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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Moray House School of Education and Sport : Education

Undergraduate Course: Honours Dissertation Project (EDUA10211)

Course Outline
SchoolMoray House School of Education and Sport CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate)
Course typeDissertation AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits40 ECTS Credits20
SummaryThe Honours Dissertation Project is an extended piece of academic work where the student engages with the professional practice sector through conceiving, planning and implementing a critical and topical investigation focused on a contemporary issue of concern. This course requires and supports the student to work independently with guidance from an allocated supervisor. Students will be responsible for selection of the topic for investigation, research design, data collection, data analysis and presentation of findings. The student can select from a range of options in terms of the mode of enquiry, framework for analysis and presentation of the findings. Common to the range of approaches is the need for the student to evidence in-depth analysis, demonstrate autonomous and critical action, professional relevance of the study and knowledge of relevant research and enquiry approaches. Knowledge and understanding of the theoretical ideas informing the project should be clear and application to the investigation will be contextually relevant.
Course description 1) Academic Description
The Honours Dissertation Project is a major project driven by independent study that will provide students with the opportunity to identify, reflect on and explore a topical issue that has significant implications for the contemporary CLD professional practice sector. The project is the culmination of the programme of study and as such provides a platform for students to draw upon their learning across the previous 3 years and apply gained knowledge and experience to a planned, systematic and critical investigation.

2) Indicative Content
The Honours Dissertation Project presents the student with a range of options related to the mode of study and style of presentation. The selected project will be presented in an academic style and will be 8000 words in length. The range of Dissertation options include:
· A review of literature focused on a topical and relevant issue pertaining to the CLD professional practice sector.
· Submission of a written dissertation which presents, analyses and critically discusses the findings of a small-scale research project undertaken by the student in a relevant community setting.
· Develop and present a CLD Practice Manifesto which engages with a topical issue or problem for the professional sector and outlines a proposed response that considers ideological, theoretical and practice implications.

3) Learning Experience
Supported by 4 hours of introductory seminars and 6 hours of supervision, the student will work independently. The Dissertation relies on good research, analytical and writing skills. Through active engagement with existing literature and research evidence the student will develop base knowledge and understanding of the topic area. This is enhanced through their own research and scholarship.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Develop and undertake an enquiry orientated towards a topical professional concern.
  2. Appraise the policy implications, values and assumptions that underlie the issues under investigation and how these inform the mode of enquiry.
  3. Engage in the critical appraisal and demonstrate knowledge of relevant source literature and existing research evidence
  4. Independently research an aspect of practice relevant to the broad professional discipline of community learning and development (CLD).
  5. Demonstrate the ability to present a scholarly, sustained, analytical and robust argument that presents evidenced gleaned from the investigation whilst acknowledging significant implications for CLD practice
Reading List
Evans, K. (2013) Pathways Through Writing Blocks in the Academic Environment. Rotterdam: Sense Publishers. (electronic resource)

Greetham, B. (2019) How to write your undergraduate Dissertation (3rd Ed.) . London: Springer Nature Limited. (electronic resource)

Smith, S., Todd, M. & Waldman, J. (2009) Doing Your Undergraduate Social Science Dissertation: A Practical Guide for Undergraduates. London: Routledge. (electronic resource)

Walliman, N (2014) Your Undergraduate Dissertation: The essential guide for success. London; Sage (electronic resource)

Tucker, A. & Chafe, P. (2018) Write Here, Right Now: An Interactive Introduction to Academic Writing and Research. Available at

Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills 1) Apply Knowledge Skills and Understanding
· Apply research skills to investigate a topical practice issue
· Planning, development and implementation of a time-limited project.
· Analytical and critical thinking applied to research data and related evidence and literature.
· Academic writing and presentation skills.

2) Generic Cognitive Skills
· Contextual understanding of the professional practice sector
· Literature search and review around a selected topic
· Knowledge and understanding of the methodological, epistemological and ontological aspects of social research

3) Autonomy, Accountability and Working With Others
· Ability to work autonomously and independently
· Develop collaborative working relationship with supervisor and relevant community and practice stakeholders
· Manage and report on original empirical data
KeywordsDissertation,social research,critical analysis
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