TE7076 - Understanding Educational Research and Methods

What will I learn on this module?

This module provides the underpinning skills and knowledge necessary to undertake independent research in education and training at Level 7. It will give you the opportunity to develop practical and theoretical skills in the use and understanding of different research paradigms, methodological approaches and their associated research methods. You will also develop an in-depth understanding of related issues, including but not restricted to, ethical concerns, data management and analysis, the use conceptual frameworks and how to engage critically with the literature. The module has a strong focus on practice, and you will be encouraged to take this as your starting point, to question and problematize professional concerns, and to develop those as research problems and questions.
This will provide you with a framework to critique and question research, policy and practice and their impact on Education and Training. Drawing on this, you will be able to develop a research proposal which addresses a professional concern, drawing on contemporary and relevant research literature in order to analyse and justify your methodological approach. You will also be supported to explore subject based literature in order to support your identification and exploration of a research problem.

How will I learn on this module?

Sessions will include formal lectures, seminars and practical and theoretical group work. You will learn through lectures, seminars and independent learning as you are supported to become an independent researcher. The lectures will cover theories and concepts that will enable you to participate in a series of guided tasks and discussions. The e-learning portal will provide additional learning support and enable communication between students and staff, and you will be enabled to use a wide range of electronic sources in order to access the most current literature in your field. You will be encouraged to engage with current thinking in this field through the critical evaluation of relevant research papers that will then be further explored within seminars. This ‘research rich’ learning approach will enable you to build upon previous higher education and/or practice experiences.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

Academic support for this module is provided by the module leader. The module leader will ensures that you receive clear guidance about the module learning outcomes and how you will be assessed against these. Individual and group tutorial time will be identified during the module. Students requiring additional support can arrange to meet, e-mail or telephone the module leader outside of module sessions. The University’s e-Learning Portal will offer remote access to materials and aids for support and learning and, in addition, tutors will respond to questions via the modules’ discussion board on the University’s eLearning Portal so that the whole group can benefit.
Support will also include feedback from tutors during seminars and tutorials.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at: http://readinglists.northumbria.ac.uk
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team – http://library.northumbria.ac.uk/readinglists)

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
• (1) A critical understanding of the theory and practice of research in education and training, including a range of different methodological and theoretical approaches.

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:

(1) Critically appraise contemporary research literature in a specific area, drawn from a variety of sources, and use it to identify and locate a research problem relevant to your professional practice

(2) Demonstrate a critical understanding of a variety of research designs appropriate to addressing identified professional issues.

(3) Draw on relevant literature, critically appraise and justify the choice of an appropriate research methodology and ‘fit for purpose’ methods to apply to a specific research problem.

(4) Critically and reflexively explore ethical issues arising within the research area and suggest strategies for their management.

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
(1) Further developed your project management skills by planning your research proposal as part of your summative assessment

(2) Enhanced your problem-solving skills by considering appropriate research methodology and ethical considerations within your summative assessment task

How will I be assessed?

Formative Assessment:
Individual and small group work including presentations on aspects of research practice which will include tutor and peer verbal feedback

Feedback will be given verbally by tutor and peers.

Summative Assessment:
Students are required to develop a research proposal for a study which addresses an identified professional concern. They are required to locate this proposal in the context of contemporary academic literature, address methodological and ethical issues, and to demonstrate skills of independence and originality in considering the most appropriate approach to take. (4500 words)
MLOs: (KU 1), (IPSA 1-4), (PVA 3 & 4)

Feedback will be written and graded using the criteria and the elaborated marking scale.





Module abstract

In the context of a rapidly changing professional environment which demands ‘evidence based’ solutions to problems, the need for practitioners who are able to undertake rigorous, ethical research has never been greater. In addition to old problems, such as those related to achievement, marginalisation and deprivation, there are new ones, associated with issues such as the use of new technologies and social media in teaching and learning.

The aim of this module is to facilitate you to develop the skills and knowledge necessary to investigate and respond to some of these challenges, enhancing your ability to conceptualise and critically understand the processes associated with undertaking an independent research project. In addition to content based lectures and seminars we will also attempt to answer questions related to the ideological approaches to research articulated by governments, and wider philosophical issues such as the relationship of research to values of social justice.

Course info

Credits 30

Level of Study Postgraduate

Mode of Study 24 months Part Time
2 other options available

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2024

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


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