Individual Study Module - EDU00012H

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  • Department: Education
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Jeremy Airey
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: H
  • Academic year of delivery: 2019-20

Module summary

Students may propose to undertake an individual study module relevant to their programme in place of a taught Optional Module in Term 7, if they wish to undertake an academic study of a topic that is not otherwise represented in the student's programme. Proposals must be submitted to the student's Programme Leader during Term 5 for approval during Term 6; the handbook gives more information.

Professional requirements

Students are reminded that an Individual Study Module must be relevant to their progamme of study. In particular,

BA English in Education students' Individual Studies must be related to language or literature and education.

BSc Psychology in Education students' Individual Studies must be related to psychology in education.

Related modules

Pre-requisite modules

  • None

Co-requisite modules

  • None

Prohibited combinations


Module will run

Occurrence Teaching cycle
A Autumn Term 2019-20

Module aims

The individual study module offers you the possibility of working towards the attainment of your Programme Learning Outcomes by studying, at an academic level (i.e. research and theory, perhaps in relation to policy and/or practice) issues concerned with a topic area that is relevant to, but otherwise not represented in, your programme. It is not experiential learning and neither is it empirical enquiry. It is academic enquiry, supported by reading, reflection and critical analysis; it may however involve observations, discussions and interviews with key informants, to support your developing knowledge and understanding. For example, you might choose to study and write about issues in Physical Education; or Shakespeare in the community; or psychological perspectives on technology-enhanced learning. A successful individual study module will enhance your employability profile by developing and demonstrating your ability to propose, plan and carry out an academic study with a degree of independence, as well as by enhancing your knowledge and understanding of the substantive and methodological aspects of the field of the study.

Module learning outcomes

By completing an Individual Study module, you will gain critical knowledge and understanding of the topic you have chosen. You will be able to critically reflect on current and/or important issues and debates in the topic, be they theoretical or practical. You will also be able to reflect on and evaluate relationships between theory, research and scholarship, policy and practice, bringing research evidence to bear in informing discussion. You will show that you can access, interpret and critically evaluate the literature in the field, both in the substantive area and concerning methodological aspects.

Module content

The proposal for an Individual Study will be developed by you, the student. You must submit an outline to the module coordinator during Term 5. The outline should cover, briefly (500 words max), the topic you intend to study and why – what makes you interested in it, and what you hope to get out of the study – and why you think it is feasible and appropriate for a Stage 3 module. Typically, a student would discuss this with their supervisor.

You will receive brief feedback from the module coordinator (who will have consulted with the Programme Leader). You may be invited to submit a full proposal. The proposal should expand on the outline to turn it into a brief (1000 words max) but clear statement of

  • the rationale and aims for the particular Individual Study proposed
  • the general area of focus and scope of the field on which the Study and the associated written report will be based
  • the methods by which material and information will be accessed.

Responsibility for writing the proposal lies with you, the student, but the module coordinator will provide support, guidance and challenge (in consultation with the Programme Leader).

Once the proposal has been agreed with the Programme Leader, the module coordinator will seek approval on your behalf from the Undergraduate Teaching Committee, and from the Board of Studies at the end of Term 6. You will not be allowed to undertake an Individual Study or to receive credit relating to any work done for an Individual Study until the proposal has been accepted and approved at the Board of Studies meeting in the term before the Study.

As part of the approvals process, the department will consider your rationale and motivations for the proposed Individual Study, and will check that the field is sufficiently broad in scope and appropriately rigorous, with a suitably extensive body of literature.

The department will allocate a study supervisor, who will be an academic member of staff in the department (this person may also be the module coordinator). The Board of Studies will also ascertain that there is a member of staff who is willing to mark an Individual Study in the proposed field and who can validate the proposal as an appropriate study. The moderator will normally be the study supervisor.

There will be three meetings with your study supervisor during the term. The first tutorial (in week 2) will require you to reflect on progress since the proposal was accepted, to re-confirm the direction and to agree a time-plan for the study, which should be presented orally and in writing along with an intended reading list. The second tutorial (in week 6) will involve the presentation of a 2000-word formative essay, which will

  • set out key matters of interest in the field, such as issues and debates or important research questions, demonstrating wide reading of key sources (substantive and methodological research, theory and policy, as appropriate) to give a critical and balanced account
  • narrow down a focus onto a topic that will form the basis of the summative essay, in due course, setting the context and rationale for this.

The final tutorial, in week 8, will involve presentation and discussion of your proposed title and plan for the summative essay.

You will be required to submit for summative assessment a written essay 5,000 words in length by Thursday of Week 1 of the term following the Individual Study, emergent from the plans presented and discussed in the final tutorial, and fully referenced according to APA conventions.

Assessment

Task Length % of module mark
Essay/coursework
5000 Word Essay
N/A 100

Special assessment rules

None

Additional assessment information

Formative assessment is embedded through the development of the proposal and through the three tutorials. The first tutorial (in week 2) will require the student to reflect on progress since the proposal was accepted and to re-confirm the direction and time-plan for the study, which should be presented orally and in writing along with an intended reading list. The second tutorial (in week 6) will involve the presentation of a 2000-word formative essay which will

  • set out key matters of interest in the field, such as issues and debates or important research questions, demonstrating wide reading of key sources (substantive and methodological research, theory and policy, as appropriate) to give a critical and balanced account
  • narrow down a focus onto a topic that will form the basis of the summative essay, in due course, setting the context and rationale for this.

The final tutorial, in week 8, will involve presentation and discussion of the proposed title and plan for the summative essay.

You will be required to submit for summative assessment a written essay 5,000 words in length by Thursday of Week 1 of the term following the Individual Study, emergent from the plans presented and discussed in the final tutorial, and fully referenced according to APA conventions.

If a re-assessment is required in the summer reassessment week, this will consist of the essay in a revised form, accompanied by a brief (500 words max) commentary explaining how the essay has been revised in the light of feedback received.

Reassessment

Task Length % of module mark
Essay/coursework
5000 Word Essay
N/A 100

Module feedback

Students will receive oral feedback and brief written comments shortly after the submission of their formative assessments. They will receive written feedback on the summative assessment through the usual routes, on the standard feedback form. Marking will be according to the Undergraduate Marking Criteria.

Indicative reading

The key texts will be specific to the student's chosen field of study.



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.