KF7029 - MSc Computer Science & Digital Technologies Project

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What will I learn on this module?

The aim of this module is to enable you to undertake a substantial academic research project at Masters level and present the results from this work in both written and oral forms. Your project itself will be a major piece of independent and original research centred at the forefront of your programme discipline within the wider sphere of the computer science and digital technologies field.

You will experience the full life cycle of a research project from initial conception and development of a research proposal, through a critical review of the literature, planning, design, implementation and analysis of your main research project, to final evaluation, reflection and dissemination. You will be expected to consider and address the professional, ethical, legal and social issues related to this academic research project. You will also be expected to apply your expertise, project management and practical skills within your particular domain of computer science and digital technologies and demonstrate critical and innovative thinking and problem solving within a research environment.

Your research proposal will normally have been produced as part of an earlier module on research and project planning but should be reviewed again at the start of the project phase to ensure it is still valid and appropriate.

How will I learn on this module?

You will be largely working alone on a unique task during this module. While you will receive guidance and assistance from your allocated academic supervisor, the responsibility for the work ultimately lies with you and you will be expected to operate as an independent learner and carry out research and discover new information for yourself. You need to be able to demonstrate a disciplined and ethical approach and demonstrate your professionalism by taking responsibility for your own work, using professional development standards, planning your project work, meeting deadlines, respecting the work of others and dealing with your own problems in a responsible manner.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

At the start of your project you will be allocated an academic supervisor by the MSc Project Tutor. It is then your responsibility to initially contact and find out the best methods for contacting your supervisor during your project period. During the main part of the project, you are expected to have regular meetings with your supervisor to discuss progress and to receive advice/guidance. You are responsible for setting up and keeping these appointments and also informing your supervisor of any problems that are preventing normal project work from taking place. Initially these meetings will take place weekly (or every two weeks for part-time students). Meetings may be less frequent once you are well established on the project. You should consider your supervisor to be a source of guidance and advice. The responsibility for the project is ultimately yours. Your supervisor should not have to tell you what to do – you need to organise yourself and your time. This does not mean that you should not ask for advice, but that you should know what advice to ask for and not continually be asking for advice. You will also be allocated a second marker whose main role is to provide independent advice and be an independent assessor of the final dissertation and viva. There is also a MSc Project Tutor who has overall responsibility for quality assurance and academic oversight of the module. The MSc Project Tutor also allocates supervisors and second markers to students and is responsible for gathering student feedback and reporting back on this to students.

There are no formal scheduled teaching hours for this module although there are formal supervisory hours which are used for the regular meetings between the supervisor and student.

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. Apply in depth specialist technical and academic knowledge and critical understanding of research methodologies and project management in the context of an independent academic research project related to your programme of study and at the forefront of the computer science and digital technology field

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
2. Identify, plan and execute a substantial independent research project demonstrating originality, critical and innovative thinking and problem solving

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
3. Critically evaluate and address professional, ethical, legal and social issues in an appropriate manner within an academic research environment
4. Effectively communicate the outcomes of a significant individual research project in both written and oral forms

How will I be assessed?

Formative
You will receive formative feedback throughout your project via your academic supervisor.

Summative
You will normally have produced a research proposal which forms the basis for your main research project as part of an earlier module on the taught programme. If this has not occurred you will be expected to produce it at the start of your project period.

You will also be expected to have applied and been granted ethical approval before starting on the research for your main project.

The summative assessments for this module are a written dissertation (typically 10-12000 words) and project viva. The latter can also be used to demonstrate any practical products/applications/experiments that have formed part of the project. These two elements will be marked together and address all the module learning outcomes.

The supervisor and second marker will independently assess the dissertation and viva and then agree a final overall mark. If there is substantial disagreement between them (more than 5% difference in overall mark), a third marker will be allocated.

Pre-requisite(s)

N/A

Co-requisite(s)

N/A

Module abstract

This module provides the opportunity for you to undertake a substantial academic research project centred at the forefront of your programme disciplines within the wider field of computer science and digital technologies. You will experience the full life cycle of a research project from initial conception and proposal, through a critical review of the literature, planning, design, implementation and analysis of your main research project, to final evaluation, reflection and dissemination. You will be expected to work independently but with the support and guidance of an academic supervisor. You will be able to apply and gain further valuable skills and expertise in relation to your chosen programme and future career path, including technical skills, research methodologies, project management, innovative and reflective thinking, problem solving and analytical skills. Your work will be formally assessed through the production of a final dissertation and accompanying viva.

Course info

Credits 60

Level of Study Postgraduate

Mode of Study 2 year full-time with Advanced Practice

Department Computer and Information Sciences

Location Ellison Building, Newcastle City Campus

City Newcastle

Start September 2019

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