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2019/20 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

LUBS2415 Research Methods in International Business

20 creditsClass Size: 155

Module manager: Emma Liu

Taught: Semesters 1 & 2 View Timetable

Year running 2019/20

Module replaces

LUBS2875 Research Methods in International Business

This module is not approved as a discovery module

Module summary

This module explains the principles underlying the scientific discovery of new ideas, theories and empirical relationships in the field of International Business. It gives students of International Business a toolkit for recognising good quality research (the ability to criticise research) and understanding where to start in conducting their own research. It provides them with an understanding of different research philosophies, and a knowledge of how to apply these in designing the research that forms the basis of their undergraduate dissertations.


This module aims to give learners a sound grounding in research methods at a level sufficient to enable their undertaking of a research project to meet the requirements of the International Business Dissertation (LUBS3321) module, within the Programme.

Learning outcomes
Learning Outcomes - Knowledge / Application

On successful completion of this module students will be able to identify and explain:
- The concept of the scientific method
- The principles of epistemology
- The debate between different "world views" in the conduct of scientific discovery , and why these differences exist
- The logic underpinning the identification of a research question, and to design a piece of research

Learning Outcome - Skills
- critical thinking and a critical awareness of alternative research methods
- research skills for the world of work beyond the academic environment
- the ability to design a research project and write a research proposal- the ability to locate relevant literature for a project
- the ability to evaluate research strategies, data collection methods and data analysis methods in the context of a particular project

Skills outcomes
Subject Specific:
- ability to critically assess the academic literature for original ideas and findings that forms the theoretical and empirical core of the Programme.
- be able to identify the strengths and shortcomings of the scientific basis of knowledge in International Business and its supporting disciplines
- the critical analysis of research (e.g., journal articles) which over-claim or have weak research methods


Indicative content:
1. Introduction to BSc Dissertation and International Business as a research field;
2. Reviewing the literature & conceptual framework;
3. Systematic reviews and meta-reviews;
4. Problematization, the research question, design & choice of method;
5. Advanced library training;
6. Primary data and its collection I - Interviews;
7. Primary data and its collection II - observation and experimentation;
8. Primary data and its collection III - the case study;
9. Primary data and its collection IV - surveys & questionnaires;
10. Secondary data and its collection I - official and non-official data;
11. Qualitative analysis and its applications;
12. Quantitative analysis and its applications;
13. BSc dissertation Rationale

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours168.00
Total Contact hours32.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

Readings prior to and following each lecture, preparation for seminars and two written assignments at the end of each semester.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Students' progress will be monitored through class discussion in the tutorials. During these sessions students will be expected to apply the theoretical knowledge gained during lectures and their private study to answering tutorial questions.

Students will be given feedback on their responses by the lecturer during the class and they will also be provided with suggested responses to the tutorial questions in written-form (or on Minerva: the VLE and Portal) after the class has finished.

Students will have the opportunity to discuss draft research proposals with module staff to identify areas of problematic understanding to enable them to prepare for the assessments.

The marks and feedback from this in conjunction with class discussions during the module will enable student to gauge progress during the course of the module prior to the assessments.

Students can also obtain feedback on a one-to-one basis from the module manager and lecturers outside the class setting.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay1,500 word essay50.00
Essay2,000 word essay50.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

The resit for this module is by failed element. If a student were to fail, they would re-sit the ACW assignment that they had failed (either the Semester 1 50% or Semester 2 50% assignment) and the mark they receive will constitute 100% of the re-sit mark. If a student were to fail both ACW assignments, they would re-sit both assignments (as separate submissions) and the capped re-sit mark they receive will be calculated over both assignments.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 09/09/2019


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