Module Provider:
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring / Summer term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2023/4

Module Convenor: Dr Lei Tao

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 Mastersdissertation. To enable students to produce a piece of original research that would contribute to the relevant body of knowledge within accounting, financial management and/or business analytics.

This module is particularly relevant for students who might wish to consider pursuing further academic career.

Assessable learning outcomes:

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

  1. Assemble a problematised literature review on a given topic which provides a synthesis and critical analysis of the relevant scholarly work.

  2. Understand the main methodological questions concerning research in management and the social sciences which might include digitalisation and the increasing use of big data  

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

  4. Assess the suitability and usefulness of linking theoretical approaches with the different analytical frameworks to address research questions.

  5. Compose building blocks of research proposal as suitable for a Masters level dissertation.

  6. Produce an original piece of theoretically informed research that addresses the relevant gaps in the existing body of scholarly work.

Additional outcomes:

Students will develop an understanding of the research process and the main challenges encountered in undertaking research activities. Students’ skills with regard to organising and executing research activities will be enhanced. The module will help students to develop skills regarding the collection and analysis of data (where appropriate), the surveying and synthesis of existing literature on a topic to identify any gaps that need addressing, the applications and development of theoretical frameworks.

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 business research

  • The role and application of theory in business 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 considering global tendencies for digitalization of business activities. 

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

The module is delivered based on 1 hour 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 thei r supervisors.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 1
Seminars 2 4
Guided independent study:      
    Preparation of practical report 10
    Carry-out research project 183
Total hours by term 11 2 187
Total hours for module 200

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Dissertation 100

Summative assessment- Examinations:


Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

The dissertation word limit is 8,000 words. This includes the reference list but does not include the appendix if there are any. No excess will be read. Submission for this will be in early September in the same year.

Formative assessment methods:

Students are required to provide drafts 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:

The below information applies to students on taught programmes except those on Postgraduate Flexible programmes. Penalties for late submission, and the associated procedures, which apply to Postgraduate Flexible programmes are specified in the policy “Penalties for late submission for Postgraduate Flexible programmes”, which can be found here:
The Support Centres will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.
The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

Assessment requirements for a pass:

A mark of 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):

Last updated: 9 August 2023


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