Experimental Design and Methods for Behavioural Science ECON5144

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: Adam Smith Business School
  • Credits: 10
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: No

Short Description

The course covers concepts, methods and principles for learning how to design and implement experimental projects either in a real word setting or in laboratories. Additionally, the course will focus on experimental good practices, ethical concerns, transparency and reproducibility of experimental research.


Lectures (4x2hours) in 4 consecutive weeks. These are interactive lectures that include asynchronous quizzes to help students with their preparation.

Workshop (1x2hours) in 1 week.

Tutorials (2x1hour) in alternate weeks.

On campus.

Requirements of Entry

Please refer to the current postgraduate prospectus at: http://www.gla.ac.uk/postgraduate/.

Excluded Courses








Word length/Duration




800 words 

Main Assessment In: April/May

Course Aims

The course aims to:

- introduce the main concepts and techniques for conducting various types of experiments on human behaviour, from the experimental design up to its implementation.

- present students with the following topics: elements of an experiment, types of research design, causality, differences between online, lab and field experiments, pre-analysis, power analysis, pre-registration, ethical approval form, reproducibility, and transparency.

- provide students with the theoretical toolbox to allow them to develop their experimental studies in their academic and non-academic futures.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

1. Compare and analyse the different types of experimental research design.

2. Develop and convert an idea into research questions and formulated hypotheses.

3. Demonstrate the ability to apply for a justifiable ethical approval of an experiment. 

4. Compose experiment pre-registration form

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.