Course modules

Module information for Psychology, MSc (Conversion Degree) [Year 1]

MSc Psychology Project

Module summary

Module code: PSYC1165
Level: 7
Credits: 60
School: Education, Health and Human Sci
Department: Human Sciences
Module Coordinator(s): Emma O'Dwyer



To further students’ understanding of a particular aspect of psychology. To enable students to plan, conduct, and evaluate an empirical piece of research in psychology. To enable students to review and reflect on the existing literature in a particular area of psychology in a manner consistent with professional and academic practice. To enable students to develop professional presentation skills.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student will be able to:

1. Critically analyse the research evidence and theory in their area of choice.
2. Plan, design, conduct, and evaluate research on a topic of their choice.
3. Show a good awareness of ethical issues involved in psychological research.
4. Analyse the results of their study and interpret them in relation to the existing body of literature.
5. Discuss the implications of their findings, in particular for practice, and future directions for this research area.
6. Demonstrate skills in disseminating research in a professional manner.

Indicative content

The MSc dissertation is a scientific work based on a self-selected area of specialisation within the students’ respective programme of study. Students will be required to deliver an individual body of research. This will be based on a thorough literature review and will usually require the collection of empirical data. The MSc dissertation will require students to apply existing models or theories to a target population or context not yet investigated or to answer a new research question, and they will present their own or existing data from an ongoing research project. Students will be required to produce a scientific piece of work that demonstrates critical considerations and analytical skills for the research methodology and the methods of data collection and analysis chosen as well as appropriate ethical considerations. Examples of empirical works can be comparative studies, intervention studies or exploratory studies.

Teaching and learning activity

In meetings, students will be instructed in the processes and documents involved in the project module. Individual tutorials will be held with project supervisors and students will work independently across the year. Students will be expected to produce a research proposal outlining the rationale for their project as well as the methods and analyses to be employed. They will also apply for ethical approval for their proposed project and orally present their research.


Presentation - 10%
LO - 1, 2, 3, 5, 6.
Pass mark - 50%
Students will be required to present their research online to their supervisor and one other member of the academic staff. They will be assessed on the quality of the presentation and their responses to questions about it. Normally, the presentation will be no longer than 20 minutes. Full details of the length and requirements of the presentation are provided in the Assessment Specification.

Project Report - 90%
LO - 1-6.
Pass mark - 50%
12,000 to 15,000.
Students submit a report of their empirical project in a journal article style including their approved ethics application.

Nature of FORMATIVE assessment supporting student learning:
- Through discussions with their supervisor and through research methods training.
- The research presentation will provide students with the opportunity to get further feedback on their project from other academics prior to the final project write-up.
Project Report:
- Supervisor interaction (e.g., feedback on research question, design and methods, as well as on ethical approval application) provides formative assessment throughout the module.
- All students must obtain ethical approval and receive feedback from an independent reviewer on their application that must include the project outline.
- The Summer Timeframe is a time management tool to assist with planning the progress of the research project. It is to be submitted after the presentation session and provides opportunities to obtain feedback from the supervisor on progress and planning of the last stages before the summer period.
- Feedback from supervisor on Draft submission (with the exclusion of the Discussion section) prior to the submission of the Project Report.