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2023/24 Taught Postgraduate Module Catalogue

ODES5110M Design and Research

15 creditsClass Size: 150

Module manager: Dr Yuchan Zhang

Taught: 1 Mar to 30 Apr, 1 Mar to 30 Apr (2mth)(adv yr), 1 Sep to 31 Oct, 1 Sep to 31 Oct (adv yr) View Timetable

Year running 2023/24

Pre-requisite qualifications

Students are required to meet the programme entry requirements prior to studying the module.

Module replaces


This module is not approved as an Elective

Module summary

This module will introduce the fundamental knowledge of what research is and what research could be done in, with and for design. Through literature and case studies, students will explore and investigate the processes and methods to successfully research digital design and communication-related issues. By completing this module, students will establish an awareness of using research to develop, enhance and evaluate effective design solutions.


This module gives students the opportunity to:

1. Acquire and develop the key competencies necessary to be a critical reader of published research.
2. Understand the nature of research and research methods.
3. Generate awareness of using research in digital design and communication.

Learning outcomes
On completion of this module, students will have provided evidence of being able to:

1. Examine and evaluate reliable literature in the area of design effectively and critically.
2. Demonstrate the ability to explore current research issues and challenges in digital design and communication.
3. Demonstrate an awareness of using research to develop, enhance and evaluate effectiveness in the delivery of design solutions.


Indicative content for this module includes:

1. What is research
2. Design research
3. Using literature
4. Research process
5. Planning research
6. Research methods

Through examining literature and case studies, students will analyse design research examples to discover current issues and common research methods in digital design and communication.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
On-line Learning61.006.00
Discussion forum62.0012.00
Independent online learning hours12.00
Private study hours120.00
Total Contact hours18.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)150.00

Private study

Independent online learning (12 hours):
Online learning materials provide links to appropriate journal papers, books, videos and websites. Students need to plan their own time to study these instructional and supporting materials independently before and after synchronised sessions.

To gain confidence to develop and articulate their own ideas, students will engage in private study (120 hours):
- Literature search and reading: 42 hours
- Preparation and evaluation of assessed work: 78 hours

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Online learning materials will provide regular opportunity for students to check their understanding (for example through formative MCQs with automated feedback). Regular group activity embedded into learning will allow self and peer assessment providing opportunities for formative feedback from peers and tutor.

The individual unit webinars and discussion forums provide opportunities for formative feedback from peers and tutors.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay1,500-2,000 words70.00
Literature Review600-900 words or equivalent (i.e audio podcast)30.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

1. Literature review: 600-900 words, a critical discussion of peer-reviewed articles 2. Essay: 1,500-2,000 words, an evaluation of common research methods in design

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 10/08/2023


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