AHME03-Research Methods

Module Provider: Leadership, Organisations and Behaviour
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring / Summer module
Non-modular pre-requisites: ICSC(L)
Co-requisites: AHME01 Contemporary British Foreign Policy: Issues themes and challenges and AHME02 Neuroscience and Psychology for Behavioural Change
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2020/1

Module Convenor: Dr Lynn Thurloway

Email: lynn.thurloway@henley.ac.uk

Type of module:

AHEP online module

Summary module description:


This module is run jointly by LOB and SPEIR.

The SPEIR Module Convenor is Dr Joseph O'Mahoney (j.p.a.omahoney@reading.ac.uk)    

This module equips Student Officers with the learning tools for understanding the ingredients of good research, for successfully choosing, designing and developing their own research projects, for improving performance in other elements of AHEP and subsequent professional training, and for critical thinking throughout their careers. 


  • Develop understanding of the research process and principles of good research design, building on study skills developed on the Intermediate Command and Staff Course (Land) at Shrivenham.  

  • Familiarize students with a range of research methods used in the study of leadership, strategy, and international relations; 

  • Develop students’ understanding of how they might apply these methods in their own research projects; 

  • Equip students to make clear and well-informed choices in defining, designing and developing their own research projects; 

  • Enhance students’ critical thinking and awareness of the use and limitations of evidence; 

  • Improve students’ ability to understand and critically assess arguments made in the academic literature, in public policy, and in their own workplaces. 

Assessable learning outcomes:

Student Officers will assimilate the key skills required to undertake research which would fulfil a number of requirements.  These may be to undertake module assessments, or later to complete their Negotiated Learning Module. 

A mix of assessable activities covering topics relating to work in Leadership and Organisational Behaviour, or Politics and International Relations will be undertaken.  These are to test the understanding of differe nt forms of research which are carried out with different outcomes in mind.  

The summation of the learning will allow the Student Officer  to articulate a proposal to carry out a piece of original research in a nominated topic.  The skills required to identify this topic, understand the background and previous research underpinning the topic, ways of assimilating knowledge and/or collecting data and the analysis and interpretation of that k nowledge or findings will be covered.  

Additional outcomes:

Student Officers will be able to apply this learning to improve their submissions for assessment of modules during the AHEP degree process.  

Outline content:

The module comprises two main parts; the first of which familiarises you with the research methods approach and processes utilised when undertaking research in Strategy/Politics and International Relations and the second part fulfils similar objectives for research in Leadership and related topics.  


Section 0 – Joint Introduction 

Section 1 – Introduction to Research Methods in International Relatio ns and Strategic Studies 

Section 2 – Research design in International Relations and Strategic Studies 

Section 3 – Qualitative methods in International Relations and Strategic Studies 

Section 4 – Quantitative methods in International Relations and Strategic Studies 

Section 5 – Bringing it all together in International Relations and Strategic Studies  

Section 6 - Introduction to Research Methods in Leadership 

Section 7 - Research design in Leadership 

Section 8 - Qualitative Methods in Leadership 

Section 9 - Quantitative Methods in Leadership 

Section 10 – Bringing it all together in Leadership 

Global context:

The context of this module is the British Army. The scope of the Army is a global one and, therefore, elements of international leadership, global cultures, international relations and the home and foreign political environments are taken into account.  

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

All learning for this module is via on-line courses.  There are also, discussion forums, an e-portfolio (The Professional Leadership Portfolio, or PLP) for reflection and as a repository of ideas, and formative assessments embedded into the module content.  

There is no face-to-face contact in this module as all content is taught online.  There is an expectation of approximately 60 hours spent studying the on-line content and& nbsp;140 hours of self-directed learning, including directed reading and preparing the Research Outline. 

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Total hours by term
Total hours for module 200

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 50
Set exercise 50

Summative assessment- Examinations:

No examination 

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

3 elements: 

  1. A mix of exercises and reflective tasks on the LOB/Leadership material, counting for 25% 

  1. A mix of exercises and reflective tasks on the SPEIR/Strategy & IR material, counting for 25% 

  1. A research proposal (c.2000 words) on EITHER LOB/Leadership OR SPEIR/Strategy & IR tracks, counting for 50%.  To include (not exhaustive): 

  • Identification of a research problem/area within EITHER Leadership OR Strategy/IR 

  • Choice between dissertation and work-based project  

  • Formulation of an explicit research question and identification of research objectives 

  • Identification of relevant literature 

Formative assessment methods:

  • Discussion forums 

  • In module tests and exercises 

  • Reflection and self-guided notetaking in the PLP 

Penalties for late submission:

Penalties for late submission on this module are in accordance with the arrangements as laid out in the programme guide. 

Assessment requirements for a pass:

Module pass mark of 50%  

Reassessment arrangements:

These are in accordance with the arrangements for resubmission as laid out in the programme guide.  

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):


Last updated: 4 April 2020


Things to do now