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Unit information: Dissertation/Practice-led Project (Medieval Studies) in 2021/22

Unit name Dissertation/Practice-led Project (Medieval Studies)
Unit code AFACM0010
Credit points 60
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Academic Year (weeks 1 - 52)
Unit director Dr. Pohl
Open unit status Not open

Completion of relevant mandatory units in TB1 and TB2 and progress at the June Progress Board



School/department School of Humanities
Faculty Faculty of Arts

Description including Unit Aims

All MA students are expected to undertake a capstone project as the culmination of the programme of study. The dissertation/practice-led project provides a structured and supervised opportunity for MA students to pursue independently an agreed topic of interest with reference to and emerging from their previous studies and to produce an appropriately advanced piece of research. The dissertation/practice-led project involves devising a realisable topic, which has the potential to contribute to knowledge of the subject. Students on the MA Medieval Studies may EITHER:

  1. Undertake a research-led dissertation of 15,000 words: After a conducting a survey of literature and other relevant materials, in particular medieval primary sources, appropriate methodologies will be devised in order to explore a research problem. It would normally be expected that this topic would arise from work already undertaken on the programme, creating an opportunity to explore a specialist area in more detail.


  1. Undertake a practice-led project of 15,000 words or equivalent related to a work placement (typically that taken as one of the taught component options): After carrying out a piece of practice-led research for a heritage or cultural organisation, the student delivers the result of that research and practice in the style of (or accompanied by) a reflective critical commentary or report, setting out planning, methodology, analysis, results and implementation as appropriate.


  1. To facilitate in-depth independent research
  2. To establish a potential path for further advanced research (either in the workplace or further study)
  3. To explore and develop appropriate methodological approaches
  4. To gain in-depth knowledge of a specialist area
  5. To present the findings in a written dissertation/practice-led project report.

Intended Learning Outcomes

By the end of this unit, students will be able to

  1. distinguish between a range of different research methods
  2. synthesise existing work on a particular subject
  3. use secondary and primary materials in order to provide a focus for independent inquiry
  4. design a project that is realistic in scope
  5. demonstrate substantial knowledge of a specific subject area
  6. present the findings and outcomes of research in a sustained written format appropriate to the mode of their capstone project (e.g. dissertation or practice-led project)
  7. communicate their knowledge and research to academic and professional audiences as appropriate to the mode of their capstone project (e.g. dissertation or practice-led project)

Teaching Information

Initial advice and discussion on conducting research projects at postgraduate level

Regular supervision sessions.

Assessment Information

By written dissertation or practice-led project and report [15,000 words or equivalent] (100%)

Linked to ILOs 1-7


If this unit has a Resource List, you will normally find a link to it in the Blackboard area for the unit. Sometimes there will be a separate link for each weekly topic.

If you are unable to access a list through Blackboard, you can also find it via the Resource Lists homepage. Search for the list by the unit name or code (e.g. AFACM0010).

How much time the unit requires
Each credit equates to 10 hours of total student input. For example a 20 credit unit will take you 200 hours of study to complete. Your total learning time is made up of contact time, directed learning tasks, independent learning and assessment activity.

See the Faculty workload statement relating to this unit for more information.

The Board of Examiners will consider all cases where students have failed or not completed the assessments required for credit. The Board considers each student's outcomes across all the units which contribute to each year's programme of study. If you have self-certificated your absence from an assessment, you will normally be required to complete it the next time it runs (this is usually in the next assessment period).
The Board of Examiners will take into account any extenuating circumstances and operates within the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes.