Clinical and Health Research Dissertation HEA4074


The dissertation module provides students with the opportunity to undertake indepth and extended research into their chosen area of interest. Through consultation with an appropriate supervisor (or team of supervisors), it allows students to develop a detailed and sustained line of analysis that is personal to their research interests. Developing both oral and written skills, the module will foster guided independent inquiry that will culminate in a critical work of substantial length and sustained inquiry.

Module Code: HEA4074
Level: 7
Credits: 120
Cost: Incorporated in MRes course fee presently £4620 Price for Sept 2019 to Jul 2020

Who is this module for?

Students must have passed HEA 4065 and HEA 4066 or have the equivalent via RPEL.

What are the key aims of the programme?

The true test of a postgraduate's research and critical abilities is the production of a sustained piece of critical work that engages clearly and closely in a scholarly investigation of a specific area of interest. Accordingly, the Clinical & Health Research Dissertation module is designed to encourage, support and assist students to pursue independent research into the subject matter of their choice developed in consultation with their supervisor(s). They will also be expected to demonstrate a conceptual appreciation of current critical and theoretical debates in their particular research subject.

Moreover, the dissertation allows students to demonstrate how effective their learning has been and how capable they have become in ensuring the persuasiveness and cogency of their written work. It provides space for enhancing their critical thinking skills through independent and original research. In addition to honing their subject-specific research skills, students will continue to develop their transferable written and oral abilities. The development of such skills will be particularly valuable to individuals intending to disseminate their work through presentation or publication, or wishing to pursue further academic studies

What will I study?

As this module fosters guided independent learning, the indicative primary content will vary from student to student. The module's content will be developed in consultation with the student's supervisor (or team of supervisors), from initial planning through to the completion of the dissertation project. Each student's supervisor will recommend primary and secondary material that is best suited to the student's research interests.

How will I be assessed?

The dissertation will be examined as a 25,000 word written document and also by means of a viva voce examination. The viva will be attended by a member of staff in the appropriate discipline acting as an internal examiner (other than the student’s dissertation supervisor) and an external examiner with expertise in the subject area.

On successful completion you will:

1 Identify, plan and undertake their own piece of research or investigative enquiry related to the student’s area of professional practice.
2 Articulate knowledge and understanding of, and critically examine a range of factors impacting on, or relevant to, their MRes research topic.
3 Critically justify the choice of methodology and underpinning theory, including selection study design, methods of data collection and data analysis.
4 Synthesise findings from their own study with the research and scholarship of others, highlighting the strengths, limitations and implications for future study and/or investigation and potential impact.
5 Critically appraise the ethical considerations encountered during the course of their project demonstrating adherence to appropriate ethics and governance processes.
6 Defend academically and rigorously their dissertation through examination by viva voce

Study Dates and Venues

Further Information

Module availability varies from year to year and will be subject to minimum student numbers being achieved. Places will be allocated on a first come first served basis. Due to the popularity of some modules it may be that the module is fully booked when your application is received. We will include your details on a waiting list and allocate you a place on the next available intake

If you have any other queries about studying with us, please see the FAQs

This module is arranged by appointment with module co-ordinator, as per below.
For further information regarding module content, please contact Module Coordinator Louise Cope on 01695 657074 (email


This module cannot be studied on a standalone basis. It is a core module on the

  • MHealth Res Master of Health Research
  • MClin Res Master of Clinical Research