Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Undergraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2012-2013 (archived)

Module EDUC3141: Single Dissertation in the Theory and Philosophy of Social Science

Department: Education

EDUC3141: Single Dissertation in the Theory and Philosophy of Social Science

Type Open Level 3 Credits 20 Availability Available in 2012/13 Module Cap None. Location Durham
Tied to


  • The Discipline of Social Science (EDUC1191) AND Philosophy of Social Science (EDUC2191) or other appropriate evidence.


  • None

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None


  • For students to undertake an extended, independent piece of work drawing on and illuminating the theory of social science, particularly drawing on and developing ideas from the core modules 'Discipline of Social Science' (CSH1), 'Philosophy of Social Science' (CSH2) and, where appropriate, 'New Directions in Social Science' (CSH3).


  • Dissertation on a substantial topic in the field of social science chosen by the student.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • On completion the student will demonstrate that s/he: has a clear 'map' of the general area of the social sciences and the place on it of central writers and ideas.
  • understands what distinguishes social science from other discipline of study.
  • understand many of the approaches and topics characteristic of the social sciences.
  • has a clear understanding of key social science terms.
  • shows the ability to carry out research (literature based, empirical or a combination of both) under supervision.
  • can apply the above to the description and analysis of a substantial topic in social science.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Plan and devise a programme of work applicable to investigating the issue or problem chosen.
  • Survey and utilise literature relevant to the problem or issue and the programme of work.
  • Interpret and criticise relevant texts.
  • Evaluate arguments and evidence.
  • Present theoretical and empirical material in a scholarly and readable manner.
Key Skills:
  • Clear and succinct expression in writing and discussion.
  • Comprehension of complex ideas and theories.
  • Use of reasoned argument and evidence to defend a case.
  • Identification of appropriate sources of evidence and information.
  • Clear and logical identification and solution of problems.
  • Reflection on the experience of conducting an extended piece of research.

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

  • Supervision, which monitors the development of the learning outcomes above, is appropriate to the writing of an independent study.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Tutorials 3 Spaced throughout the year 1 hour 3
Preparation and reading 197
Total 200

Summative Assessment

Component: Dissertation Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Dissertation 9000 words maximum 100%

Formative Assessment:

None, but drafts of chapters monitored regularly

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