Research Dissertation - LING8990

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2023 to 2024
Year 7 60 (30) Vikki Janke checkmark-circle


The aim of the dissertation is to develop further the students' ability independently to plan, research, formulate arguments and communicate research findings in a coherent manner within an extended piece of written work. The dissertation functions both as the culmination of the year's work and as a bridge between guided and independent research, preparing (and, it is hoped, encouraging) students to continue on to carry out research at DPhil level.

The topic of the dissertation will usually be based on, and develop from, work undertaken on one or more of the four coursework modules undertaken in the course of the MA


Contact hours

Total Contact Hours: 9
Private Study Hours: 591
Total Study hours: 600

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods

• Dissertation (12,000 words) – 100%

Reassessment methods

• Reassessment Instrument: 100% Project

Indicative reading

Indicative Reading List

Litoselliti, Lia (2009) Research Methods in Linguistics. London: Continuum;
Griffin, Gabrielle (2005) Research Methods for English Studies. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

1 Put into practice, collate and write-up the results of qualitative and quantitative data collection methods for language research, including but not limited to: recording and
transcribing, observation and field notes, action research, questionnaires and surveys, discourse completion task questionnaires, role plays and simulations ;
2 Present linguistic data appropriately by means of charts, graphs, tables, matrices, diagrams and quotations;
3 Evaluate and interpret data, develop lines of argument, and make sound judgments in accordance with the central theories and analytical concepts in linguistics and its
sub-fields as studied in the coursework modules;
4 Assess the merits of contrasting theories and explanations, including those from other disciplines;
5 Demonstrate in-depth and advanced subject-specific knowledge of a particular specialized area of linguistics or language research, e.g. the structure and variety of
language, stylistics, language learning and teaching, intercultural and intercommunity language issues, discourse analysis, conversation analysis, discourse theory;
6 Engage in critical reflection, verbal discussion and written and interpretative analysis of key material.

The intended generic learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

1 Engage in critical reflection, verbal discussion and written analysis of various core theoretical texts, gathered research data, exemplar texts, secondary critical
commentary and analysis and to devise and sustain arguments relating to this analysis using ideas and techniques at the current forefront of the discipline;
2 Demonstrate the ability to undertake sustained and high-level independent research and learning and reflect critically on their own academic work;
3 Present sustained cogent arguments, predominantly in written form but also orally during tutorials and supervisions;
4 Deploy high-level problem-solving skills over the course of the research and its writing up.


  1. Credit level 7. Undergraduate or postgraduate masters level module.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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