Module code: MANM357

Module Overview

An applied research dissertation is a core part and the final aspect of MSc programme, enabling students to develop an independent piece of work in subject area that is particularly interesting to them, supervised by a member of faculty.

The dissertation must comprise:

An academic dissertation: identifying an applied topic of interest, identifying a gap in the literature, and developing and carrying our research to investigate or examine that gap.

Primary research: data collection and analysis (use of secondary data or other sources of data must be approved by you supervisors).

Fieldwork: research carried out in an organizational setting.

Practically relevant implications: addressing either a research gap that has clear implications for management practice.

Module provider

Surrey Business School

Module Leader


Number of Credits: 60

ECTS Credits: 30

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

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

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 586

Lecture Hours: 2

Seminar Hours: 3

Tutorial Hours: 4

Guided Learning: 3

Captured Content: 2

Module Availability

Year long

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

The applied research dissertation is completed through semesters 1 and 2 and the summer period, with bulk of the work on the dissertation being completed during the summer after Semester 2 exam period.

In Semester 1 will have an opportunity to acquaint themselves with key areas of research interests of People and Organizations department academic staff. By Week 11 in Semester 1 students must submit their first-choice project ideas and preferred supervisor’s name. Students will then be allocated to supervisors. Effort will be made to accommodate first-choices wherever possible.

Students are advised to plan and arrange their supervision meetings in a timely manner. A total of up to 4 supervision meetings will be available to students. It is the students’ responsibility to take advantage of these meetings.

Students will be invited to submit project proposals in Semester 2 via SurreyLearn, containing work in-progress of their dissertations and including clearly established research aims and questions/hypotheses, key arguments of literature review, outline of methodology and participant selection criteria. This is a formative assessment and supervisors will provide developmental feedback (written or verbal) to support students’ progress.

Students are required to have completed ethics review for their projects by the end of Week 13 in Semester 2. This includes obtaining approval letter in response to Ethics and Governance Application (EGA) if required. After this date, significant changes to research topic or aims will not be supported.

Supervisors may read one complete draft of the dissertation to provide further formative feedback if agreed in advance.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Project (Group/Individual/Dissertation) Applied Research Dissertation 100

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate: 

  • Ability to work as an independent, critical, and competent evidence-based practitioner

  • Ability to carry out primary applied research

  • Ability to report findings of applied research in writing clearly and effectively

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

Applied research dissertation which includes recommendations for organizations.

Formative assessment

Proposal submission which contains work in progress of the dissertation: introduction, literature review chapter, and methodology outline.


In writing and verbal feedback in one-to-one supervision.

Module aims

  • Enable students to develop a major piece of original independent work under the supervision of a member of faculty.
  • Guide students in applying research methods training from their MSc programme to conduct research in an organizational setting.
  • Provide students with experience of conceptualizing research problems, designing research studies, and conducting primary research work ethically and effectively.
  • Allow students to specialise their learning in an area that is relevant and interesting to them.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Understand in depth and provide insight into a relevant applied topic of academic interest. KC
002 Critically evaluate theories and research in the chosen topic area. KC
003 Synthesize and integrate extensive evidence from the research literature, to identify an original and novel gap to be addressed. C
004 Use theory to develop hypotheses or propositions to be tested or examined. C
005 Design and carry out appropriate methodology to examine the gap in the literature, justifying and evaluating chosen methods practically, technically, and ethically. KCP
006 Collect and analyse data. PT
007 Critically evaluate findings to draw sound practical conclusions. CT
008 Evaluate limitations in methodology and the dissertation, and their impact on conclusions CT
009 Write with clarity and precision to communicate the introduction, methodology, results and discussion. KPT
010 Successfully manage a major piece of project work independently. 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:

Enable students to develop as independent and competent evidence-based practitioners.

The learning and teaching methods include:

  • On-demand and introductory guidance sessions

  • One-to-one supervision and feedback

  • Independent written-work preparation

  • Fieldwork

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: MANM357

Other information

Pillars that map to this module:

• Resourcefulness and Resilience

This module enables students’ development to become independent critical thinkers, with expertise in selected subject area of academic and practitioner interest, capable to identify problems and apply scientific inquiry methods to obtain new knowledge aimed to address real-life organizational problems and enhance managerial practice.

• Employability

This module enables students to develop as evidence-based practitioners. In addition, this module provides opportunity to enhance critical and problem-solving skills, ability to apply knowledge in finding solutions for advancement of managerial practice, independently manage a project and own work, and effective written communication of complex ideas in writing.

• Digital Capabilities

This module enables students’ engagement with digital content, and development of ability to identify relevant and good quality sources of knowledge online.

• Sustainability

This module supports our students’ development of ability to influence a more sustainable future of work, as we consider wellbeing of working people and effective management of organizational performance, reducing waste of manpower, ill health, and societal costs.

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Human Resources Management MSc(YEAR LONG) Year-long Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Occupational and Organizational Psychology MSc(YEAR LONG) Year-long Core 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 2024/5 academic year.