Research Methods & Skills
Run by School of History, Law and Social Sciences
15.000 Credits or 7.500 ECTS Credits
Organiser: Mr David Clifford
Overall aims and purpose
The purpose of this module is to provide participants with the fundamentals of research methods and skills linked to procurement law, strategy and practice. Participants on the Blended Learning LLM in Procurement Law, Strategy & Practice programme will be provided with specialist training, knowledge of key research techniques and analytical skills necessary for independent work in procurement research at postgraduate level. Participants’ knowledge and experience of research methodology will be broadened to include the comprehensive skills necessary for undertaking doctrinal, socio-legal, empirical, comparative and interdisciplinary procurement research. The module will also be used to encourage participants to develop an ability to apply their knowledge to a practical situation so as to identify key issues, think critically, carry out appropriate research, work independently, and present research.
The module will cover the following topics:
- Citation skills,
- Using the law library remotely,
- Identification and evaluation of sources,
- Doing a literature review,
- Referencing correctly,
- Essay writing for Masters participants,
- Writing a research proposal,
- Writing a good essay,
- Compiling a bibliography,
- Avoiding plagiarism,
- Planning a research methodology and applying this to a research scenario,
- Planning a dissertation project.
(50-59% / C- to C+) Displays ability within a specialized area of knowledge and skills, employing appropriate skills to conduct research. Work at threshold quality demonstrates an adequate knowledge and understanding of current issues in this field of study. It shows a critical awareness of current problems, some of which is informed by thinking at the forefront of the academic discipline. Work at this level shows a developing understanding of techniques applicable to the student’s own research. It shows an ability to apply knowledge in an original way, and to use established techniques of research and enquiry to interpret knowledge in the discipline. The conceptual understanding evidenced by the work indicates that the student can evaluate scholarship in the field.
(60-69% / B- to B +) Displays accomplished ability within a specialized area of knowledge and skills, employing good quality skills to conduct research. Good work in this module will demonstrate a systematic knowledge and understanding of current issues in this field of study. It shows a critical awareness of current problems, much of which is at, or informed by thinking at, the forefront of the academic discipline. Work at this level shows a comprehensive understanding of techniques applicable to the student’s own research. It shows an ability to apply knowledge in an original way, and to use established techniques of research and enquiry to create and interpret knowledge in the discipline. The conceptual understanding evidenced in the work indicates that the student can evaluate advanced scholarship in the discipline. The work shows an ability to evaluate methodologies and develop critiques of them, and, where appropriate, propose hypotheses.
(70+ / A- to A*) Displays mastery of a complex and specialized area of knowledge and skills, employing advanced skills to conduct research. Excellent work in this module will contain the qualities recognized in good work, but will show them in a more consistent way, and at all points. It will demonstrate a systematic knowledge and understanding of current issues in this field of study. It shows a critical awareness of current problems, much of which is at the forefront of this academic discipline. Work at this level shows a comprehensive understanding of techniques applicable to the student’s own research or to advanced scholarship. It shows throughout an ability to apply knowledge in an original way, and to use established techniques of research and enquiry to create and interpret knowledge in the discipline. The conceptual understanding evidenced in the work indicates that the student can critically evaluate advanced scholarship in the discipline, and do so in a consistent manner. The work shows an ability to evaluate methodologies and develop critiques of them, and, where appropriate, propose hypotheses.
Access and locate specialist knowledge to conduct basic and advanced legal and strategic procurement research.
Critically appreciate the basic principles of research design and strategy in procurement.
Critique the different research methods and approaches used in undertaking procurement research.
Critically identify and formulate appropriate procurement research issues and questions.
Locate, evaluate and use relevant legal and non-legal information sources and cite them appropriately.
Analyse and develop a sustained legal argument appropriate to the level of study.
Undertake a critical analysis of the relevant literature and apply it to a real-world scenario.
Utilise appropriately legal research methods and skills in relation to the submission of essays, assignments, video presentations, and a dissertation on procurement by mastering correct citation and writing skills.
Teaching and Learning Strategy
Teaching will be in the form of a dynamic combination of pre-recorded lectures available on Blackboard and on-line live lectures facilitated by the lecturer and driven by class discussions and case study analysis at designated times. Students unable to participate at the time of on-live delivery would be able to download the recordings. Approximately 50% of the sessions will be pre-recorded with the remainder to be on-line live lectures.
Participants will be provided with additional materials for private study and will also have access to Bangor University online library catalogues.
- Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
- 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
- Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
- 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
- Leadership - Able to lead and manage, develop action plans and objectives, offer guidance and direction to others, and cope with the related pressures such authority can result in
Subject specific skills
- Students will acquire an understanding of advanced legal theories and jurisprudence concerning the development of Public Procurement Law at Global, European Union and national levels (UK and Ireland)
- Students will acquire critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights, informed by the latest academic literature, legislation and case law.
Resource implications for students
Modest resources for producing video accounts are available from existing resources within the University such as BangorTV or via the School of Creative Studies and Media.
Higgins and Tatham, Successful legal writing (Sweet & Maxwell 2011). Haigh, Legal English (Routledge-Cavendish 2009). Webley, Legal writing (Routledge-Cavendish 2010). McMillan and Weyers, How to write dissertations & project reports (Prentice Hall 2009). McMillan and Weyers, Study skills for international students (Prentice Hall 2011). Davies, Study skills for international postgraduates (Palgrave 2011).
Pre- and Co-requisite Modules
Courses including this module
Compulsory in courses:
- M1AY: LLM Procurement Law, Strategy & Practice (Distance Learning) year 1 (LLM/PLSP)