argument. 2 nd ed. Palgrave Macmillan.

Greetham, B., 2008. How to Write Better Essays. 2 nd ed. Palgrave Macmillan.

Pears, R. and Shields, G., 2008. Cite them right: the essential referencing guide. 7th ed. Pear Tree Book.

Courses including this module