THE PROJECT - 2025/6

Module code: BMSM013

Module Overview

This module allows the student to engage in an in-depth major project in an area relevant for nutritional science in the 21st Century. Projects may involve direct data collection, analysis of pre-existing datasets or “big-data”, systematic reviews/meta-analysis or involve writing a research grant application to answer a pertinent nutritional question. Students may be attached to NHS units, to staff or research teams within the Department of Nutritional Sciences, but also in other areas in the wider University, including psychology. Students will be guided to undertake a project in an area of interest and allocated an appropriate University supervisor(s).

Module provider

School of Biosciences

Module Leader

Number of Credits: 45

ECTS Credits: 22.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

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

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 225

Guided Learning: 225

Module Availability

Crosses academic years

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

Students must have completed BMSM001 (Principles of Nutritional Science) and BMSM002 (Principles of Applied Nutrition and Epidemiology) in addition to any two other optional modules before being enrolled onto the module. As this 45 credit module is intended to uplift from the diploma to the full MSc, submission cannot be made until 9 taught modules have been completed successfully. 

Module content

This module is an independent piece of work although there is the option of working as a pair of students on a data collection project, but with independent assessment. Information will be made available to all those students that have successfully completed 4 modules. The student then has the option to liaise with the MO/programme director (PD) to discuss potential topics of interest. The student will then be allocated an internal University supervisor(s) who will help the student develop their idea and project plan before completing and submitting the project approval form (PAF) to the MO. Once approved the student will be officially enrolled onto the module. The module will begin formally each October, with submission by the following September.

The supervisor will guide the student through the planning and execution of their research project. There will be regular documented progress meetings between supervisor and student for formative feedback on both progress and written work. This will be re-enforced by captured content available on SurreyLearn on aspects such as study design, the use of statistics, literature searching and critical reading.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Practical based assessment SUPERVISOR ASSESSMENT 10
Oral exam or presentation PROJECT PRESENTATION 10
Project (Group/Individual/Dissertation) WRITTEN SCIENTIFIC PAPER 80

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate a variety of research skills: advanced subject knowledge in a topical area; engagement and initiative in managing a research project; taking on and responding to feedback; independent thought and initiative; oral presentation and defense of research ideas and advanced writing skills.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • A supervisor mark based on engagement with the process, initiative and independence.

  • A short presentation on the project (over zoom/Teams) to fellow students and staff

  • A written research paper (word limit provided via assessment brief)

Formative assessment:

Formative feedback on the proposal will be provided by the MO, PD and potential supervisor during the process of completing the Project Approval Form (PAF). Written and verbal feedback on the written research paper and presentation content will also be provided by the supervisor prior to the final submission.


Feedback on the assessment will be provided after the awarding exam board. This can not be provided earlier due to this being the final assessment in the MSc and University regulations preventing the student from calculating their final degree classification prior to ratification by SPACE.

Module aims

  • To build on experience in information retrieval relevant to a specific topic of research
  • To acquire and develop specific practical research skills
  • To develop and expand the student's capacity for independent investigation
  • To develop written and oral presentation skills applicable to the dissemination of original research findings in the scientific arena

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 A full appreciation of the use electronic databases in research and the ability to undertake systematic literature searches and information gathering PT
002 An opportunity to be able to critically interpret, assess and appraise the relevance of scientific literature KCPT
003 To be able to disseminate research findings, both orally and in written format to a scientific audience PT
004 To gain in-depth subject knowledge in an aspect of human nutrition of interest to the student K
005 To engage in a project from inception of an idea, through planning and execution to dissemination of the findings KCPT

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 facilitate all parts of the research process from inception/planning through the development, execution and dissemination of a piece of novel nutritional research. Engagement and research discussion with the supervisor is therefore a key element in the process, and they will facilitate the student to develop independent thought and demonstrate initiative in the direction of the work. If appropriate the student will be guided through the process of good laboratory and clinical practice; data collection, storage and analysis.

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: BMSM013

Other information

Employability: In this module, students are mentored and encouraged to employ their knowledge of nutrition and research methodology and apply to a current knowledge gap relevant to nutritional medicine. Students have the freedom to choose their own topic, and this may be relevant to a current employment role or future career aspirations within the nutrition field.  The skills involved in the design, execution and dissemination of research and/or ideas are highly applicable to any workplace.

Resourcefulness and Resilience:   The teaching/mentorship of this module provides a scaffold around which students need to apply their knowledge and resourcefulness to problem solve and demonstrate innovation in designing a project to answer a self-proposed research question. 

Digital Capabilities: Students will utilise collaborative tools (Teams, Zoom) to communicate with their supervisor (as they are off-site) and receive and respond to feedback. Depending on the project design, digital tools may be used collect data (for example Qualtrics) and to establish nutritional requirements and create nutritional recommendations.

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Nutritional Medicine MSc Cross Year Core Each unit of assessment must be passed at 50% 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 2025/6 academic year.