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Psychology Research Project

  • Module code: PS6000
  • Year: 2018/9
  • Level: Year 6
  • Credits: 30.00
  • Pre-requisites: Successful completion of PS5001 Psychology Research Methods 2
  • Co-requisites: None

Summary

This module will provide the opportunity to study and employ different methodologies in psychology by evaluating the strengths and limitations of different research designs. Students will execute an empirical research project on a topic agreed in consultation with a Psychology staff supervisor. Supervisory sessions with an academic supervisor will guide students to conduct a literature review, formulate a research question, design a research study, and consider research ethics relating to their study, culminating in data collection and writing up of a research report which satisfies APA guidelines.

Aims

  • To develop research skills in a particular area of psychology;
  • To develop the skills to review of the psychological literature and to formulate a research question in agreement with a designated project supervisor;
  • To provide the opportunity to work independently to plan, execute and write up a specific research project in an area of psychology, under supervision;
  • To understand the importance of ethics in psychological research, and the ethical requirements of Kingston University and the British Psychological Society.

Learning outcomes

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

  • Conduct reviews of the psychological literature pertaining to areas of psychology;
  • Practice how to plan, design, and conduct research in psychology, with consideration to ethical provision relating to the research with human participants;
  • Work independently in the analysis, synthesis and critical appraisal of an area of psychological research;
  • Present a research project in written format with appropriate commentary to a wider audience.

Curriculum content

Topics covered will include:

  • Conducting a literature search.
  • Ethics
  • Conducting a literature review
  • Writing a research report and APA referencing
  • Research design and methodology
  • Data collection and recruitment of participants
  • Managing, analysing, presenting and interpreting data

Teaching and learning strategy

Five one-hour keynote lectures on a variety of topics will provide research skills to synthesise the research methods teaching and training that students have had at levels 4 and 5. These lectures, designed to help students to prepare for their final year research project, will cover issues such as research ethics and the ethics proposal submission process, how to conduct a search of the pertinent literature using the LRC online resources, how to use experiment generating software and the research participation management web interface, and how to write up qualitative and quantitative research. Some of these lectures will be interactive, and will cover PDP skills necessary for this module including time management, independent study, and developing good professional relationship with their supervisor.

Students will implement their research project on the basis of self-directed learning and formal supervision meetings. Students will meet individually or in groups with a project supervisor to review the psychological literature, and formulate a research question with the designated project supervisor. They will work independently to plan, execute and write up a specific research project in an area of psychology, with supervision from their project supervisor.

Breakdown of Teaching and Learning Hours

Definitive KIS Category Indicative Description Hours
Scheduled learning and teaching Keynote lectures 5
Scheduled learning and teaching Supervision 5
Scheduled learning and teaching Independent study 290
Total (number of credits x 10) 300

Assessment strategy

Students will be required to conduct a literature review that informs and motivates the research project. This will form the basis of an interim report, a formative assessment, submitted at the end of the first semester. The interim report will also include an application for ethical approval of the project. The comments on the interim report will feed forward to improve the final research project.

A final research project ranging between 7,000 to 10,000 words (100%) will be submitted at the end of the module.

Mapping of Learning Outcomes to Assessment Strategy (Indicative)

Learning Outcome Assessment Strategy
Conduct reviews of the psychological literature pertaining to areas of psychology Formatively through interim report and summatively through research project
Understand how to plan, design, and conduct research in psychology, with consideration to ethical provision relating to the research with human participants Formatively through supervision and summatively through research project
To work independently to plan, execute and write up a specific research project in an area of psychology, with supervision from a member of staff. Formatively through interim report and summatively through research project
Present the results in both written and oral format with appropriate commentary to a wider audience Summatively through research project

Breakdown of Major Categories of Assessment

Assessment Type Assessment Name Assessment Weighting
CWK Research Project 100
Total (to equal 100%) 100%

Achieving a pass

It IS NOT a requirement that any major assessment category is passed separately in order to achieve an overall pass for the module

Bibliography core texts

Breakwell, G.M., Hammond, S., Fife-Schaw, C., & Smith, J.A. (2006). Research methods in psychology (3rd ed.). London: Sage.

Evans, J. (2007). Your psychology project: The essential guide. London: Sage.

Field, A. & Hole, G. (2003). How to design and report experiments. London: Sage.

Wood, C., Giles, D., & Percy, C. (2009). Your psychology project handbook: Becoming a researcher. Harlow: Pearson Education Ltd.

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