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Research Methods, Theory & Data Analysis - ELE00172M

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  • Department: Electronic Engineering
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Masoumeh Jahani
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: M
  • Academic year of delivery: 2024-25
    • See module specification for other years: 2023-24

Module summary

This module explores the general issues associated with engineering and business decision making where new information is required to inform those decisions - this is created through research. The module will enable students to build on theoretical foundations of the research process and any existing data analysis knowledge. Students will learn the fundamentals of research methods theory and data analysis to equip them with the knowledge to undertake and evaluate research.

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Semester 1 2024-25

Module aims

Subject content aims:

  • Enable students to fully understand the range of research approaches, methodologies and strategies used in research;

  • Give students the tools or knowledge by which they can design a research proposal applying relevant research strategies to collect and test data;

  • Clarify evaluation methods for qualitative and quantitative data;

  • Ensure students are able to carry out appropriate research ensuring an ethical research methodology is employed;

Graduate skills aims:

  • To develop capacity for analysis and synthesis of data instances

  • To develop research skills on exploring real-world engineering issues

  • To develop an ability to structure and present information concisely

  • An improved capacity for applying knowledge in practice

Module learning outcomes

Subject content learning outcomes

After successful completion of this module, students will:

  • Analyse qualitative and quantitative information

  • Synthesise information and formulate appropriate outputs

  • Apply the principles of research ethics to data storage and reporting

  • Communicate the output of research appropriately to different stakeholders

Graduate skills learning outcomes

After successful completion of this module, students will be able to:

  • Apply knowledge in practice – evidence of application in the assessment

  • Analyse and synthesise data evidenced through the module assessment.

  • Plan and manage their time – plan their own activities and manage their own time to achieve the required deliverables

  • Format the data analysis report (open book exam) to a commercially acceptable standard

  • Communicate research outputs in an effective manner for the given audience

Module content

  • Introduction to Research

  • Theoretical foundations of Research Methods

  • Qualitative Research Methods

  • Quantitative Research Methods

  • Mixed Research Methods

  • Different Research strategies .

  • Research Design and Process

  • Data Collection Techniques

  • Interview Design and Analysis

  • Statistical Data Analysis

  • Research Data Presentation


Task Length % of module mark
Closed/in-person Exam (Centrally scheduled)
Research Methods, Theory & Data Analysis Analysis
2 hours 40
Online Exam - 24 hrs (Centrally scheduled)
Research Methods, Theory & Data Analysis Open Exam
8 hours 40
University - project
Research Engagement (individual)
N/A 20

Special assessment rules


Additional assessment information

For the data analysis open book exam, assume use of Excel for statistics rather than more specific software e.g. SPSS.


Task Length % of module mark
Closed/in-person Exam (Centrally scheduled)
Research Methods, Theory & Data Analysis Analysis
2 hours 40
Online Exam - 24 hrs (Centrally scheduled)
Research Methods, Theory & Data Analysis Open Exam
8 hours 40

Module feedback

'Feedback’ at a university level can be understood as any part of the learning process which is designed to guide your progress through your degree programme. We aim to help you reflect on your own learning and help you feel more clear about your progress through clarifying what is expected of you in both formative and summative assessments. A comprehensive guide to feedback and to forms of feedback is available in the Guide to Assessment Standards, Marking and Feedback.

The School of PET aims to provide some form of feedback on all formative and summative assessments that are carried out during the degree programme. In general, feedback on any written work/assignments undertaken will be sufficient so as to indicate the nature of the changes needed in order to improve the work. The School will endeavour to return all exam feedback within the timescale set out in the University's Policy on Assessment Feedback Turnaround Time. The School would normally expect to adhere to the times given, however, it is possible that exceptional circumstances may delay feedback. The School will endeavour to keep such delays to a minimum. Please note that any marks released are subject to ratification by the Board of Examiners and Senate. Meetings at the start/end of each term provide you with an opportunity to discuss and reflect with your supervisor on your overall performance to date.

Indicative reading

  • Creswell, J. W. (2003). Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative, and Mixed Methods Approaches. 2nd edn. Thousand Oaks, SAGE Publications: California

  • Walliman, N. (2011). Research Methods: The Basics. 1st edn. Routledge, Oxon, NY

  • Saunders, M., Lewis, P. and Thornhill, A. (2009) Research Methods for Business Students, 5th edition, Harlow: Pearson Education. ISBN 9780273716860

  • Taylor, S. (2001) Business Statistics, London: Palgrave-McMillan, ISBN 0333794451.

  • McNeill, P. (2005). Research Methods, 3rd Ed, London: Routledge. ISBN: 0415340764

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.