Module code: MANM522

Module Overview

The dissertation is optional for all MSc programmes and is the final element of the programme, providing an opportunity for a sustained period of independent study and research. It allows students to concentrate on topics that are of particular interest to them and it draws upon a range of different aspects of the taught programme particularly the Research Methods for the Digital Age module (MANM497). Students can build upon their knowledge and topics learnt from programme-specific modules studies in semester 1 to develop and define their research idea and questions. It also gives an opportunity for students to work independently with an individual supervisor.

There are two forms of dissertations:

a) An academic dissertation. This form of dissertation follows the standard academic pattern of identifying a topic arising from a gap in the literature and developing a methodology to explore this area in-depth.

b) A business or applied dissertation. This form of dissertation starts with an emerging business problem, either provided by an industrial partner or with their co-operation in the process, and seeks to provide a research-based solution to or exploration of the problem.

All forms of the dissertation seek to develop the same learning outcomes and follow the same assessment criteria. In some cases, taught modules, in addition to Research Methods, may be pre-requisites of taking a particular form of dissertation so that students are adequately prepared.

Module provider

Hospitality & Tourism Management

Module Leader

KIM Yoo Ri (Hosp & Tour)

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: 590

Tutorial Hours: 10

Module Availability

Year long

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Students will identify a topic area of interest that they wish to develop further through their dissertation. This must be relevant to their programme of study. On the basis of this topic, students will be assigned a supervisor who will guide their work. The module is, however, largely based on self-directed study and research.

Assessment pattern

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

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to conduct and report independent research.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  •  A Dissertation (100%) – either academic or applied

Formative feedback will be provided through supervision. Students will arrange meetings with their supervisor to discuss the research problem and strategy, theoretical and methodological approaches, data collection and analyses, and receive feedback and support where needed.

Module aims

  • Undertake an original piece of research
  • Demonstrate an ability to select and define and focus upon a research (or business) problem
  • Develop and apply relevant and sound methodologies to analyse the identified problem
  • Develop recommendations and logical conclusions and acknowledge the limitations of research work
  • Demonstrate an awareness of any ethical dilemmas that arise in their research
  • Demonstrate the ability to undertake and effectively manage a significant research-based project

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Develop an in-depth understanding and insight of a relevant topic of specific interest CKPT
002 Critical engagement with existing literature relevant to their topic CKPT
003 Select appropriate methodologies and justify their use CKPT
004 Analyse and present data, and critically compare these with existing knowledge CKPT
005 Critically evaluate results to produce sound conclusions CKPT
006 Identify and explain modifications to existing knowledge structures and theoretical frameworks CKPT
007 Recognise and explain the limitations of their study, and identify new areas for investigation/new problems/new or alternative applications or methodological approaches CKPT
008 Synthesise many of the elements covered in the taught part of the programme CKPT
009 Demonstrate the ability to present a major piece of coherent work based on self-directed research CKPT
010 Develop resourcefulness and resilience through building an effective student-directed relationship with your supervisor to support your progress on your research PT
011 Engage with diverse global and cultural perspectives through the research and relationship with the supervisor PT

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 develop the students’ ability to conduct and report independent research. It builds on the Research Methods module, allowing students to gain experience of applying some of the principles and methods learned, and allows students to synthesise many of the elements covered in the taught part of the programme in the development of a research proposal to help students crystallise their ideas.

The module commences in the Spring Semester and is completed by early September of the same year.

The teaching and learning methods include research supervision and support by an experienced supervisor in more generic aspects of the process until two weeks before the deadline. Students will discuss initial ideas with their allocated supervisor, outlining the research (business) problem, research aim and objectives and their proposed research strategy – including theoretical approaches, and, as relevant, arrangements for data collection (e.g. fieldwork/online survey, interviews, observations, etc.), development of instruments and sample. Subsequent meetings may include discussing details of literature review, methodological approaches, how to organise data collection and structuring and writing the dissertation. Where necessary, students must obtain ethical approval prior to data collection. The supervisor will also comment and provide feedback on one complete draft of the student’s work.

SurreyLearn will be used as an information portal and will contain the dissertation handbook, useful videos, relevant resources and material to support students with their research. Online support sessions/workshops on research ethics, data analysis and dissertation writing will also be provided throughout the Spring semester and summer. Students are advised to refer to the Research Methods module materials and encouraged to also attend dissertation-related workshops provided by the Library.

Students are expected to take responsibility for their own learning within a supportive environment, developing self and project management skills along the way, building their resourcefulness and resilience.

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: MANM522

Other information

Surrey's Curriculum Framework is committed to developing postgraduates with strengths in Employability, Digital Capabilities, Global and Cultural Capabilities, Sustainability and Resourcefulness and Resilience. This module is designed to allow students to develop knowledge, skills and capabilities in the following areas:


Digital Capabilities: Learning to navigate the VLE, SurreyLearn, is an essential part of the module. Support materials are provided in a number of formats (e.g. captured content, documents) on SurreyLearn, and students are encouraged to communicate with their supervisor using collaborative tools (e.g. Zoom, Teams). Students will also build digital research capabilities through the use of online data collection methods (e.g. online questionnaires, online interviews) and data analysis software (e.g. SPSS, NVivo) as they undertake their research. Students will also have to manage long documents and referencing systems to complete their dissertation.


Employability: This module provides students with research skills that can be applied to market research and analytics in industry. By undertaking an original piece of research through this module, students will also build current awareness and understanding of both academic and industry trends and knowledge, which will equip them with their employability not only with recent knowledge but also critical appraisal and analytical skills that are applicable in problem-solving and decision making in a business.


Global and Cultural Capabilities: The module requires students to undertake and manage independent research with the support and guidance from their supervisor. Depending on the nature of the individual topic, supervisor’s expertise and student’s approach, students can build diverse global and cultural perspectives through their research. Students and supervisors can share experiences and knowledge from their own cultures and backgrounds to build the research, and to respect and value differences in experience.


Resourcefulness and Resilience: The module encourages a student-led learning approach where students take ownership of their learning and research and direct their relationship with their supervisor. Students will take responsibility for self-directing and regulating their research to develop their confidence in independent learning and research. This module not only builds on from the pre-requisite Research Methods module but also allows students to synthesise many of the elements covered in the taught part of the programme. This sets a balance between scaffolding their learning across-programme and stretching their problem-solving mindsets through independent learning.

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.