This module aims to develop your knowledge and understanding of research methods in education. Working from research questions that might inform your future dissertation, the module builds on the Part 1 module: Researching Learning. You will cover fundamentals of a good research design and data collection and analysis, including both qualitative and quantitative techniques, with the research question always being central. The module will cover the steps necessary to prepare for your dissertation project. You will be encouraged to be critical and analytical. You will work independently and collaboratively and will benefit from feedback from both your tutors and your peers.
Aims and Objectives
Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:
- Actively investigate issues and collect evidence to assess their validity;
- Know methods to design appropriate research instruments for collecting primary data from educational contexts;
- Know how to design an original research project;
- Use appropriate statistical and other research software;
- Design research instruments and select appropriate data analysis techniques for qualitative and quantitative educational data;
- Recognise the need to manage time and personnel.
- Manage research projects in educational settings;
- Design your own piece of research, from initial research question to research design and data collection;
- Report and effectively communicate the results of investigations;
- Carry out a range of qualitative and quantitative data analyses;
- Critically evaluate and interpret information;
- Report educational research findings in an appropriate format;
- Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of research design for education;
- Design, analyse, and evaluate quantitative and qualitative data and evidence;
Topics normally covered in this module will include:
- An introduction to designing a good research question for a dissertation project;
- Research design, including but not limited to issues like design setup and sampling;
- Collecting data: observation, interview, focus groups and questionnaires as research methods;
- Analysing qualitative (educational) data, for example ‘codes and themes’ and grounded theory;
- Analysing quantitative (educational) data with SPSS (or other statistical software): this builds on Part 1 with two-group designs, ANOVA, basic regression;
- Reporting data analysis results;
- Structuring a research project;
Learning and Teaching
Teaching and learning methods
A mix of lectures and seminars normally in two-hour sessions supported by directed reading and additional practical research activities. The sessions will include peer feedback and assessment opportunities, and whole group interactive teaching. Where useful, technology will be used to support the session (e.g. use of statistical software, questionnaire software, etc.). In addition, sessions will generally be supported by tutorials for additional questions, stretch targets and support.
|Total study time||300|
Resources & Reading list
Software. SPSS, available via http://software.soton.ac.uk
Additional resources. Online videos and resources will be made available.
Lichtman, M. (2010). Qualitative Research in Education: a User's Guide.. London: Sage.
Field, A. (2013). Discovering Statistics Using IBM SPSS Statistics. London: Sage.
Cohen, L., Manion, L. and Morrison, K. (2011). Research Methods in Education.. London: Routledge.
Muijs, D. (2004). Doing Quantitative Research in Education with SPSS.. London: Sage.
Sharp, J. (2009). Success with your Education Research Project.. Exeter: Learning Matters.
Punch, K (2009). Introduction to Research Methods in Education.. London: Sage.
Denscombe, M (2014). The Good Research Guide: For Small-Scale Social Research Projects. Maidenhead: McGraw-Hill Education.
This is how we’ll formally assess what you have learned in this module.
This is how we’ll assess you if you don’t meet the criteria to pass this module.
Repeat type: Internal & External