Module UXB-3900:
Research Dissertation

Module Facts

Run by School of Music and Media

40 Credits or 20 ECTS Credits

Semester 1 & 2

Organiser: Dr Eben Muse

Overall aims and purpose

This modules consits of two parts, a research methods component in the autumn semester that is assessed by means of a 2,000 word research proposal, and a period of supervised research culminating in the submission of a 10,000 word dissertation. There is opportunity to employ creative methodologies for practice-based students to utilise their learning and skills in a research context through a part-practical dissertation.

Course content

This module involves the production of an extended piece of critical writing of a length and quality appropriate to the culmination of the undergraduate degree scheme. Drawing on knowledge and critical methodologies learned earlier in the degree, students are assisted via workshops and individual supervisions in devising, refining, developing and presenting a substantial piece of critical work on a topic of their choosing. The series of introductory lectures and workshops focus on how to develop the initial research idea into a workable project presented in appropriate scholarly form. Students develop critical self-reflection via Research Progress Log and via regular discussions with the supervisor.

This module is a period of supervised research culminating in the submission of a 10,000-word dissertation worth 40 credits. There will be a series of 6 workshops to prepare the students with research skills and the opportunity to attend further optional workshops in the School and the College as appropriate.

Assessment Criteria

threshold

Submitted work is adequate and shows an acceptable level of competence as follows: • Generally accurate but with omissions and errors. • Assertions are made without clear supporting evidence or reasoning. • Has structure but is lacking in clarity and therefore relies on the reader to make links and assumptions. • Draws on a relatively narrow range of material.

C- to C+

Submitted work is competent throughout and occasionally distinguished by superior style, approach and choice of supporting materials. It demonstrates: • Good structure and logically developed arguments. • At least in parts draws on material that has been sourced and assessed as a result of independent study, or in a way unique to the student. • Assertions are, in the main, backed by evidence and sound reasoning. • Accuracy and presentation in an appropriate academic style.

good

Submitted work is competent throughout and distinguished by superior style, approach and choice of supporting materials. It demonstrates: • Very good structure and logically developed arguments. • Draws on material that has been sourced and assessed as a result of independent study, or in a way unique to the student. • Assertions are backed by evidence and sound reasoning.

excellent

Submitted work is of an outstanding quality and excellent in one or more of the following ways: • Has originality of exposition with the student's own thinking being readily apparent. • Provides clear evidence of extensive and relevant independent study. • Arguments are laid down with clarity and provide the reader with successive stages of consideration to reach conclusions.

Learning outcomes

  1. Apply a range of study skills and methodologies appropriate to research in the Arts and Humanities.

  2. Define a coherent research question, and design and implement a programme of study to investigate this question.

  3. Embed a substantial piece of academic research within an appropriate set of cultural, social, institutional, economic and/or critical frameworks.

  4. Work independently to deadline over a sustained period of time.

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
DISSERTATION Dissertation 90
LOGBOOK OR PORTFOLIO Progress Log 10

Teaching and Learning Strategy

Hours
Workshop

1 hour workshop per week for the first six weeks of autumn semester plus additional workshops in weeks 11 of autumn semester and week 2 of Spring semester. Additional optional workshops available in School and College; students are expected to attend at least 2 hour long workshops in addition to the mandatory programme.

10
One-to-one supervision

3 hours of contact periods with supervisor (usually 15mins per week with supervisor)

3
Private study 387

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
  • Information retrieval - Able to access different and multiple sources of information
  • 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.
  • Management - Able to utilise, coordinate and control resources (human, physical and/or financial)
  • 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

  • An understanding of creative and critical processes, and of the wide range of skills inherent in creative writing. (NAWE Creative Writing Benchmark Statement 3.1).
  • Knowledge of a wide range of canonical English texts, providing a confident understanding of literary traditions as well as the confidence to experiment and challenge conventions when writing creatively. (English Benchmark Statement 3.1).
  • An awareness of writing and publishing contexts, opportunities and audiences in the wider world (NAWE Creative Writing Benchmark Statement 3.1).
  • Artistic engagement and ability to articulate complex ideas in oral and written forms. (NAWE Creative Writing Benchmark Statement 3.2).
  • Ability to connect creative and critical ideas between and among forms, techniques and types of creative and critical praxis. (NAWE Creative Writing Benchmark Statement 3.2; English Benchmark Statement 3.2).
  • Awareness of how different social and cultural contexts affect the nature of language and meaning (English Benchmark Statement 3.2).
  • Reflective practitioner skills, including awareness of the practice of others in collaborative learning (NAWE Creative Writing Benchmark Statement 3.2; English Benchmark Statement 3.2).
  • The ability to synthesize information from various sources, choosing and applying appropriate concepts and methods (English Benchmark Statement 3.3).
  • Ability to formulate and solve problems, anticipate and accommodate change, and work within contexts of ambiguity, uncertainty and unfamiliarity (NAWE Creative Writing Benchmark Statement 3.2; English Benchmark Statement 3.3).
  • Ability to engage in processes of drafting and redrafting texts to achieve clarity of expression and an appropriate style. (English Benchmark Statement 3.3; NAWE Creative Writing Benchmark Statement 3.2).
  • Ability to gather information, analyse, interpret and discuss different viewpoints (NAWE Creative Writing Benchmark Statement 3.2; English Benchmark Statement 3.3).
  • Intellectual skills specific to Music – contextual knowledge, cultural awareness, critical understanding, repertoire knowledge, curiosity, analytical demonstration
  • Intellectual skills shared with other disciplines – research and exploration, reasoning and logic, understanding, critical judgement, assimilation and application
  • Skills of communication and interaction – oral and written communication, public presentation, team-working and collaboration, awareness of professional protocols, sensitivity, ICT skills, etc.
  • Skills of personal management – self-motivation, self-critical awareness, independence, entrepreneurship and employment skills, time management and reliability, organisation, etc.
  • Enhanced powers of imagination and creativity (4.17)

Courses including this module

Compulsory in courses:

Optional in courses: