Undergraduate Course: Understanding and Investigation: Methods for Health Research (SHSS10004)
|School||School of Health in Social Science
||College||College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
|Credit level (Normal year taken)||SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate)
||Availability||Not available to visiting students
|Summary||This is a compulsory course for students in the third year of the MA Health, Science and Society. It aims to develop students' understanding of knowledge production and enhance ability to engage critically with published research. It offers a solid grounding in research methods and practical skills that will support this development in year three while also preparing students for undertaking their honours dissertation in year four.
The course is taught through lectures and group work and has a focus on research related to the field of health. Students are also required to carry out self-directed learning.
This course will offer year three students the opportunity to develop understanding of the nature of knowledge production, and a solid grounding in social science research methods. The focus will be on challenges and developments in the field of health research, and will explore issues of research design, ethical practice, concepts of rigour, choice of methods, and data analysis.
The course will develop practical research skills, and will include an orientation to learning while doing. Students will have the opportunity to engage with a variety of methods such as techniques involving surveys, interviews, and observation. Students will be encouraged to reflect on the process of research and its outcomes, including their position as the researcher.
The understanding and skills acquired will be relevant to honours dissertation projects, and to many potential career pathways.
The course will be taught through seminars and practical workshops.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
||Other requirements|| None
Course Delivery Information
|Academic year 2022/23, Available to all students (SV1)
|Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info)
Lecture Hours 20,
Supervised Practical/Workshop/Studio Hours 5,
Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4,
Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours
|Assessment (Further Info)
|Additional Information (Assessment)
||There are two units of summative assessment on this course:
Unit 1: Group presentation (20%)
Unit 2: Research proposal (80%; 3,000 - 3,500 words)
||As part of the formative assessment, feedback will be provided on each student's plan of the research proposal.
|No Exam Information
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
- Understand principles and approaches to social research, and have the ability to compare and evaluate different methodological approaches. Students will be introduced to a range of research methods employed in researching health.
- Compare and critically assess research findings, and make judgments on research quality and validity.
- Refine a research topic and design their own research project and methodology.
- Develop ethical awareness and the ability to prepare for ethical issues that may arise in conducting research.
- Develop a critical understanding of the role of the researcher within the research process.
|Balnaves, Mark and Peter Caputi (2001). Introduction to Quantitative Research Methods: An investigative approach. Sage Books|
Blaxter, L. (2010). How to Research. (4th ed.) McGraw-Hill Education.
Flick, Uwe. (2011) Introducing Research Methodology: A beginner's guide to doing a research project. Sage Books.
Liamputtong, Pranee. (1999). Qualitative research methods: a health focus. Oxford University Press.
Loseke, Donileen. (2013) Methodological Thinking: Basic Principles of Social Research Design. Sage Books.
Saks, Mike and Judith Allsop (2013). Researching Health: Qualitative, Quantitative and Mixed Methods. Sage Books
Silverman, David (2010). Doing Qualitative Research: a practical handbook. Sage Books.
|Graduate Attributes and Skills
||Understand social research methods and their use in developing knowledge and practice
Development of key practical skills: information retrieval and critical synthesis, project planning, formulating a research proposal
Analytical and critical thinking
|Keywords||Research Design,Research Methods,Research Ethics,Rigour
|Course organiser||Dr Sally Brown
Tel: (0131 6)51 3969
|Course secretary||Miss Morven Sutherland
Tel: (0131 6)51 3972