This module requires students to engage actively in understanding the real-life application of the theories they studied in their first year modules. The problem we investigate is the High Speed 2 rail line (HS2): this is obviously a broad area of study, and one that has a wealth of qualitative and quantitative data to be examined / critiqued. The module aims to provide students with opportunities to examine the Economic, Environmental and Social arguments that have been advanced in relation to the case. In this respect the module’s aim aligns with the Quality Assurance Agency’s advice that:
“Pedagogical approaches that are particularly effective in the context of education for sustainable development tend to have an authentic aspect, enabling students to relate their learning to real-life problems and situations” (June 2014).
The module also aims to strengthen the research skills of students, though a combination of assessed online activities, taught workshops, and an assessed reflective journal and viva on the process of completing the group project. In groups led by an academic supervisor, each group of 4-5 students will formulate one question for in-depth investigation to produce an output (the format of which can vary) and a presentation to a public forum.
Principal Learning Outcomes
Upon completing this module you will be able to demonstrate the following knowledge:
- understanding of the Economic Case for HS2 and of the counter-arguments presented against it;
- knowledge of, and practical engagement with, the social perspectives and attitudes towards HS2;
- understanding of the environmental arguments and counter-arguments presented in relation to HS2;
Upon completing this module you acquire the following skills:
- developing research questions that deconstruct a major problem;
- formulating hypotheses and testing them using the most appropriate method;
- being able to discriminate between different types of evidence, and to evaluate them using scientific criteria;
- undertaking field research including: archival searches, conducting interviews, managing focus groups.
|Group Research Project||
5,000-6,000 word essay or a project of equivalent standard (50%)
Reflective Journal and Individual Viva
Group Presentation (in public forum)
1,500 words from reflective journal and 15-minute Viva (25%)
20-25 minutes (15%)