Arts and Sciences (BASc)


BASC0002 Interdisciplinary Research Methods

Data collection is the heart of research. It’s easy to be misled by the overwhelming amount of information available today. However, quantity and quality are not the same, and finding reliable, relevant information requires skill. Translating information into data requires other skills. This module focuses on data within the context of interdisciplinary research: data accumulation, sorting, assessing, and combining to create meaning. We’ll direct our attention towards specific real-world problems. We’ll use a broad spectrum of interdisciplinary tools to construct relevant data sets. We’ll investigate ways to think critically about quality and relevance. We’ll also apply our data to propose solutions that might just change the world.

The cohort is divided into seminar groups, and seminar groups are subdivided into teams. Each team is assigned one element of a larger problem given to the seminar. The term is spent in skill development, then undertaking tasks associated with assessed individual and team projects.

Lectures cover general themes in the module, relate the work to fundamental concepts of research, data, and reflection. Seminars are used for specific skill development, critical analysis, and project development.

This course is taught in Term 2 of Year 1.

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By the end of the module, students should be able to:

  • complete a planned programme of work
  • demonstrate a variety of specific research skills to produce coherent data sets relevant to assigned problems
  • consider data sets for relevance and quality
  • apply data sets to problem solving
  • produce research reports both as an individual and within the context of teams, working to tight deadlines and using a mixture of media
  • produce a reflective self and peer assessment
  • relate interdisciplinary project work to theoretical concepts in interdisciplinary studies.


The course runs for three hours per week in Term 2 of Year 1 as follows:

Lecturers:Dr Thomas Kador and Clare Lewis
Lecture:1-2pm on Mondays AND 1-2pm on Thursdays
Seminars*:4-5pm on Mondays or 12-1pm on Tuesdays or 4-5pm on Tuesdays or 9-10am on Wednesdays or 10-11am on Wednesdays or 10-11am on Thursdays or 12-1pm on Thursdays or 10-11am on Fridays or 11am-12pm on Fridays or 12-1pm on Fridays
Module level:Level 4
Credit value:15 credits

 * Students are automatically allocated to a seminar class, so it is not possible to select one. It is also not possible to request a change to your seminar class allocation unless you have a clash with another module.

Assessment (2018/19)

  1. 1,500 words coursework - 40%
  2. 20 page group proposal - 40%
  3. 15 minute group video diary - 10%
  4. 20 minute group viva - 10%

Assessment (2019/20)

  1. 1,500 words coursework - 40%
  2. 20 page group proposal, including peer assessment - 40%
  3. 15 minute group video diary - 10%
  4. 20 minute group presentation - 10%

Students enrolled on the module can find further details can be found on Moodle.