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Research Project

Guide to Writing the Research Project

The following offer some guidelines for the project, please take the time to familiarise yourself with the whole page. If in doubt about anything please liaise with your seminar tutor either in seminars or their office hours.

Length & type of digital output

The Project is a webpage on your e-portfolio ( containing no more than 3000 words (excluding footnotes). It includes:

  • A max. 500 word project outline that discusses the project's intellectual aim, historical and historiogrpahical contexts, and the methodological issues.
  • A 2500 words* ‘main body’ of the Project. We expect students to dedicate at least 500 words to a ‘critical reflection’ in which you reflect on the key methodological, technological and intellectual challenges confronted during the project.
  • This should include a conclusion about the skills acquired and refined during the research and presentation of the project.

* If you decide to produce a Podcast or Videocast, we suggest it will be around 15-20 minutes long. You may also include a shorter pod/video-cast as part of the overall project. Please discuss this with your Tutor and with Dave Toulson


We would like to underline that the ‘Project’ is a critical engagement with primary sources and as such the emphasis is placed on the analysis of the primary sources used. We expect students to engage with up to three primary sources held at the Modern Records Centre and/or other archives and/or online databases. The original primary material should be embedded in your website (by scanning or digitally photographing it) or hyperlinked. This is important because the person marking your essay should be able to read also the primary source that you used. We encourage you to use your mobile phone’s camera or personal digital camera where possible.

If you decide to use the MRC, you are also encouraged to visit as early as possible. Please remember that the MRC can only accommodate 14 researchers at any one time and that, if there is no space when you visit, you might be asked to return at another time.

Secondary Literature

Your project should also show that you engaged with the appropriate secondary literature. We expect students to engage with at least 5 items of secondary literature on the topic considered.

Please note that you are welcome to choose any topic as long as you are able to find three primary sources and five pieces of secondary literature. However please discuss your proposed topic with your tutor to check its feasability.

Types of Projects

There are different approaches to the research project. Some of you might wish to consider one or more sources that tackle a specific topic. Other projects might consider a source(s) that raises different types of questions. Both models are common practice in research. One of the aims of the project is in fact to deal with the challenges posed by primary sources. You will be evaluated on your ability to critically engage with the source(s) considered; the capacity to contextualise it through the use of secondary sources and/or other primary sources; and the ability to present your findings in a clear and thoughtful manner.

Project Format

The final Project is a website that includes:

  • A. the project outline (as a 500-words text);
  • B. your analysis and primary sources (main body of the project; this can take the form of a pod- or videocast);
  • C. your critical reflections on the process leading to the project.

This website will be located within your eportfolio on

If you have any technical issues, or want to discuss how to do something, please e-mail Dave Toulson or come along to one of the drop in sessions Dave will advertise in weeks 4-5 of the Summer Term.

We encourage those of you who wish to experiment with utilising media such as podcasts and video to do so as these are skills that have been taught during the year.

Tutorial support

Your seminar tutor will have times when you can meet for advice. You will be able to have a short tutorial session at which further reading and the choice of output can be discussed. Students are expected to use the regular office hours of their tutor for further consultation through the duration of the module.

Technical Support

For any questions regarding technical issues please contact Dave Toulson

There will be a number of Technical Support Drop ins held in H3.06, run by Dave Toulson:

Wednesday, 15 May, 4-6pm

Wednesday, 22 May, 4-6pm

Tuesday, 28 May, 9am-5pm


From MyPortfolio you will be able to generate a Secret URL for your project. Put that URL into a word document and upload the Word document to Tabula (Please note that your work will be run through plagiarism software).

To do this follow the steps below:

1) From the front page of MyPortfolio ( click "Share". NB: Ensure your URL is visible to all registered Warwick users otherwise your project cannot be marked and you may receive 0


2) The Share page will allow you to create a URL to share your project. To generate a URL click on the "Secret URLS" button next to your research project (see below)


3) Paste your URL into a Word Document

4) Upload the word document to Tabula


Markers will assess your Project as follows:

  • 10% on the 500-word outline;
  • 65% on the main analysis of project;
  • 25% on your reflection.

Examples from Previous Years

Make sure you are logged in to My Portfolio to view these examples

How effective was the welfare state in improving the lives of working-class children between 1945-1960?

“Evaluate the changing portrayal of the 1984-5 miner’s strike in popular culture.”

The Bosnian War: A Human Conflict

How did representations of the 1984/5 Ethiopian famine impact public perceptions of the developing world in Britain?

What were the beliefs of the socialist anti-conscriptionists during World War One, and how were they relevant?