Please note: there may be some adjustments to the teaching arrangements published in the course catalogue for 2020-21. Given current circumstances related to the Covid-19 pandemic it is anticipated that some usual arrangements for teaching on campus will be modified to ensure the safety and wellbeing of students and staff on campus; further adjustments may also be necessary, or beneficial, during the course of the academic year as national requirements relating to management of the pandemic are revised.

Researching Human Geography: Design, Methods and Ethics GEOG5022

  • Academic Session: 2022-23
  • School: School of Geographical and Earth Sciences
  • Credits: 40
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Runs Throughout Semesters 1 and 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes
  • Available to Erasmus Students: Yes

Short Description

This course provides students with a range of quantitative and qualitative research methods and their applicability in different research settings


Semester 1: Tuesdays 3:30-4:30pm; Semester 2: Tuesdays 3:30-6:30pm

Requirements of Entry

Permission of Head of Department


Class essay (week 15)

Oral presentation (week 23)

Project (week 27)

Main Assessment In: April/May

Course Aims

■ developing an awareness of a range of quantitative and qualitative research methods and their applicability in different research settings;

■ enabling students to undertake an independent research based dissertation that provides a sound basis for doctoral research and an opportunity to develop a conceptual basis to their research.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of the course the student the student should be able to:

■ provide a critical stance on the appropriate use of different research methods (e.g. quantitative, qualitative, archival and GIS) in the context of geographical inquiry;

■ explain the use of relevant concepts and methods, in researching particular 'real world' situations of space, policy and power (particularly in an independent dissertation);

■ analyse the ethics surrounding 'field' research in many different worldly contexts, comparing and contrasting the ethical implications of research in developed and 'developing' countries;

■ provide evidence, through essay and dissertation writing, and oral presentation of independent critical thought;

■ analyse the specificities of people and place, using suitable concepts and methods within (and with reference to) different 'real world' contexts;

■ provide evidence of the ability to organise work schedules, with particular reference to background research and coursework submission.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Attendance at all seminars and completion of assessed coursework