Surrey University Stag


Module code: GCAM007

Module Overview

This module enables participants to interrogate and evaluate higher education research that they have encountered in previous modules. This module tries to disrupt their beliefs with respect to educational research within and across disciplines. In particular, students are encouraged to assess the validity of findings for a particular research area through the lens of various epistemological, theoretical and methodological perspectives. This module is a good complement to the “Researching in Higher Education” and “Research Dissertation” modules. Students will work collaboratively sharing their evaluation of research and reflecting on viewing research through different lens.

Module provider

Surrey Institute of Education

Module Leader

HOSEIN Anesa (Sy Inst Educ)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

JACs code: X300

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 133

Seminar Hours: 11

Guided Learning: 6

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

Not applicable

Module content

Indicative content includes:

  •         Epistemological perspectives: e.g. normative, interpretive and critical theory paradigms

  •         Methodological approaches: e.g. ethnography, experiments, longitudinal surveys, mixed methods, phenomenology

  •         Theoretical approaches: e.g. constructivism, behaviourism, socio-culturalism, cognitivism

  •         Disciplinary perspectives: e.g. sciences, arts, humanities, medical sciences

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework WRITTEN REPORT (2,000 - 2,500 WORDS) 80

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate that they are able to meet the learning outcomes by judging their peers on their evaluation of research studies within Higher Education and reflecting on the process, the merits and challenges of evaluating research. 


Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • Peer assessment: Students grade each other based on their ability to methodologically evaluate research papers and provide feedback to other peers (peer assessment ≈ 500 words) (LO1, LO2, LO4)

  • Reflection/ Evaluation report: Reflective analysis on using different perspectives (methodology, theoretical, epistemological, disciplinary) for understanding the research impact of studies in an area of interest (2000 to 2500 words) (LO1,  LO3, LO4)

  • Alternative assessment to Peer assessment – Summary of Evaluations: Students submit an annotated portfolio of three related journal articles along with a 500 word narrative which provides a critical evaluation on the methodological approaches (LO1, LO2, LO4).


Assessment Deadlines

Summative Submission:

  • Peer Assessment: Weeks 5, 8, 11, Semester 1

  • Reflection/Evaluation Report: Week 13, Semester 1


Formative Submission: Week 8, Semester 1


Formative assessment and feedback

Students will be required to submit three 100 word discussion forum posts or 1 minute audio file, on the evaluations of research studies to their peers during the semester. They will receive anonymous peer feedback on all three. Students will receive general feedback on all submissions. For the second submission students will also receive individual feedback (either written / audio). For the second submission, students will also be asked to post a reflection.

Module aims

  • Disrupts participants' beliefs in accepting educational research
  • Encourage participants to question higher education research or practices using different perspectives
  • Encourage an evidence-based culture amongst the participants

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001  Evaluate the validity of methodological approaches in educational research CT
002 Prepare critical feedback on different perspectives of research which includes feedback to their peers  PT
003 Reflect on the validity of research from different theoretical lens KC
004 Assess the impact of research findings  CPT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to provide students with a safe environment to work collaboratively and critique both experts’ and novices’ work. The strategy aligns with the programme strategy as it allows students to respect disciplinary research approaches but also question how these differing approaches shape and transform higher education. 

The learning and teaching methods include:

  •         Formal Online Interactions:

o   Pre-entry and Mid-Semester Questionnaires (1 hour)

o   Synchronous/Asynchronous Seminar Discussions (1 hour x 10 weeks)

  •         Guided Study/ Recorded Lectures (2 hours x 3 weeks)

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: GCAM007

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Higher Education MA 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2023/4 academic year.