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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Moray House School of Education and Sport : Research (EDU)

Postgraduate Course: Conceptualising research: Foundations, assumptions and praxis (REDU11045)

Course Outline
SchoolMoray House School of Education and Sport CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryThis course builds and complements the earlier research course looking in more depth at issues concerning the conceptualisation of research questions, the foundations and assumptions that these questions are based on and methods which may be appropriate to answer such questions. The course will enable students to develop their knowledge and understanding of the ontological underpinnings of research and what it is to make claims on the basis of research (epistemological challenges). Furthermore the relationships between research, theory and practice will be an underpinning theme throughout the course. Consideration will be given throughout the course to the role of philosophical inquiry and educational theory.
Course description Indicative content
1. Introduction to theories of the nature of reality and knowledge and their relationship to educational research.
2. The relationship between methods and methodologies
3. The relationships between research, theory and practice in educational research.
4. Ethical challenges and practices in educational research
5. Inductive and deductive strategies in research planning and implementation.

A significant part of the course will be concerned with identifying the value of various research approaches in relation to the substantive literature in various fields of practice and through this process identify strengths, weaknesses and gaps in the literature of these fields.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2024/25, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  None
Course Start Semester 2
Course Start Date 13/01/2025
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 100 ( Lecture Hours 5, Supervised Practical/Workshop/Studio Hours 8, Formative Assessment Hours 25, Summative Assessment Hours 25, Revision Session Hours 35, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 0 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Formative assignment.
Students present an evaluation of an article. MCQ available to check learning througout the course

Final Assessment (2,000 words)
Assignment activities will be directed towards methodological issues and philosophical underpinnings of the substantive literature in the field of practice of students taking the course.
Feedback Feedback on the formative assignment is given as a general response to the work of each group - the feedback will be organised by assessment criteria.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. demonstrate a critical awareness of different philosophical assumptions in foundations of educational research
  2. demonstrate the ability to analyse and synthesise evidence of theorising in published research
  3. critically evaluate the relation between research, theory and practice
  4. exercise professional insight into the ethical challenges of research projects
  5. exercise initiative in research design based on critical understanding of the relation between theory and practice
Reading List
Ariely, D. (2008). Predictably irrational: The hidden forces that shape our decisions. London: Harper Collins.
Boyle, D. (2000). The tyranny of numbers: Why counting can't make us happy. London: HarperCollins.
Cohen, L., L. Manion and K. Morrison (2007). Research methods in education. London: Routledge.
Crotty, M. (1998). The foundations of social research: Meaning and perspective in the research process. London: SAGE.
Goldacre, B. (2008). Bad science. London: Fourth Estate.
Pring, R. (2000). Philosophy of educational research. London & New York: Continuum.
Robson, C. (2011). Real world research: a resource for social scientists and practitioner-researchers. Madden, Mass., Oxford: Blackwell Publishers.
Taleb, N. (2007). The black swan: The impact of the highly improbable. New York: Random House.

Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills 1. knowledge and evaluative ability in research and enquiry
2. critical awareness of decision making in own research projects
3. engagement with knowledge exchange processes
4. personal effectiveness in applying theory to practice
KeywordsConceptualising research
Course organiserDr Sal Consoli
Course secretaryMs Annemarijn Huizinga
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