DCU Home | Our Courses | Loop | Registry | Library | Search DCU


Module Specifications

Archived Version 2005 - 2006

Module Title Research Dissertation
Module Code NS593
School School of Nursing and Human Sciences

Online Module Resources

Module Co-ordinatorDr Gemma KiernanOffice NumberH219
Level 5 Credit Rating 15
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Module Aims
'To equip students, through training in the use of advanced research techniques, to design a research project, execute it and analyse the results under supervision. The chosen research topic will reflect the nature of the course pathway. 'To promote an evidence-based approach to students' counselling practice. 'To assist students to develop individual research interests

Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of the module, and following a period of personal study and empirical investigation the student will be able to: 'Critically discuss the scientific standing of counselling research. 'Critically examine the philosophical roots of the main approaches to research in the context of counselling. 'Demonstrate an understanding of the range of research designs. 'Demonstrate proficiency with the use of statistical and qualitative analysis techniques. 'Select research instruments according to the research question and defend the choice. 'Set out a clinical problem in the form of a research proposal, negotiate access and obtain ethical approval for its execution 'Design and implement a plan for data collection and data analysis.

Indicative Time Allowances
Lectures 0
Tutorials 0
Laboratories 0
Seminars 0
Independent Learning Time 225

Total 225
Assume that a 15 credit module load represents approximately 225 hours' work, which includes all teaching, in-course assignments, laboratory work or other specialised training and an estimated private learning time associated with the module.

Indicative Syllabus
The basis to a research dissertation is the independent study and research carried out by a student. In order to achieve this, students require specialist preparation and support. Accordingly, the module will include formal advanced research training sessions, tutorial work and exposure to practicing researchers through interactive seminar presentations. Research supervision will be available for a minimum of 12 contact hours.Taught and experiential sessions §An introduction to the MSc dissertation - supervision, proposal writing, research access, protection of participants, workload, dissertation guidelines. §Qualitative research - approaches to qualitative research, research methods and techniques, qualitative data analysis and reporting. §Quantitative research - approaches to quantitative research, research methods and techniques, data analysis and reporting. §Research design and methodology - Surveys, quasi-experiments, field research, focus groups and interviews. §Literature reviewing - using a systematic review approach to identify, analyse and report on a body of literature. §Effective report and dissertation writing.Tutorials §Staff and students will work together in seminars to work on ideas for proposals and provide peer feedback on progress to date.Researcher-led seminars §Comparative analysis of qualitative and quantitative research approaches. §Application of research to practice. §Counselling and psychotherapy research - critical issues.
Continuous Assessment100% Examination Weight0%
Indicative Reading List
Essential: Brace, N., Kemp, R., & Snelgar, R. (2000). SPSS for psychologists: A guide to data analysis using SPSS for Windows. Basingstoke: Macmillan. McLeod, J. (2000). Qualitative research in counselling and psychotherapy. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. McLeod, J. (2003). Doing counselling research. John McLeod. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. Silverman, D. (2000). Doing qualitative research: A practical handbook. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Wolcott, H.F. (2001). Writing up qualitative research. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. Supplementary: Aron, & Aron, E.N. (1999). Statistics for psychology. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall. Barker, C., Pistrang, N., & Elliott, R. (1995). Research methods in clinical and counselling psychology. London: Wiley. Bell, P., Staines, P. and Michell, J. (2001). Evaluating, doing and writing research in psychology. London: Sage Publications. Chen, S., & Hall, J. (2003). Online social research: Methods, issues, and ethics. Peter Lang Publishing. Clarkson, P. (1997). Counselling psychology: Integration of theory, research and supervised practice. London: Routledge. Coakes, S.J., & Steed, L.G. (2000). SPSS analysis without anguish. London: Wiley.Denzin, N.K., & Lincoln, Y.S. (2000). Handbook of qualitative research. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Dryden, W. (1996). Research in counselling and psychotherapy: Practical applications. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. Ellis, D. (2000). Becoming a master student. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. Fowler, F.J. (2001). Survey research methods. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. Gahan, C., & Hannibal, M. (1998). Doing qualitative research using QSR NUD7IST. London: Sage Publications. Glatthorn, A.A. (1998). Writing the winning dissertation: A step-by-step guide. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press. Gomm, R., & Davies, C. (2000). Using evidence in health and social care. London: Sage Publications. Hart, C. (2001). Doing a literature search: A comprehensive guide for the social sciences. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Heiman, G. (2001). Understanding research methods and statistics. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. Heppner, P. (1998). Research design in counselling. Pacific Grove, CA: Brooks Cole. Houser, R. (1998). Counselling and educational research: Evaluation and application. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. Howell, D. (1997). Statistical methods for psychology. Belmont, CA: Duxbury Press. Krueger, R.A., & Casey, M.A. (2000). Focus groups: A practical guide for applied research. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. Marvasti, A. (2003). Qualitative research in sociology. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. Mason, J. (2002). Qualitative researching. London: Sage Publications. Mauthner M., Birch, M., Jessop J., & Miller T. (2002) Ethics in Qualitative Research Sage Publications London McLeod, J. (1999). Practitioner research in counselling (professional skills for counsellors). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. Memon, A., & Bull, R. (2000). Handbook of the psychology of interviewing. London: Wiley. Neuendorf, K.A. (2002). The content analysis guidebook. London: Sage Publications. Parsons, A., H., & Houlihan Parsons. p. (1992) Health Care Ethics. Toronto, Wall and Emerson Inc Potter, S. (2002). Doing postgraduate research. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications. Punch, K.F. (2000). Developing effective research proposals. London: Sage Publications. Rapley, M. (2003). Quality of Life research. A critical introduction. London: Sage Publications. Rossi, P.H., Freeman, H.E., & Lipsey, M.W. (1999). Evaluation: A systematic approach. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Programme or List of Programmes
MSCPMSc in Counselling