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Module Specifications..

Current Academic Year 2023 - 2024

Please note that this information is subject to change.

Module Title Strategies for Academic Writing
Module Code GS608BS
School DCUBS
Module Co-ordinatorSemester 1: Teresa Hogan
Semester 2: Anne Sigismund Huff
Autumn: Teresa Hogan
Module TeachersTeresa Hogan
Janine Bosak
Anne Sigismund Huff
NFQ level 9 Credit Rating 5
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None

The purpose of this module is to explore the doctoral research process from a writing perspective. During this module students will examine the literature review, the development of research questions, the nature and extent of original contribution, and skills and techniques required for doctoral level research and writing.

Learning Outcomes

1. Consider and develop the relevant skills, techniques and strategies required to undertake research and writing in their chosen field (e.g. information management).
2. Identify relevant journals and conferences of high national and international standing in their field of study.
3. Review, evaluate and synthesize the body of literature relevant to their research.
4. Develop an understanding of what constitutes a contribution to knowledge, and how to articulate and defend that contribution.

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Seminars12Discussions based on prescribed readings and assignments
Lecture12Presentation and guest lectures
Assignment Completion40Assessed assignment (written and oral)
Independent Study11Readings
Directed learning20Specified readings
Directed learning30Assignment for class (for example, content analysis of a PhD thesis; review of literature and empirical articles; citation analysis
Total Workload: 125

All module information is indicative and subject to change. For further information,students are advised to refer to the University's Marks and Standards and Programme Specific Regulations at: http://www.dcu.ie/registry/examinations/index.shtml

Indicative Content and Learning Activities

Topic 1
The doctorate degree and criteria used to evaluate doctorate research

Topic 2
The literature review. Alternative forms (and objectives) of literature reviews.

Topic 3
Analysis the impact of prior work through the analysis of citations.

Topic 4
Developing and formulating research question(s).

Topic 5
Writing, positioning and presenting doctoral research.

Topic 6
The nature of 'original contribution(s)'. How to articulate (and claim) an 'original contribution'.

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment100% Examination Weight0%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
AssignmentIn this assignment the students assess their doctorate studies in terms of (a) the structure, scope, focus and content of their literature review; (b) the development of a research question; and (c) the 'original contribution' of their work. Submission of approximately 1,500 words.75%
Oral ExaminationStudents will present and defend key choices in the research process to date including the following: (a) research question (b) prior literature (c) research context and (d) research contribution. Presentation of approximately 20 minutes, followed by question and answers session.25%
Reassessment Requirement Type
Resit arrangements are explained by the following categories;
1 = A resit is available for all components of the module
2 = No resit is available for 100% continuous assessment module
3 = No resit is available for the continuous assessment component
This module is category 2
Indicative Reading List

  • Jesson, J. K, Matheson, L. and Lacey, F. M.: 2011, Doing your literature review traditional and systematic techniques, 1st Edition, Sage, London,
  • Philips, E. M. and Pugh D. S.: 2010, How to Get a PhD, 5th Edition, Open University Press,
  • Hart. C.: 1998, Doing a Literature Review, 1st Edition, Sage, London,
Other Resources

Programme or List of Programmes
GTBSGraduate Training Visitor Program (BS)
MPBSMPhil (Business)
MPCSMPhil (Communications)
MPELMPhil (English)
MPHGMPhil (History & Geography)
MPTPMPhil (Theology, Philosophy & Music)

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