Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2017-2018 (archived)


Department: Geography


Type Tied Level 4 Credits 15 Availability Not available in 2017/18 Module Cap
Tied to C8K107
Tied to F8K207


  • None.


  • None.

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.


  • This module aims to enable students to develop the range of practical skills used in the development, prosecution and reporting of research. It should help student to manage their time; structure their research; and gain confidence in presenting their findings in a professional and academic manner.


  • Team work and cooperation
  • Writing styles and strategies
  • Bibliographic skills; handling data
  • Presentation skills, visual material and use of illustrations
  • PowerPoint, Endnote, posters and manipulating images; mapping

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • Students should understand the practical implications of current debates in their subject field and how this affects their own approach to research.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • The acquisition of practical skills to help students manage a research project. In particular to develop appreciation of the importance of: planning a research project; time management; team work and cooperation
  • The acquisition of enhanced bibliographic skills
  • The communication of research ideas in a conference workshop
  • The development of writing styles and strategies appropriate to Masters level study (in Geography)
Key Skills:
  • The acquisition of presentation skills for the dissemination of research in a way that is consistent with professional practice

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

  • This module is presented as a series of workshops. Each workshop is focussed on the one of the four subject skills listed above and includes an introduction by the staff which is followed by the development of the theme in a mixture of task- and student-led discussions. These discussions take place within the research context of the individual students and are developed specifically to encourage the stated Key Skills (above). This training in personal and intellectual skills will enable them to choose and apply appropriate techniques for their research from those used by professional geographers.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Workshop 4 weekly 4 16
Full day conference 1 Full day 7
Preparation & Reading 127
Total 150

Summative Assessment

Component: Coursework Component Weighting: 50%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Written report 2500 words 100% Yes
Component: Oral presentation Component Weighting: 50%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Oral presentation 20 mins (15 plus 5 for questions) 100% Yes

Formative Assessment:

Individual formative report (1000 words max) reflecting on individual research practice and the process of writing

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