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MRes Oncology at The University of Manchester
MRes Oncology
Gain the skills you need to pursue a research career in medical and clinical oncology.

MRes Oncology

Year of entry: 2019

Course unit details:
Research Project 1

Unit code MEDN66640
Credit rating 30
Unit level FHEQ level 7 – master's degree or fourth year of an integrated master's degree
Teaching period(s) Full year
Offered by Institute of Cancer Sciences
Available as a free choice unit? No


The unit provides an opportunity to explore a cancer-related topic in greater detail, the underlying basic science and to imagine how present day research can contribute to improved treatment,  The starting point for the project will be the topic defined by your chosen supervisor.  You will investigate the clinical problem/implications, critically examine previous research that has been reported in the literarure, consider the relevant molecular, cellular and tissue-level processes and any clinical implications.  Your supervisor will help you to fill gaps in your basic knowledge. 

During the preparation of your research report and in the course of your discussions with your supervisor, you will gradually become aware of unanswered questions, gaps, controversies and even contradictions in your area of study.  You will receive training in developing ideas, hypothesis formulation, devising a workable approach, critically appraising the likely advance this would bring if successful.


The aims of the unit are to train students in:

  • literature and database searching
  • critical analysis and debate
  • identification, conceptualisation and exposition of unsolved problems
  • literature reviw planning
  • scientific writing and referencing
  • effective time management

Learning outcomes

Students should be able to:

  • identify and isolate basic scientific, translational, clinical (and where relevant) epidemiological, demographic and social elements of their research project
  • synthesise and analyse date and information
  • show critical thinking capacity, including abstraction, analysis and critical judgement
  • report on the current status of research in a chosen area
  • pose a problem, framing it in a fashion that is amenable to solution
  • command appropriate communication skills using written and spoken word, images and electronic media to engage in constructive dialogue with peers and supervisors
  • use library, electronic and online resources
  • collect and integrate evidence to formulate and test a research hypothesis
  • plan time effectively, apportioning appropriate energy to literature research and writing while undertaking other essential course activities

Teaching and learning methods

Students will carry out an independant research project which could be lab based or clinic-based.  Supervisors will provide students with a topic which the sudent will explore and criticaly examine using reported literature and other resources.

Employability skills

Analytical skills
Analysing data and information
Group/team working
Working within a research team comprising of people at various levels
Oral communication
Effectively communicating and engaging in constructive dialogue with peers and supervisors
Using various resources to identify and isolate translational elements
Written communication
Effectively communicating and engaging in constructive dialogue with peers and supervisors

Assessment methods

Method Weight
Report 100%

Feedback methods

Feedback to the students for each essay will be in the form of written feedback either via Blackboard or the mark sheet

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Project supervision 300
Independent study hours
Independent study 0

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Simon Dovedi Unit coordinator

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