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

Postgraduate Course: MSc by Research in Clinical Psychology Dissertation (CLPS11047)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Health in Social Science CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate)
Course typeDissertation AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits180 ECTS Credits90
SummaryStudents will produce a 30,000 word dissertation on a topic agreed with the supervisor(s), to be submitted within one-year of registration full-time or two years part-time. The dissertation will normally consist of a piece of empirical work related to clinical or health psychology, through analysis of large existing datasets, and meta-analysis can also be carried out by agreement with the supervisor(s). The dissertation is expected to provide a critical review of the relevant literature, in addition to the completion of an innovative piece of empirical work, which will be analysed using appropriate quantitative or qualitative methods. Each student will be allocated one (occasionally two, depending on the nature of the project) research supervisors at the start of registration.
Course description The aim of the course is to develop research skills through independent work, while under supervision. The students on this programme are therefore postgraduate research students based in the School alongside the PhD students. There are no taught components to the programme, but students can choose to take research methods courses that are relevant to their projects. Students are expected to meet regularly with supervisors, at least three times over the period of study, and we ask that students complete a supervision agreement form and keep a record of all supervision meetings. Each student's project is different, however there are some shared milestones. To ensure that students develop an understanding of the research literature in the area and start writing their thesis as soon as possible, we require them to submit a literature review to supervisor/s by the end of February. Students are also required to design and present a poster at the School's PGR conference, held each spring. The MSc by Research thesis should be submitted in August. Students can email a PDF version of their dissertation to the College PGR Student Office or they can share it via OneDrive or Dropbox. The expected number of hours of study is 1800 across the year. This is allocated as follows: Dissertation/Project Supervision Hours 20, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 36, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 1744.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2019/20, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  None
Course Start Flexible
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 1800 ( Dissertation/Project Supervision Hours 20, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 36, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 1744 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) 30,000 word dissertation
Feedback Formative feedback will be given by student's dissertation supervisor throughout the dissertation process.

Summative feedback will be given on the dissertation after dissertation marks have been ratified at the exam board.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Develop their research skills in an area relevant to clinical psychology under appropriate supervision.
  2. Develop critical skills for review of literature.
  3. Develop either appropriate quantitative statistics skills or qualitative skills as appropriate to the research topic under consideration.
  4. Develop their written and communication skills in the presentation of a 30,000 word thesis.
Reading List
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills On completion of the programme we expect students to have developed a sound knowledge of the specific area of psychology that their project relates to, including an understanding of the main principles, theories and terminology and the current debates within the field. Our graduates would also be able to apply this knowledge and understanding to the development of a relevant research question and testing this through a novel research project with appropriate methodology. The students should also have developed skills in taking accurate and useful meeting notes. Our graduates are able to critically analyse their own work and the work of others, recognising strengths and limitations and ways to improve and develop research in the field of study. They are able to respond well to supervisory feedback and incorporate the advice of others into their work, while maintaining ownership of the project. Through integration with other research students and staff, and presentation at the postgraduate conference, our students are able to communicate research findings to peers and staff members from their own discipline, but also other disciplines within our School. In addition, they are able to engage in critical conversations around peers' research projects. On a practical level, our graduates will have honed their abilities to conduct quantitative (e.g. through use of SPSS) or qualitative analysis and interpret their findings, with consideration to their contribution to the wider literature. Whether the project involves collecting data or analysis of pre-existing data, all our graduates will have gained experience in considering the ethical issues arising from a project, ensuring that ethical approval is granted and ethical standards adhered to and maintained.
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Helen Sharpe
Tel: (0131 6)51 3982
Course secretaryMrs Alison Grahamslaw
Tel: (0131 6)50 4277
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