Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2012-2013 (archived)

Module HEAS42815: Reflections on Research in Medical Education

Department: Health [Queen's Campus, Stockton]

HEAS42815: Reflections on Research in Medical Education

Type Tied Level 4 Credits 15 Availability Available in 2012/13 Module Cap None.


  • Students must be undertaking or have undertaken Qualitative Health Research Methods or Quantitative Health Research Methods to take this module.


  • None

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None


  • This is an optional module for the MSc in Medical Education. It seeks to improve students’ awareness of the realities of ‘doing research’ and to increase understanding of how research might be integrated into a future career in medical education.


  • The specific content will be decided in discussion between the students and module leader and will depend on the research seminars attended, the students’ specific interests and career intentions, and aspects of professional reflexivity pursued by individual students.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • By the end of module students will have developed a critical understanding of:
  • Core considerations in managing and undertaking research
  • The uncertainties and difficulties that arise when undertaking research projects and impact these can have on the reliability and generalisability of results
  • The contribution that reflexivity about practice makes to identifying and designing research projects and how the results of those research projects might feedback into practice.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Assessing the practical requirements and implications of research efforts
  • Thinking reflexively about the interconnections between practice and research
  • Contributing to ongoing research discussions.
Key Skills:
  • Key skills are embodied in the subject specific skills. These include:
  • Critical thinking - critiquing existing knowledge and research findings in the light of others' work and the application of advanced knowledge to specialised topic of own choice
  • Knowledge management - collating and synthesising material from different sources
  • Reflexivity - thinking reflectively on one's self and one's work with a view to understanding oneself as a developing professional and commiting to continuous improvement and deepening knowledge.

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • Research seminar participation - Allows students to learn firsthand from professionals who both practice and research in the field of medical education about how research was conducted and the processes of collecting, analyzing and presenting research data and findings
  • Seminars - Allow students to work through concepts in more detail, providing both teacher and peer led input, promoting discussion and further developing reflexive practice and communication skills
  • Structured reading - Allows students to pursue topics in greater detail enabling familiarity with reflexive practice
  • Independent study, research and analysis - Focuses student knowledge more deeply by pursuing aspects of the module that are of special interest to themselves and exploring specific applications in their field of endeavour.
  • Written assessment will test a) students' ability to reflectively assess their proficiency in thinking through the complexity of research issues in medical education and their relevence to practice b) their critical knowledge and understanding of key concepts c)their ability to argue coherently and communicate effectively in writing.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Research seminars minumum of 5 occasionally 1 hr 6
Module seminars 5 Occasionally 90 mins 7.5
Structured reading weekly 3 hrs 30
Self supported learning student determined student determined 107.5
Total 150

Summative Assessment

Component: Dissertation Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
assignment 3000 100% resubmission

Formative Assessment:

A class presentation and 1500 assignment

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University