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Session: 2022/23

Last modified: 22/11/2022 09:02:33

Title of Module: Research Methods 1

Code: SPOR08021 SCQF Level: 8
(Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework)
Credit Points: 20 ECTS: 10
(European Credit Transfer Scheme)
School:School of Health and Life Sciences
Module Co-ordinator:Dave  Grant

Summary of Module

Effective research method skills are essential in the research process for any sport student. These methods provide rationale for research investigation and projects aiding in successful design, implementation and data analysis.  These skills allow students to answer the “how, what and why” questions that sport students ask throughout their degrees and beyond in professional practice.

This module will introduce students to critical aspects of research analysis. Students will develop knowledge in the scope and defining features of research design and processes of both quantitative and qualitative types of investigations. This will include the main areas of study design and specialist knowledge with regards the research purpose. Concepts of research ethics will also be outlined and introduced to the student. An introduction to more advanced data analysis and statistical analysis will be provided.

The teaching material will build upon the content delivered at L7 'introductory' modules and the L7 Dealing with Data in Sport and Exercise module. Students will gain knowledge in the main areas and core theories of research disciplines in preparation to progress and develop these during the Level 9 Research Methods 2 module.

General syllabus detail, (but not limited to):

  • Topic 1 – Critical analysis of research.
  • Topic 2 – The literature review process.
  • Topic 3 – Developing hypothesis, aims and objectives.
  • Topic 4 – Research design and developing research questions.
  • Topic 5 – Ethics in Research.
  • Topic 6 – Research proposals.
  • Topic 7 – Handling data.
  • Topic 8 – Data and statistical analysis (quantitative and qualitative methods).

Module Delivery Method
Face-To-FaceBlendedFully OnlineHybridCHybridOWork-based Learning
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Term used to describe the traditional classroom environment where the students and the lecturer meet synchronously in the same room for the whole provision.

A mode of delivery of a module or a programme that involves online and face-to-face delivery of learning, teaching and assessment activities, student support and feedback. A programme may be considered “blended” if it includes a combination of face-to-face, online and blended modules. If an online programme has any compulsory face-to-face and campus elements it must be described as blended with clearly articulated delivery information to manage student expectations

Fully Online
Instruction that is solely delivered by web-based or internet-based technologies. This term is used to describe the previously used terms distance learning and e learning.

Online with mandatory face-to-face learning on Campus

Online with optional face-to-face learning on Campus

Work-based Learning
Learning activities where the main location for the learning experience is in the workplace.

Campus(es) for Module Delivery
The module will normally be offered on the following campuses / or by Distance/Online Learning: (Provided viable student numbers permit)
Paisley:Ayr:Dumfries:Lanarkshire:London:Distance/Online Learning:Other:


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Term(s) for Module Delivery
(Provided viable student numbers permit).
Term 1


Term 2check markTerm 3


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Learning Outcomes: (maximum of 5 statements)

On successful completion of this module the student will be able to:

L1. Discuss research design including hypothesis planning, development of research questions and study design into a research proposal.

L2. Demonstrate applied data handling and analytical skills as well as introductory statistical analysis skills.

L3. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of research processes of both quantitative and qualitative design and content; in addition to basic concepts of ethics.

Employability Skills and Personal Development Planning (PDP) Skills
SCQF Headings During completion of this module, there will be an opportunity to achieve core skills in:
Knowledge and Understanding (K and U) SCQF Level 8.

Students will exhibit knowledge of various research methodologies applied to a number of sport and exercise disciplines. Students will display knowledge of information processing, physical activity initiatives and a commercial appreciation of the fitness industry.

Practice: Applied Knowledge and Understanding SCQF Level 8.

Students will undertake the collection and interpretation of routine physiological data. Students will record data accurately and carry out basic manipulation of data (including qualitative data and some statistical analysis, when appropriate). Practical knowledge in assessing potential risk factors within the sport, health and fitness industry will also be given. These will be of a context in line with appropriate health and safety standards.

Generic Cognitive skills SCQF Level 8.

Students will undertake a critical and objective approach to problem identification and formulation of evidence-based solutions. This will involve critical evaluation of biological and physiological information

Communication, ICT and Numeracy Skills SCQF Level 8.

