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Dissertation

  • Module code: EL6000
  • Year: 2018/9
  • Level: Year 6
  • Credits: 30.00
  • Pre-requisites: SUCCESSFUL COMPLETION OF EL5001
  • Co-requisites: None

Summary

The dissertation is a core module for all full-field literature students. Under guidance from an allocated specialist member of staff, and supported by interactive workshops, you will produce a sustained piece of research, either in the form of a traditional 10,000 word dissertation or alternatively in the form of creative project and accompanying 3000 word rationale. The module culminates in a student conference, which you will work with your peers to organise, and which your contribution to will also be assessed. An initial dissertation proposal must be submitted in September before the module begins. At the end of the module you will have produced a critically engaged and fully developed piece of independent research.

Aims

 

  • To provide an opportunity for students to work independently on a specialist area of research
  • To exercise and deploy knowledge and skills acquired in earlier stages of the programme
  • To focus in depth on a specific and discrete topic in a given field
  • To develop and sustain a thesis, within a guiding theoretical framework.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the module, students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of contemporary theory and research in the chosen      area of study.
  • Show an ability to develop a detailed and logical argument and/or creative response within a limited space and frame of reference;
  • Exhibit a capacity to organise work their effectively and independently over a period of time, with limited supervision;
  • Demonstrate an ability to formulate and pursue a topic of their own choosing, to structure      their own work and to search out and use their own resources and research material. Where appropriate, this should involve both primary and secondary sources.
  • Evidence originality in their handling of this material.

Curriculum content

The module will provide introductory advice on how to prepare a dissertation proposal and, through supervision meetings, the student will devise suitable content to help them prepare for their dissertation.

Teaching and learning strategy

In teaching block one students will attend introductory workshops on how to undertake a dissertation and an introductory meeting with the supervisor, prior to beginning formal dissertation supervision in teaching block 2. 

Breakdown of Teaching and Learning Hours

Definitive KIS Category Indicative Description Hours
Scheduled learning and teaching Interactive Lecture/workshop x 3 and a minimum of 5 supervisory sessions with the assigned supervisor. A minimum of 4 student conference planning meetings, and a student conference of at least 5 hours in duration. 11
Guided independent study 289
Total (number of credits x 10) 300

Assessment strategy

1) A 10,000 written dissertation

OR

 A creative project of equivalent weight, with a 3000 word rationale. Students will be given guidance as to what constitutes an equivalent project and this must be approved by the module leader, but examples might include a 6000 word creative writing piece, 15 minute film with storyboards, photographic, sculpture or art portfolio with preliminary sketches, performance piece with script or planning notes, or musical composition with accompanying score.The 3000 word rationale will provide a critical commentary for the creative piece, examining the relationship between the project and the texts under examination.  (80%)

2) A learning contract including final dissertation proposal, to be submitted in week 5 of TB1 (10%)

3) Group planning log sheets, documenting attendance at group meetings and contribution to the planning of the final student conference, including post-conference evaluation (10%)

The dissertation is designed to test students' abilities to independently construct a sustained creative and/or creative project. The group planning logs record students' contribution to the group process, while the dissertation proposal tests students' ability to plan an independent project and manage their time effectively.

Mapping of Learning Outcomes to Assessment Strategy (Indicative)

Learning Outcome Assessment Strategy
Demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of contemporary theory and research in the chosen area of study. assessed formatively and summatively via dissertation
Show an ability to develop a detailed and logical argument within a limited space and frame of reference; assessed formatively and summatively via dissertation
Exhibit a capacity to organise their work effectively and independently over a period of time, with limited supervision; assessed formatively and summatively via dissertation, learning contract, and group planning log sheets
Demonstrate an ability to formulate and pursue a topic of their own choosing, to structure their own work and to search out and use their own resources and research material. Where appropriate, this should involve both primary and secondary sources. assessed formatively and summatively via a portfolio of work
Evidence originality in their handling of this material. assessed formatively and summatively by the group planning log sheets.

Breakdown of Major Categories of Assessment

Assessment Type Assessment Name Assessment Weighting
CWK Learning Contract 10
CWK Group Planning log sheets 10
CWK Dissertation 80
Total (to equal 100%) 100%

Achieving a pass

It IS a requirement that the major category of assessment is passed in order to achieve an overall pass for the module

Bibliography core texts

Greetham,
B., How to Write your Undergraduate
Dissertation
(Palgrave Study Skills). (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan,
2009)


Bibliography recommended reading

Levin, P., Excellent Dissertations! (Student-Friendly Guides), 2nd Edition. (Maidenhead, Open University Press, 2011)   

Robson, C., How to do a Research Project: a Guide for Undergraduate Students (London, Wiley, 2006).

Swetnam, D., and Swetnam, R., Writing Your Dissertation: The bestselling guide to planning, preparing and presenting first-class work (The How to Series) 3rd Revised Edition. (Oxford, How to Books, 2009)

Walliman, Nicholas, Your Undergraduate Dissertation: the Essential Guide for Success (London, Sage, 2004).

Watson, G., Writing a Thesis, a guide to long essays and dissertations, (London: Longman, 1987)

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