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2021/22 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

PSYC2523 Research Skills 4

15 creditsClass Size: 290

Module manager: Dr Gina Koutsopoulou

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2021/22

Pre-requisite qualifications

Successful completion of all pass for progression modules in Level 1 of: BSc Psychology or MPsyc, BSc Advanced Psychology, or BSs Psychology with Education


PSYC1036Research Skills 1
PSYC1037Research Skills 2


PSYC2522Research Skills 3

This module is mutually exclusive with

PSYC3423Intercalated programme: Research Skills 4

Module replaces

PSYC2520; Research Skills 3 Conceptual and Applied Issues (part of)

This module is not approved as a discovery module

Module summary

A course on more advanced research methods and statistics, through a series of lectures running in parallel with two linked laboratory-based practicals.


The two practicals are designed to develop students' skills in identifying research questions, designing experiments, conducting experiments, analysing data, and writing reports. The two will cover two key areas of psychology: correlation & regression in psychology and psychometrics/questionnaire design methods. They will build on the practicals at Level 1 (Research Skills 1 & 2) and Research Skills 3 in semester 1 of the second year, to prepare students for the major project they will complete in their final year. A lecture at the start of the semester "Developing ideas for research" will prepare students for selecting the topic(s) for their Major Project at Level 3 which is selected later in semester 2 of Level 2.

A series of lectures on statistics and research methods build on material covered in Level 1 and on the Research Skills 3 module of Level 2 semester 1. This includes coverage of more advanced correlational techniques, multiple regression, psychometric testing, factor analysis and a brief introduction to meta-analysis.

On completion of this module, students should:

1) Have developed their research skills relating to the generation of hypotheses and the development of research designs.
2) Have developed skills in the conduct of psychology experiments in a range of research contexts.
3) Be able to identify and apply appropriate core statistical techniques for the analysis of psychological data.
4) Have further developed their skills in critical evaluation and report writing.
5) Have developed skills required for the major project they will complete in their final year.

Learning outcomes
From this module students will develop a critical understanding of:

1) theoretical, ethical, and practical issues concerned in the design and conduct of psychology experiments.
2) the application of statistical methods for the analysis of experimental data.
3) approaches to the study of human behaviour, and personality, including psychological scales.

Skills outcomes
Literature searches, report writing, understanding of experimental design and analyses along with the critical view brought by quantitative and qualitative research.


This module has two related components: 1) The two practicals; 2) a series of 10 lectures on research methods & statistics

Each practical, taken by all students at Level 2, will be completed over a five week period - with students required to submit a report of their work in the sixth week for assessment.

The lectures will build on Level 1 research methods and statistics, and on Research Skills 3 in semester 1 of Level 2 and cover: developing ideas for research; correlational techniques, multiple regression, introduction to psychometric testing, sampling and population surveys, reliability and validity in psychological scales, item analysis in questionnaire design, factor analysis, and introduction to more advanced techniques (power analysis and meta-analysis).

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours120.00
Total Contact hours30.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)150.00

Private study

Essential reading for statistics lectures: 10 x 2.5 hours
Statistics and research methods revision: 10 x 2.5 hours
Independent small group practical work: 3 x 10 hours
Report writing for practicals: 2 x 20 hours

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Progress during each practical will be monitored by the staff who will be meeting with the students in both large and smaller groups (appropriate to each practical design). More generally, the spread of assessment points across the two semesters will facilitate monitoring of student progress and intervention if necessary. As students must pass all components of the module, a failure of any of the practicals would lead to an alternative assignment being given, and the student's personal tutor would also be notified - so that future progress could be monitored. Personal tutors will have the opportunity to discuss Semester 1 performance in their individual meetings with tutees at the beginning of Semester 2. Key will be feedback provided in written form on each of the practical reports: such feedback is both on the script itself and on new forms which break down each section of the report for detailed grade-specific feedback.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Practical ReportReport 135.00
Practical ReportReport 235.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)70.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Exam typeExam duration% of formal assessment
Online Time-Limited assessment1 hr 00 mins30.00
Total percentage (Assessment Exams)30.00

As the two main assessments (practical reports and examination) relate to distinct components of the module students will be required to pass both elements.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 30/06/2021 15:21:45


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