The University of Southampton
Courses

HLTH6059 MSc Dissertation

Module Overview

This module will provide you with experience of undertaking an independent research project relevant to your own field of practice. This will include formulating an appropriate question, planning and undertaking the project, analysing data, peer review and writing it up in the form of a paper, with appropriate supervision. The paper will be in a format suitable for publication in a refereed academic journal and will demonstrate knowledge and appraisal of a wide range of relevant literature and show that this has been applied to the design, execution, critique/reflection recommendations, and reporting of the project

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

1) Develop and justify an original research question relevant to your practice/field of interest 2) Conduct an effective literature search related to your research question and critically appraise the literature 3) Demonstrate a clear understanding of different research paradigms and how to apply them appropriately to your chosen research question. 4) Demonstrate a clear understanding of ethics, and research governance principles in relation to your chosen area of research 5) Undertake your research to address your specific question (with appropriate supervision) 6) Demonstrate an ability to analyse research data and critically interpret this in light of current knowledge 7) Justify your conclusions using well-reasoned arguments and taking into account the limitations or constraints of the study. 8) Evaluate and reflect on your own performance as a researcher or practitioner to make recommendations for future practice/research and explain how these recommendations might be implemented for future practice/ research. 9) Communicate findings, succinctly, critically and objectively in a clearly focussed paper thus allowing you to contribute to the growing knowledge base underpinning evidence based practice.

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Develop and justify an original research question relevant to your practice/field of interest.
  • Conduct an effective literature search related to your research question and critically appraise the literature.
  • Demonstrate a clear understanding of different research paradigms and how to apply them appropriately to your chosen research question.
  • Demonstrate a clear understanding of ethics, and research governance principles in relation to your chosen area of research.
  • Undertake your research to address your specific question (with appropriate supervision).
  • Demonstrate an ability to analyse research data and critically interpret this in light of current knowledge.
  • Justify your conclusions using well-reasoned arguments and taking into account the limitations or constraints of the study to make recommendations to/for practice/future research.
  • Communicate findings, succinctly, critically and objectively in a clearly focussed paper thus allowing you to contribute to the growing knowledge base underpinning evidence based practice.

Syllabus

This module builds on content covered in the Research Methods and Evidence Based Practice (or equivalent) module and includes: • Building on critical appraisal skills • Working with a supervisor • Developing an appropriate and feasible research question • Designing a research project and protocol • Ethical and Governance considerations • Peer Review (where appropriate) • Quantitative and qualitative data reporting • Evaluation of the research process/evidence • Reflexion of self as a researcher/practitioner • Presentation skills • Authorship/writing skills • Dissemination strategies • Project and Time management

Special Features

You will have opportunity to work and liaise with research active staff at this research led university.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Active student participation in all learning activities of the module will be promoted so that you assume responsibility for your own learning. This module adopts a range of teaching and learning strategies including: • Self Directed learning • Peer review • Problem solving approaches • Academic supervision • Tutorials • Small collaborative and inter-professional group work (Action Learning sets). • Web based resources • Blackboard (including discussion boards) • Reflective learning • Guided reading

TypeHours
Tutorial24
Follow-up work476
Project supervision10
Preparation for scheduled sessions160
Completion of assessment task80
Total study time750

Resources & Reading list

Lunenberg M et al (2007). Why shouldn't teachers and teacher educators conduct research on their own practice? An epistemological exploration European Educational Research Journal. ,6 , pp. 13-24.

Fonagy, P. and Roth, A (2006). What Works for Whom?:A critical review of psychotherapy research. 

Van Manen, M (1990). Researching Lived Experience: Human Science for an action sensitive pedagogy. 

McDowell I & Newell C. (1996). Measuring Health. A Guide to Rating Scales and Questionnaires. 

Finlay, L. and Gough, B. (2003). Reflexivity: A practical guide for researchers in health and social sciences. 

Portney LG & Watkins MP (2013). ‘Foundations of Clinical Research. Applications to Practice.. 

Walker, D-M. (2014). An Introduction to Health Services Research. 

Green, J. and Thorogood, N. (2009). Qualitative methods for health research. 

Aneshensel C.S (2002). Theory-Based Data Analysis for the Social Sciences. 

Hicks, C (2009). Research Methods for Clinical Therapists: Applied project design and analysis. 

Field, A (2013). Discovering Statistics Using IBM SPSS. 

O'Leary Z (2013). The essential guide to doing your research project. 

Schulz,K and Grimes (2006). The Lancet Handbook of Essential Concepts in Clinical Research. 

Aveyard H. (2014). Doing a literature review in health and social care: a practical guide.. 

Pocock Sj. (1983). Clinical Trials. A practical approach. 

Freshwater, D. (2005). Transforming Nursing through Reflective Practice. 

Holloway, I. and Wheeler, S. (2009). Qualitative Research in Nursing. 

Assessment

Assessment Strategy

1 You will need to produce a research proposal (3500 words +/- 10%) prior to undertaking the data collection phase of your project, this will be either an empirical, literature review or PI based proposal. This will be reviewed by your research supervisor. This must be at a standard commensurate with MSc level this is therefore assessed as pass/fail. It is a course requirement to pass this assessment. 2a You will choose one of three pathways in order to produce your final written piece of work i.e. an empirical study or a literature review study or a practice inquiry (PI). An empirical study will involve collecting new data (quantitative, qualitative, mixed methods) from sources such as patients, staff, students etc. and analysing this. A literature review is a little like a systematic review, where you will review all the current evidence relating to a particular question and draw some conclusions from this. A PI study involves undertaking research into a specific element of your own practice. Regardless of pathway, the written report will be presented as a research paper written to the style/requirements of a refereed academic journal of your choice. You will adhere to the relevant instructions to authors for your chosen journal however there is a maximum word limit of 5,000 words. If the instructions to authors give no, or very high, limits then these figures represent the upper limit. For the assessment you will need to submit the name of the journal and a copy of the ‘instructions to authors’ alongside of the research paper. This will form 100% of the total mark for this module for empirical and PI studies. and addresses LO 1- 9. 3 You are required to produce a comprehensive Project File of your research process which details each stage of your research journey (e.g. how decisions were made, supervision meetings etc). Various items will need to be included as within the log book (as per specified guidelines) all of which will be checked by the research supervisor. This element must be passed in order to complete.

Formative

Research proposal

Summative

MethodPercentage contribution
Written report  (5000 words) 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

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