CHE-40032 - Research Skills for Analytical Science
Coordinator: David F Thompson Tel: +44 1782 7 34954
Lecture Time: See Timetable...
Level: Level 7
Credits: 15
Study Hours: 150
School Office: 01782 734921

Programme/Approved Electives for 2021/22


Available as a Free Standing Elective






Barred Combinations


Description for 2021/22

This module is designed to give an individual all of the required information and skills needed to become an effective researcher within an academic or commercial environment. The content will include how to effectively literature search a new research field, identify gaps within it and how to turn these into a research project. Guidance will be given on how to resource a research project correctly and what personal skills will be required by the researcher. Finally, how to communicate results to a wide variety of audiences will be covered. The assessment for this module is designed to reflect activities that an active researcher will carry out as part of their working life so it will make the transition from study to work that much easier.

This module aims to:
Introduce students to a variety of research activities and associated issues such as funding their research and budgeting.
Enable the student to critically evaluate the need for ethical approval based on the their project proposal.
Enhance the student's science communication skills in areas such as presenting at conferences, academic writing and presenting to a general audience.
Equip students with the skills necessary to develop their personal research skills.
Develop individual understanding and handling of scientific literature relevant to their chosen research area and introduce the processes of research planning through the development of a detailed research proposal.
Enable students to carry out a variety of science communication activities and to select appropriate means for specific audiences.

Talis Aspire Reading List
Any reading lists will be provided by the start of the course.

Intended Learning Outcomes

critically evaluate the research field relating to their particular project area based on the current scientific literature: 1,2
formulate a suitable project plan based on the specific research question and access to specialist equipment and facilities: 1,2
evaluate the funding environment for research in the UK and how to cost a single person research project: 2
critically evaluate their project plan for any ethical issues based on current guidelines and recommendations: 1,2
evaluate their personal skill set and identify any skills deficit based on the Vitae Researcher Development Framework: 1,2
evaluate the potential impact of the proposed research and identify any key beneficiaries: 2,3
critically analyse complex data sets and derive meaningful conclusions from them: 1,3
communicate complex, analytically derived, information to specialised and non-specialised audiences: 1,2,3
identify and evaluate the key aspects of the research field that are under-developed and formulate a research question: 1,2

Study hours

Module induction - 1 hours
Lectures/workshops - 20 hours
Literature review - 52
Research funding application - 39
Academic paper data analysis exercise - 28 hours
Poster presentation - 10 hours

School Rules


Description of Module Assessment

1: Literature Review weighted 40%
Literature Review
This 2500 word literature review will identify the key research question that will be investigated in the project side of this programme. It will provide the student with a background to the project area and will enable the student to understand where their research fits into the wider field. The student will identify the key aims of their project work in this piece of assessment based on the current research already carried out. This work would be similar to a feasibility study that would be carried out in an industrial setting.

2: Assignment weighted 30%
Funding Application
This assessment will focus on the financial aspects of the research and identification of key beneficiaries. The potential impact of the research will also be identified. This assessment will take the form of a funding application, equivalent to 2000 words, based on the style of a Research Council studentship application.

3: Poster Presentation weighted 30%
Data Analysis Exercise
In this exercise the student will be required to analyse data from a peer-reviewed paper and present it in the form of a layman poster. That will include a reflection on how this poster might differ to a scientific poster.