Module JXH-1043:
Practical Research Skills

Module Facts

Run by School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences

10 Credits or 5 ECTS Credits

Semester 2

Organiser: Dr Sam Oliver

Overall aims and purpose

You will develop practical research skills that enable you to answer a research question(s) in a concise scientific report using data collection, analysis and interpretation skills learnt on the course. These research skills are essential to develop for future courses on your degree (e.g. project proposal, research project, dissertation, etc). They are also important to develop for most careers beyond University. Indeed, researchers work across all industries and their analysis and report writing skills are vital for employers.

Course content

During the course, you will develop many research skills that includes developing your own research question and hypothesis; designing and completing data collections; performing and interpreting descriptive and inferential statistical analysis using SPSS; presenting statistics and data in tables and figures; and concise report writing.

Important: Module failure that prevents you passing the year will require resit assessment and attendance at Supplementary Assessment Week (exact date TBC but expected to be fourth week of July 2019)

Assessment Criteria


D- to D+ - Pass: Basic knowledge and limited understanding of research principles, design and statistics. Presentation of data is clear but may contain some errors. Statistical analysis is mostly correct. Only a basic interpretation of the statistical analysis is offered (e.g. limited discussion of practical significance). The work is organised but may contain some poor spelling and grammar.


A- to A - Excellent - Deep knowledge and understanding of research design, principles and statistics with excellent capacity to formulate and answer basic research questions. Excellent presentation of results and statistics. Correct statistics procedures performed with almost no statistics interpretation or calculation errors. Evidence of deeper understanding of some of the analyses (e.g. identification of assumptions and limitations, use of 1 or 2-tailed hypotheses, interpretation of the meaningfulness of the statistics). The statistical and practical findings of each analysis will be clear to the reader. The work is well organised and written with almost no typographical or grammar errors.


C- to C+ - Good – A good grasp of research principles, design and statistics demonstrating adequate knowledge and understanding with the capacity to formulate and answer basic research questions. Presentation of the data is clear. Mostly correct statistical procedures performed. Reasonable interpretation of statistical analysis but mostly surface level understanding shown (e.g. only the main finding of each analysis). This work is well organised but may contain a few spelling or grammar errors.

Learning outcomes

  1. Be able to formulate and answer basic research questions

  2. Be able to interpret the statistical outputs produced by SPSS

  3. Be able to communicate data collected in a scientific report using appropriate statistics and figures or tables

  4. Be able to collect data in a systematic manner

  5. Be able to analyse data with descriptive and inferential statistics (e.g., mean and standard deviation, t-tests, correlation, simple regression, ANOVA) using SPSS for Windows

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight

Multiple choice question exam completed online that tests students knowledge on correlations, regression, t-test, and ANOVA statistical tests.

COURSEWORK Practical Research Skills Written Assignment

An individual scientific report from a student-led data collection. Students will use statistical tests to analyse data and answer hypotheses they developed. Exceeding or undershooting the word limit by >10% will result in a reduction of one categorical boundary, e.g. A- to B+


Teaching and Learning Strategy

Practical classes and workshops 2
Private study 68
Lecture 20
Seminar 10

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
  • Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
  • Critical analysis & Problem Solving - Able to deconstruct and analyse problems or complex situations. To find solutions to problems through analyses and exploration of all possibilities using appropriate methods, rescources and creativity.
  • Presentation - Able to clearly present information and explanations to an audience. Through the written or oral mode of communication accurately and concisely.
  • Teamwork - Able to constructively cooperate with others on a common task, and/or be part of a day-to-day working team
  • Argument - Able to put forward, debate and justify an opinion or a course of action, with an individual or in a wider group setting
  • Self-awareness & Reflectivity - Having an awareness of your own strengths, weaknesses, aims and objectives. Able to regularly review, evaluate and reflect upon the performance of yourself and others

Subject specific skills

  • research and assess paradigms, theories, principles, concepts and factual information, and apply such skills in explaining and solving problems
  • describe, synthesise, interpret, analyse and evaluate information and data relevant to a professional or vocational context
  • demonstrate effective written and/or oral communication and presentation skills
  • work effectively independently and with others
  • communicate succinctly at a level appropriate to different audiences.


Resource implications for students

Students are advised to bring laptops to lectures so they can practice using statistical analysis program SPSS. It is advised students try to download this software ahead of starting the course. SPSS is free for students to download from Bangor University IT services. Note. SPSS may not work on some tablets.

Talis Reading list

Reading list

Key readings

• Thomas, J.R., Nelson, J.K. and Silverman S.J. (2011) Research Methods in Physical Activity (6th Edition), Human Kinetics. (ISBN: 0736056203).

• Vincent, W.J. (2005) Statistics in Kinesiology (3rd Edition), Human Kinetics. (ISBN: 0736057927).

• Ntoumanis, N. (2001). A Step-by-Step Guide to SPSS for Sport and Exercise Studies. Routledge.

Courses including this module

Compulsory in courses: