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CH956 - Scientific Research Skills I

  • Module code: CH956
  • Module name: Scientific Research Skills I
  • Department: MOAC Doctoral Training Centre
  • Credit: 10, 12, 20

Content and teaching | Assessment | Availability

Module content and teaching

Principal aims

Successful completion of university level research requires student to have made a ‘substantial contribution to knowledge’ (to quote university regulations) and that this is communicated to an appropriate research community. There are many aspects involved in undertaking original research, including the student’s own ability to think and to be creative. In addition, students need to have a range of skills that will enable them to use their intrinsic academic ability and scientific creativity to produce world class research. Some of the skills are technical, e.g. how you use a particular piece of equipment to collect data, but many of them transcend the details of a particular project. This module is designed to help them gain those transferable research skills. There is a list of tasks (see syllabus) that must be accomplished to a satisfactory standard to pass this module. Unlike many undergraduate courses, the aim should be to accomplish the task as effectively as possible while also taking risks to do things in a new way where that will improve the student’s research skills. Thus each task is assessed as pass/fail. To support students in achieving this level on each task they will be assigned a researcher as their personal mentor. The mentor will not help them do the tasks, but will support them as they do them by showing them how to proceed. The project work will be based in the mentor’s research area. The idea is that they will be required to undertake a literature review independently while interacting directly with a world expert in the topic.

Principal learning outcomes

By the end of the module the student should be able to: Evaluate the work of others; Understand and summarise the essential features of the work of others; to write clearly at a technical level; Present the essential features of the research-level work of others at a level appropriate for a non-specialist; Demonstrate an ability to present technical material; Present technical material verbally; Plan one’s research at a basic level and report on it; Understand the processes for funding and evaluation of research; Understanding learning styles; Team working.

Timetabled teaching activities

Lectures 5 hours; Seminars 10 hours; Meetings with mentor 10 hours; Meetings with colleagues 10 hours; Total contact hours 35.

Departmental link

Module assessment

Assessment group Assessment name Percentage
10 CATS (Module code: CH956-10)
A (Assessed work only) Portfolio 100%
12 CATS (Module code: CH956-12)
A (Assessed work only) Portfolio 100%
20 CATS (Module code: CH956-20)
A (Assessed work only) Portfolio 100%

Module availability

This module is available on the following courses:



Optional Core
  • Postgraduate Taught Scientific Research and Communication (F1PE) - Year 1
  • Postgraduate Taught Scientific Research and Communication (F1PE) - Year 2
  • Postgraduate Award in Scientific Research and Communication (F1PF) - Year 1
  • Postgraduate Award in Scientific Research and Communication (F1PF) - Year 2