PYMCRM-Research Methods and Data Analysis (Conversion)

Module Provider: Psychology
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2018/9

Module Convenor: Dr Eugene McSorley


Type of module:

Summary module description:

PYMCRM - Research Methods and Data Analysis (Conversion)


The aims of the module are that students should develop their knowledge of psychological research methods, statistics, and computer packages for data analysis. They will gain practical experience of a variety of methods, analysis techniques, and report writing.

Assessable learning outcomes:

By the end of the module the student will be able to:

- Show the required standard of knowledge about the statistical concepts and techniques that have been taught, and know which techniques are appropriate for particular data

- Use computer packages to implement the statistical methods

- Show knowledge of questionnaire design and the principles underlying the use of questionnaires

- Be able to design, carry out and report experimental studies of psychological phenomena

Additional outcomes:

Students will gain practical experience of using a number of psychological research methods. They will have the opportunity to apply their knowledge of research methodology, data analysis and literature searching in essays and exam questions produced for other modules on the course.

Students will participate in research studies being conducted in the School, enhancing their knowledge of research methodology and enabling them to apply their knowledge of research design and procedure to real examples.

Outline content:

- Introduction to mathematical and statistical concepts in Psychology.

- Topics in statistics, including the normal distribution, parametric and nonparametric tests (correlation, paired tests, chi-square), analysis of variance, regression and principal components analysis, and their applications in psychological research.

- Introduction to questionnaire design, qualitative data analysis and interview techniques.

- How to choose of statistical methods.

- Use of a statistical package to analyse and present data.

- Overview of project planning including ethical issues.

- Designing, running and analysing the data from experimental mini-projects.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

(a) Lectures on research methods and statistics, including introductory statistical teaching for beginners; then lectures on general techniques in psychological research, based on the General Linear Model and on non-parametric statistics; designing and administering questionnaires; psychometrics; qualitative methods such as content analysis; Principal Components Analysis.

(b) Laboratory practicals on statistical computing and related topics.

(c) Completion of mini-projects (Autumn – data is provided; Spring – data is collected by students) and associated reports.

(d) Statistics support workshops, where small groups of students can receive help with any topics relating to statistics they have found difficult in lectures or practical classes, and with the analyses they need to employ in their mini-projects

(e) Participation in research studies, selected from those available, followed by debriefing, and answering questions on each. Students who have an approved reason for non-participation will be given an alternative assignment of equivalent value.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 20 9
Project Supervision 4
Demonstration 20 6
Practicals classes and workshops 47 46
Guided independent study 18 30
Total hours by term 105.00 95.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Report 50
Practical skills assessment 10
Set exercise 5
Class test administered by School 35

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

This module is assessed by coursework.

Students will complete two miniproject reports, one in Autumn, one in Spring, that describe an experimental study (contributing 50% of overall module mark).

Students' understanding of research methods and data analysis is also assessed by 2 end-of-term tests (35% of module mark).

Practical skills assessment (10% of overall module mark) – weekly online tests

Set exercise (5% of the module mark) – completion of the required hours of research participation in research studies in the School of Psychology & Clinical Language Sciences across Autumn and Spring terms

Formative assessment methods:

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:

A mark of 50% overall

Reassessment arrangements:

Reassessment is by examination and resubmission of an experimental report in August/September

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

Required text book:

Rowntree, D. (1982) Statistics without tears: A primer for non-mathematicians. Penguin books. ISBN: 01401.2632 0. Very cheap copies available online.

Field, A (2013). Discovering statistics using IBM SPSS statistics. Sage Publications. ISBN: 9781446249185. £43.99. Often available secondhand.

Last updated: 20 April 2018


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