Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE Research Methods

LEVEL 02 - Years 2, 3 in Modular Undergraduate Course


DEPARTMENT Computer Information Systems

DESCRIPTION Students will cover Research Methods, including writing a literature review and different aspects of approaches to research and evaluation. The unit will also delve into basics of documentation writing.
Fundamental knowledge of project management, including the various roles of members on a project team, their responsibilities and way of cooperation with other team members, will be included.
Students will also be taught how to analyse and address ethical issues that might arise in the course of this project and their future careers.

Study-unit Aims:

- To expose students to essential research and reading techniques; how to choose a project and how to write a proposal; how to write a literature review; writing and referencing styles; presenting results. The unit will also take a practical perspective towards achieving this;
- To introduce concepts and get experience with a teamwork on a particular sample project;
- To create an awareness in the ICT professionals of tomorrow of the kinds of ethical issues that can emerge in the development of new information systems -- both when working on one's own, or as part of a larger project team.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Draft a research proposal;
- Draft a project plan;
- Search for and use relevant literature;
- Correctly reference literature;
- Conduct evaluations;
- Compose an abstract of research conducted;
- Structure a research project;
- Understanding the benefits and Challenges of working in a Team;
- Explain and describe operation of a team working on a project, roles and responsibilities of members on a team;
- Awareness of ethical issues during design/operation of computer based systems.

2. Skills
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Research Problem Identification and formulation;
- Proposal preparation;
- Data collection and analysis;
- Write a literature review with correct citations and references;
- Write up a proposal and write up the research;
- To act correctly as team player in different roles;
- Conduct an ethical analysis and decide how to address any emerging issues.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

Main Text/s

- Dawson, C.W. (2009) Projects in Computing and Information Systems: A Student’s Guide, 2nd Revised Edition, edition, Addison-Wesley, Harlow ISBN: 978-0-273-72131-4.
- Hackman, J.R. (2011) Collaborative Intelligence: Using Teams to Solve Hard Problems, BERRETT-KOEHLER, San Francisco/US, ISBN 13: 9781605099903, ISBN 10: 1605099902.

Supplementary readings

- Nicholas Walliman, Research Methods: The Basics, Routledge; 1 edition, ISBN-10: 0415489946, ISBN-13: 978-0415489942.
- Bennett, L. M.; Gadlin H.; Levine –Finley, S. (2010) Collaboration & Team Science: A Field Guide, NIH Office of the Ombudsman, Center for Cooperative Resolution, Bethesda, Maryland.
- Hackman, J.R. (2011) Leading Teams: Setting the Stage for Great Performances, Harvard Business Press, ISBN-10: 1578513332, ISBN-13: 978-1578513338.

STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture, Ind Study, Group Learning and Tutorials

Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Assignment SEM2 Yes 100%

LECTURER/S John M. Abela
Ernest A. Cachia
Michel Camilleri
Lalit Garg (Co-ord.)
Peter Albert Xuereb

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the description above applies to study-units available during the academic year 2020/1. It may be subject to change in subsequent years.