Students will further develop skills in relation to collation of information, interpretation and communication verbally and in written form, complex information using a standard range of applications and procedures (e.g. Word, Excel, PowerPoint and SPSS applications). Students will develop a basic appreciation of quantitative and qualitative methods of data collection and analysis. Student will also convey complex information through the routine use of IT for the presentation and manipulation of physiological data.

Autonomy, Accountability and Working with others SCQF Level 8.

Students will take responsibility for, and identifying own learning needs, seeking and undertaking appropriate guided learning and planning the achievement of identified goals both independently and as part of a group. Students will also prioritise, manage time and work to deadlines. Finally, students will exercise initiative in undertaking laboratory reports and other written material in a timely manner.

Pre-requisites: Before undertaking this module the student should have undertaken the following:
Module Code:
Module Title:
Co-requisitesModule Code:
Module Title:

* Indicates that module descriptor is not published.

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Learning and Teaching
Learning Activities
During completion of this module, the learning activities undertaken to achieve the module learning outcomes are stated below:
Student Learning Hours
(Normally totalling 200 hours):
(Note: Learning hours include both contact hours and hours spent on other learning activities)
Asynchronous Class Activity18
Tutorial/Synchronous Support Activity6
Laboratory/Practical Demonstration/Workshop12
Independent Study164
200 Hours Total

**Indicative Resources: (eg. Core text, journals, internet access)

The following materials form essential underpinning for the module content and ultimately for the learning outcomes:

Smith, M.F. (2010) Research methods in sport. Learning Matters, Exeter.

Tenenbaum, G (2005). Methods of research in sport sciences: quantitative and qualitative approaches. Meyer & Meyer Sport, Oxford.

Gratton, C (2004) Research methods for sport studies. Routledge, London

McNamee, M (2008) Research ethics in exercise, health and sport sciences.

(**N.B. Although reading lists should include current publications, students are advised (particularly for material marked with an asterisk*) to wait until the start of session for confirmation of the most up-to-date material)

Engagement Requirements

In line with the Academic Engagement Procedure, Students are defined as academically engaged if they are regularly engaged with timetabled teaching sessions, course-related learning resources including those in the Library and on the relevant learning platform, and complete assessments and submit these on time. Please refer to the Academic Engagement Procedure at the following link: Academic engagement procedure

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Supplemental Information

Programme BoardSport and Exercise
Assessment Results (Pass/Fail) No
Subject PanelSport & Exercise L7-11
ModeratorTom Macpherson
External ExaminerA Tocknell
Accreditation Details
Version Number


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Assessment: (also refer to Assessment Outcomes Grids below)
Presentation of a research proposal. Group poster presentation worth 40%. The poster will cover topics 1 to 4 demonstrating knowledge and understanding of the research process in a study design topic of the student group’s choosing. This will assess learning outcome 1.
A class test lasting 1.5 hours assessing learning outcomes 2 and 3 worth 60%. This will comprise of a mix of multiple choice and short answer exam questions.
(N.B. (i) Assessment Outcomes Grids for the module (one for each component) can be found below which clearly demonstrate how the learning outcomes of the module will be assessed.
(ii) An indicative schedule listing approximate times within the academic calendar when assessment is likely to feature will be provided within the Student Handbook.)

Assessment Outcome Grids (Footnote A.)

Component 1
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Demonstrations/ Poster presentations/ Exhibitionscheck mark  401

Component 2
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Class test (written) check markcheck mark601.5
Combined Total For All Components100% 2.5 hours

A. Referred to within Assessment Section above
B. Identified in the Learning Outcome Section above

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  1. More than one assessment method can be used to assess individual learning outcomes.
  2. Schools are responsible for determining student contact hours. Please refer to University Policy on contact hours (extract contained within section 10 of the Module Descriptor guidance note).
    This will normally be variable across Schools, dependent on Programmes &/or Professional requirements.

Equality and Diversity
This module is appropriate for any student. Students with enabling needs support will be accommodated the fullest extent possible.
UWS Equality and Diversity Policy
(N.B. Every effort will be made by the University to accommodate any equality and diversity issues brought to the attention of the School)

2014 University of the West of Scotland

University of the West of Scotland is a Registered Scottish Charity.

Charity number SC002520.