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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Health in Social Science : Clinical Psychology

Postgraduate Course: Dissertation (MSc Psychological Therapies) (CLPS11076)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Health in Social Science CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate)
Course typeDissertation AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits60 ECTS Credits30
SummaryThis core course within the MSc Psychological Therapies programme provides students with the opportunity to design, conduct, analyse and present a research project. This course provides students with the opportunity to work individually, in pairs, or small groups on a research project of their choice and to design and conduct a research project, then write up individually for submission. The project should be designed to inform or in some way relate to the improvement of what is known about effective psychological therapies. This may include but is not limited to a systematic review, meta-analysis, needs analysis, service evaluation or feasible aspects of a treatment study.
This course affords students the opportunity to gain skills in research, including developing a rationale, conducting a feasible research study or systematic review and presenting the results of research in an appropriate format.
Course description The dissertation may take the form of an empirical project (qualitative or quantitative; data may be primary or secondary), systematic review or meta-analysis. Students will, where possible, be encouraged to work in pairs or small groups, which will provide an additional element of peer learning and social support. Working in pairs or small groups will also allow students to engage in larger-scale projects, some of which may be publication-worthy. However, all students will submit independent dissertations for assessment.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed:
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements It is strongly recommended that students have taken CLPS11066: Research Methods in Applied Psychology (20 credits) before enrolling on the dissertation course. Students should discuss this with the MSc Psychological Therapies Programme Director
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2018/19, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  None
Course Start Full Year
Course Start Date 17/09/2018
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 600 ( Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 12, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 588 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Journal article-style dissertation (90%)
Conference-style poster (10%)

1) A journal article of 7,000 to 8,000 words (without +10% leeway). Students should decide on a relevant journal in discussion with their supervisor. Students should follow journal guidelines on style and format but disregard journal word count.
2) A conference-style poster with a maximum of 1000 words. Posters should indicate the rationale for the study, study aims, methods, results and a brief discussion or highlights of the findings.
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate extensive, detailed and critical knowledge and understanding of contemporary literature to support a rational justification for the study.
  2. Implement a viable research project that can demonstrate logical links between research questions, design and (primary/secondary) data collection.
  3. Demonstrate competence in collating/analyzing data and providing a critical and contextual interpretation of findings.
  4. Demonstrate the ability to communicate appropriately and succinctly to a target audience, using appropriate language.
  5. Exercise substantial autonomy and initiative in undertaking research, including time and project management skills.
Reading List
Readings related to the research topic will be recommended by supervisor.

Systematic review
Boland, A. Cherry, M.G. & Dickson, R. (2014). Doing a systematic review. A student┐s guide. London: Sage Publishing Ltd.

Quantitative projects
Field, A. (2013). Discovering Statistics Using IBM SPSS Statistics. London: Sage Publishing Ltd.
Field, A., & Hole, G. (2003). How to design and report experiments. Thousand Oaks: Sage.
Greene, J. & D┐Oliveira, M. (2009). Learning to use statistical tests in psychology. Maidenhead, Berkshire: OUP
Pallant, J. (2016). SPSS Survival Manual. Maidenhead, Berkshire: OUP

Qualitative projects
Silverman, D. (2013). Doing Qualitative Research. A Practical Handbook. London: Sage Publications Ltd.
Sternberg, R.J. (2003). The Psychologist's companion: a guide to scientific writing for students and researchers (4th ed). Cambridge:
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Development of extensive, detailed and critical knowledge and understanding in one or more specialisms, much of which is at, or informed by, developments at the forefront
Plan and execute a significant project of research, investigation or development
Critically review, consolidate and extend knowledge, skills practices and thinking in a subject/discipline
Undertake critical evaluations of a wide range of numerical and graphical data
Communicate, using appropriate methods, to a range of audiences with different levels of knowledge/expertise.
Personal and intellectual autonomy skills, including accountability, time-management and working with others
KeywordsDissertation,children,young people,mental health,psychological therapies
Course organiserDr Corinne Reid
Tel: (0131 6)50 4270
Course secretaryMrs Clara Shaw
Tel: (0131 6)50 3037
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