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Dissertation and Assessed Lecture - Journal style (80 credits) - ARC00115M

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  • Department: Archaeology
  • Module co-ordinator: Prof. Kevin Walsh
  • Credit value: 80 credits
  • Credit level: M
  • Academic year of delivery: 2023-24
    • See module specification for other years: 2024-25
  • Notes: This is an independent study module

Module summary

The Independent Study Module (ISM) (often referred to as the dissertation) comprises the production of a piece of independent research with academic guidance particularly for students on an MSc programme. The dissertation (Journal Style) will synthesise and critically assess a range of primary and secondary archaeological evidence.

The dissertation is a substantial piece of written work produced to professional standards, written in the style of an academic journal including appropriate graphical and text presentation skills. The preparation for the dissertation is supported by a range of lectures/workshops and resources that will review and discuss the skills required to successfully complete the dissertation.

Related modules

This module will run over Semester 2, and Summer Semester Part A and Summer Semester Part B.

This dissertation format is only available to students studying on MSc programmes. 

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Semester 2 2023-24 to Summer Semester 2023-24

Module aims

The purpose of the journal-style dissertation is to allow MSc students to undertake a substantial piece of independent research on a subject of their own choosing. The journal-style dissertation will allow them to apply research and study skills acquired during their core taught modules and to work with the guidance of one or more members of academic staff.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of the module, students should be able to:

  • demonstrate specialist knowledge and understanding of their chosen subject
  • execute a programme of research, working independently
  • synthesise and critically evaluate a range of primary and secondary evidence
  • structure a substantial piece of written work
  • present a written journal-style dissertation to professional standards, including appropriate graphical and text presentation skills
  • manage their time effectively and complete a substantial piece of independent work to deadline
  • communicate research findings through a lecture


Task Length % of module mark
N/A 90
N/A 10

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
N/A 90
Presentation : Pre-recorded presentation
N/A 10

Module feedback

Formative: oral feedback from module leaders

Summative: written feedback within the University's turnaround policy

Indicative reading

Academic Writing Dissertations:

Academic Writing Subject Guide:

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.