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Module Specifications

Archived Version 2020 - 2021

Module Title
Module Code

Online Module Resources

NFQ level 9 Credit Rating 10
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None

The purpose of this module is to introduce students to research design. The module aims to prepare students for the construction of a research dissertation at masters degree level. It introduces students to a range of research methodologies and data collection methods. The approach taken allows students to discuss and evaluate the social context in which they work and live and to explore opportunities for researching their own work context. This module provides a platform of knowledge that allows students to tackle fieldwork using a variety of both tradition and innovative approaches.

Learning Outcomes

1. Design and construct a research dissertation
2. Critically engage with theory and literature in a chosen field of research
3. Compare and contrast philosophical and methodological approaches to research
4. Describe various research methods
5. Justify sampling approach.
6. Discuss the role of quality control and ethics in research

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Lecture25No Description
Independent Study100No Description
Assignment Completion125No Description
Total Workload: 250

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

Research Paradigms.


Literature Review.

Data Collection Methods.



Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment% Examination Weight%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
Reassessment Requirement
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
Indicative Reading List

  • Schutt, Russell K: 2008, Investigating the Social World: The process and practice of research, California: Sage,
  • O'Leary, Zina: 2004, The Essential Guide to Doing Research, London: Thousand Oakes,
  • Kemmis, Stephen, et al.: 2014, The action research planner: doing critical participatory action research, Singapore: Springer,,
  • McNiff, Jean,: 2014, Writing and doing action research, Los Angeles: SAGE,
  • Pink, Sarah: 2013, Doing visual ethnography, Los Angeles: SAGE,
  • Wolcott, Harry F.: 2008, Ethnography -a way of seeing, Lanham, MD: Altamira Press,
  • De Vaus, D. A: 2011, Research design in social research, London: SAGE,,
  • Costley, Carol,: 2010, Doing work based research: approaches to enquiry for insider-researchers, Los Angeles; London: SAGE,
  • Robson, Colin.,: 2016, Real world research: a resource for users of social research methods in applied settings, Hoboken, NJ: Wiley,
  • Gray, David E: 2009, Doing research in the real world, London: SAGE,
  • Yin, Robert K: 2014, Case study research: design and methods, Los Angeles: SAGE,
  • Creswell, John W; Plano Clark, Vicki L: 2011, Designing and conducting mixed methods research, Los Angeles: SAGE Publications,
  • Simonsen, Jesper: 0, Design research: synergies from interdisciplinary perspectives, London: Routledge,,
Other Resources

Programme or List of Programmes