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2023/24 Taught Postgraduate Module Catalogue

GEOG5013M Dissertation (GISc)

60 creditsClass Size: 40

Module manager: Luke Burns

Taught: Semesters 1 & 2 (Sep to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2023/24

Pre-requisite qualifications

Students will normally have completed the PGCert and PGDip years of the programme before attempting this module.

This module is mutually exclusive with

GEOG5160MDissertation (GIScience)
GEOG5221MDissertation (WUN)

This module is not approved as an Elective

Module summary

This dissertation module provides an opportunity to develop an individual programme of research over a nine-month period. Students may decide to expand on work/ideas covered as part of their programme or to select a new issue to explore. Students will work closely under the guidance of an allocated supervisor and are expected to complete an independent piece of academic work.


On completion of this module, students should be able to:

1. Produce a concise oral research proposal for a project that aims to effectively contribute to the academic literature.
2. Critically evaluate and synthesise literature.
3. Critically evaluate research methods and results.
4. Present scientific results in a professionally competent manner.

Learning outcomes
On completion of the module students should be able to demonstrate the ability to:

1. Execute a sustained programme of original research or development;
2. Identify and critically review the literature relevant to the chosen topic;
3. Identify and apply appropriate conceptual understanding and practical research skills necessary for the thorough and coherent exploration of their chosen topic;
4. Locate their own original investigations within the wider current developments.


Students follow an individual programme of original research or development under the guidance of a staff member appointed as their supervisor. Progress check-points (research rationale, literature scoping and research design) will be put in place in collaboration with the supervisor to ensure the student remains on track.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Individual Support101.0010.00
Independent online learning hours2.00
Private study hours588.00
Total Contact hours10.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)600.00

Private study

Private study relates to independent wider reading, independent practical work (e.g. fieldwork if appropriate) and researching/undertaking the dissertation and related tasks.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Formative feedback will be provided via:
1. Feedback on 1-2 page interim report submissions (research rationale, literature scoping and research design), likely in both written and oral format. Timings to be agreed between the student and supervisor.
2. The module leader will also provide more general support via email and Skype/Collaborate Ultra/Microsoft Teams during the learning stages, in advance and prior to assessment, as required.
3. Discussion boards will be monitored and students encouraged to post questions, comments regarding the research process etc. For this module, the discussion boards are important to develop a sense of community and promote peer support. Allocated supervisors will also be on hand to support students on subject-matter queries.

Note that students will have undertaken training on the research process (research rationale, literature scoping and research design) earlier in the programme through the module GEOG5004: Professional and Personal Development. This is designed to ensure readiness for undertaking an independent research project.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
ReportReport (10,000 words)90.00
PresentationRecorded 10-minute proposal video, Inc slides (or equivalent)10.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

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

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 28/04/2023 14:56:06


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