Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


CODE COU5141

 
TITLE Advanced Counselling Research Methods

 
LEVEL 05 - Postgraduate Modular Diploma or Degree Course

 
ECTS CREDITS 5

 
DEPARTMENT Counselling

 
DESCRIPTION This study-unit is intended to equip students with an advanced knowledge of the concepts and methods of counselling research, and consolidate their knowledge and enhance their experience in different methodologies and the use of various research techniques. Students will also be exposed to the use of computer packages to save, handle and analyse data. The aim is to give students the opportunity to discuss and reflect upon the research process as students and gain an in-depth knowledge of different methodologies, data collecting tools, theoretical underpinnings and conceptual frameworks.

Study-unit Outline:

- Introduction to Basic Principles in Counselling Research;
- Reviewing and critically analysing literature;
- Developing a Research Question and writing a research proposal;
- Research Ethics;
- Utilising Qualitative Methods;
- Utilising Quantitative Methods;
- Introduction to basic research tools;
- Exploring the implications of research;
- Critical Issues in Research;
- Writing up Research.

The student will:
- Develop an overall understanding of the issues involved in doing research in this area;
- Understand in more depth the different methodologies and methods in research including the philosophical assumptions underlying the different methodologies;
- Learn the skills of doing research in the context of practical problems that students may face in the research field;
- Become aware of issues of reliability, validity, bias and sampling.

Learning Outcomes

1. Knowledge and Understanding:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- Demonstrate an overall understanding of the issues involved in doing counselling research;
- Identify the different theoretical frameworks;
- Appraise the different methodologies and methods in research including the philosophical assumptions underlying the different methodologies;
- Discuss characteristics, advantages and limitations of major research designs;
- Identify the basic tenets of quantitative and qualitative research;
- Present issues of reliability, validity, bias and sampling of quantitative research;
- Demonstrate the rationale of quantitative and qualitative techniques;
- Show an understanding of the types of quantitative tests available;
- Compare and contrast descriptive versus inferential statistics;
- Discuss and deliberate ethical issues in research.

2. Skills:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- Demonstrate the skills of doing research in the context of practical problems that students may face in the research field;
- Analyse the appropriate selection of research methodologies and research tools;
- Illustrate an understanding of the research tools available in quantitative and qualitative research;
- Utilise data collecting tools appropriately, including interviews, focus groups, interview conversations, field notes, surveys, questionnaires;
- Identify and address ethical issues in research;
- Utilise computer packages for qualitative and quantitative data.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

Main Texts:

- Creswell, J.W. (2013). Qualitative Inquiry and research design. Choosing among five traditions (3rd ed.). London: Sage.
- Flick, U. (2002). An introduction to qualitative research. London: Sage.
- McLeod, J. (2015) Doing Counselling Research. London: Sage Publications.

Additional Reading List:

- Coolican, H. (1999) Research methods and statistics in psychology. London: Hodder and Stoughton.
- Denzin, N.K. &Lincoln, G. (2002) Handbook of Qualitative Research. London: Sage.
- Etherington, K. (2004). Becoming a reflexive researcher: Using ourselves in research. Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
- Field, A. (2013). Discovering statistics using IBM SPSS statistics. Sage.
- Punch, K. F. (1998). Introduction to social research. Quantitative and qualitative approaches. London: Sage.
- Searle, A. (2000) Introducing research and data in psychology. London: Routledge.
- Strauss, A.l. & Corbin, J (1990). Basics of qualitative research: grounded theory, procedures and techniques. Newbury Park, Ca: Sage.

 
ADDITIONAL NOTES Trainees are expected to attend all the lectures and prepare themselves by completing assigned readings prior to the respective lecture.

 
STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture

 
METHOD OF ASSESSMENT
Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Assignment See note below Yes 100%
Note: Assessment due will vary according to the study-unit availability.

 
LECTURER/S Liberato Camilleri
Ruth Falzon (Co-ord.)

 
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 study-unit description above applies to the academic year 2018/9, if study-unit is available during this academic year, and may be subject to change in subsequent years.

https://www.um.edu.mt/course/studyunit