Module Provider: Business Informatics, Systems and Accounting
Number of credits: 40 [20 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring / Summer term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded: MMM049 Accounting and Finance Project
Current from: 2018/9

Module Convenor: Dr Dan Zhou


Type of module:

Summary module description:

To provide students with an understanding of the main research skills necessary to undertake an original piece of research at Masters level.


To give students an awareness of the appropriate use of methodology, theory, data, literature review, and original research in a Masters dissertation. To enable students to produce a piece of original research.

Assessable learning outcomes:

By the end of the module it is expected that the student will be able to:

1. Assemble a literature review on a given topic which provides a synthesis and 

critical analysis of the relevant literature.

2. Understand the main methodological questions concerning research in management and the social sciences.

3. Appreciate the different main approaches towards the integration of theory into a research project.

4. Assess the suitability and usefulness of alternative sources of data for the analysis of research questions.

5. Compose a research proposal outlining a research project suitable for a Masters level dissertation.

6. Produce an original dissertation, which critically analyses a particular research question and examines this question using appropriate data and methodology.

Additional outcomes:

Students will develop an understanding of the research process and the main challenges encountered in undertaking a research project. Their skills with regard to organising and executing such a project will be enhanced. Skills regarding the collection and analysis of data, the surveying and synthesis of existing literature on a topic, the application of theoretical models to practical questions, and the preparation and production of substantial reports will also be improved. They will also be able to produce a structured research proposal.

Outline content:

• The nature and practice of research

• The literature review process and the composition of a literature review

• The nature and role of methodology in management research

• The role and application of theory in management research

• Quantitative and qualitative data sources

• Data analysis and writing-up research findings 

Global context:

The content is based on global accounting standards and international financial management policies and practices. It also involves studying global institutions and corporations.  

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

The module is delivered based on 1 2h session providing general guidance on research methods and paradigms as well as providing information on the specific aspects of the dissertation that students would need to pay attention to.  Students are then provided with one to one supervision meetings for their dissertation over the spring and summer terms so they are provided with the support specifically tailored to their needs. Students are expected to read a number of references provided by their supervisors.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 2
Project Supervision 20
Guided independent study 10 238 130
Total hours by term 10.00 260.00 130.00
Total hours for module 400.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Dissertation 100

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

The proposal and literature review word limit is 4000 no excess will be read. Submission for this will be in week 34.

The final dissertation word limit is 10,000-12,000 words (including references). No excess will be read.  Submission for this will be in week 50.


Formative assessment methods:

Students are required to provide drafts of the main parts of the dissertation and the final draft. They are provided with the feedback on all written work which allows them to improve their final draft that they submit in summer.

Penalties for late submission:
Penalties for late submission on this module are in accordance with the University policy. Please refer to page 5 of the Postgraduate Guide to Assessment for further information:

Assessment requirements for a pass:

It is a requirement of the award of the MSc that students pass this module with 50%.

Reassessment arrangements:

By resubmission of the dissertation (with the dissertation now carrying 100% weight). Students only have the right to be reassessed once.

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

Printing and binding:

Students are required to submit two bound copies of their dissertation. Printing costs are as follows: Black and white printing per page A4 = 5p A3 = 10p Colour printing per page A4 = 30p A3 = 60p Prices correct at the time of publishing.

Last updated: 4 December 2018


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