Module description


You can undertake your own in-depth research study into a topic related to your degree subject which interests you. You will benefit from having the opportunity to plan and manage your individual research into a topic at a level not covered in the taught modules, and gain from the guidance provided by your dissertation supervisor, successfully concluding in an extended written dissertation. The topic of your dissertation is of your choosing. There are some taught elements on research methods and skills that are covered in term 1.

Additional Information: Employability

These dissertations are linked to their internships and business projects, so they provide a strong talking point for future interviews. Students also develop their research and comprehension skills.

Full module specification

Module title:Dissertation
Module code:BUS3001
Module level:3
Academic year:2018/9
Module lecturers:
  • Professor Nazrul Islam - Convenor
Module credit:30
ECTS value:






Duration of module: Duration (weeks) - term 1:


Duration (weeks) - term 2:


Duration (weeks) - term 3:


Module aims

The aim of writing a dissertation is to give students the opportunity to research a topic related to their programme of study, which is not covered in depth by any taught module being offered that year. It is also designed to give students the opportunity to plan and manage their own research and to produce an extended written dissertation.

The exact nature of knowledge development in this module will be dependent upon the nature of the research project undertaken, which may be from any area of the Business School (Accounting, Finance, Economics or Management).

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. plan and execute an original research project
  • 2. research extensively and critically on a chosen academic or practical topic and demonstrate application of the underlying discipline concepts and/or research processes

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 3. use appropriate information, research and data resources (via library or Business School data sources)
  • 4. apply broader discipline knowledge to the specific research project
  • 5. present and assess findings in a manner consistent with the norms of the subject area

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 6. work independently, and seek and apply advice from the supervisor
  • 7. take responsibility for the direction and management of a research project through to completion and submission
  • 8. present research in a clear and academic format
  • 9. develop arguments firmly supported by evidence and logic

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled learning & teaching activities5Supervision
Scheduled learning & teaching activities20Lectures and practical classes
Guided independent study135Reading and research
Guided independent study140Writing up a dissertation

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Project plans and draft chaptersAs appropriate to the project and position in the research and writing process1-9Verbal and/or written

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Dissertation10010,000 words excluding tables, charts and appendices. 1-8Verbal and Written

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
DissertationRevision of the dissertation based on the given feedback1-9August assessment period

Syllabus plan

  • As agreed with supervisor

 Taught sessions

  • Introduction to the Module
  • Expectations and Resources
  • Literature Review and Synthesising Literature
  • Finding Research Gap and Identify Objectives
  • Research Design and Method
  • Quantitative and Qualitative Method
  • Nature of Research Sample and Data Collection
  • Data Analysis and Interpretation

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Basic reading:

Bryman, A & Bell, E. (2015). Business research methods. (4th ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Saunders M., Lewis P. & Thornhill A. (2015). Research methods for business students. (7th ed.). Harlow: Pearson.

Other Resources: 

Atkinson, P. & Delamont, S. (Eds.). (2010) SAGE qualitative research methods. London: SAGE [This is only available online, and can be accessed via http://lib.exeter.ac.uk/record=b2536116~S6]

Vogt, W. P. (Ed.). (2011). SAGE quantitative research methods. London: SAGE [This is only available online, and can be accessed via http://lib.exeter.ac.uk/record=b2536117~S6]

ELE – http://vle.exeter.ac.uk/course/view.php?id=2305


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