The Research Methods and Project Management course will introduce you to the principles of scientific research, and methods relating to qualitative and quantitative research undertaken in relation to food quality and health. Through a series of online lectures and seminars, you will explore the principle components of undertaking research, from the development of research plans, the practical steps in implementing these plans, and the statistical tools available for assessing the collected data. The aim is to provide you with all of the knowledge, methods and skills necessary to design, carry out, and assess a research project, whether in a higher education or professional setting.
You will also develop useful skills in reviewing and assessing scientific literature and handling ethical matters arising from certain types of research. In addition, you will learn transferable skills such as project management, time management methods and stakeholder analysis that have broad applicability outside of their use in relation to research projects. After completing this course you will be fully capable of undertaking research projects, from initial conception to practical management to detailed analysis of findings.
This is a required course for those studying for MSc, MRes or DAgriFood degrees, but would be extremely useful for anyone intending to carry out research in any capacity in their business or field of study.
On completion of the course participants should be able to:
The following transferable skills will be developed in this course:
The course will consist of ten weeks of distance learning material, including video lectures, guided reading, interactive workbooks and online discussion boards. Discussion and feedback will take place through the Virtual Learning Environment associated with the course and e-mail.
The course will be assessed by 4 pieces of coursework.
1) Quantitative analysis of a dataset using appropriate statistical methods (20%)
2) A critical literature review (limited to 2000 words) that summarises the major approaches that have been used to date to address a given research issue (30%)
3) A 10-minute presentation critically evaluating an original research paper, the presentation will be done at distance using screen capture technology (20%)
4) Research-based project. Each participant will be given the task to solve a specific problem for a company (problems may be real or fictitious). Each participant will prepare a report that describes: (i) the nature and background of the research problem; (ii) proposed research to address problem with justification; (iii) implementation plan and resource requirements. (30%)
AgriFood Training Partnership
The University of Reading
PO Box 226, Whiteknights
Reading RG6 6AP
T. +44 (0)330 333 4530