PhD Computer Science / Programme details

Year of entry: 2023

Course unit details:
Starting Your Postgraduate Research

Course unit fact file
Unit code COMP81020
Credit rating 0
Unit level FHEQ level 8 – doctoral degree
Teaching period(s) Full year
Offered by
Available as a free choice unit? No


The unit is intended to give students an introduction to working on their PhD. It covers statutory compliance, interactions with, and expections of, their supervisor. It prepares students for academic writing include Background Reading, Critical Analysis, Doctoral Consortiums, and Report Writing in the format expected from the Research Progress Review and End of Year Progression. 


The unit aims to:
Give the PGR the skills to be able to get started on performing quality research, including an understanding of research integrity and statutory compliance.

Knowledge and understanding

  • Explain what Research Integrity means.
  • Describe what makes good research.
  • Summarise understand Export Controls (EC)
  • Distinguish their responsibilities in relation to ECs.
  • Identify their liabilities in relation to ECs.
  • Recognise threats to Equality Inclusion & Diversity.
  • Indicate ways to address Equality Inclusion & Diversity.
  • Describe Data Governance and GDPR.
  • Explain GDPR and how it relates to Data Governance in relation to Data Protection.
  • Illustrate their role and responsibilities in relation to Data Governance.
  • Identify their liability liabilities in relation to GDPRs.

Intellectual skills

  • Demonstrate how to critically read a paper.
  • Judge the value of a paper based on this critical reading.
  • Demonstrate how to structure constructive criticism.
  • Demonstrate how to critique another’s work based on this structure.
  • Describe the anatomy of a good Poster.
  • Given a set of information determine the most important for a poster presentation.

Practical skills

  • Create a Poster.
  • Define and Organise a set of Talking Points to accompany this Poster.
  • Create a Short report of the type required for the Research Progress Review and End of Year Progression.
  • Analyse a Research Paper.
  • Write a Constructive Review of that Paper.
  • Recommend an alternative paper discussing why by comparing and contrasting both.
  • Assess another's work as it is being presented
  • Determine the most important aspects of this work.
  • Verbally constructively critique this work.
  • Argue for change and positively conclude.

Transferable skills and personal qualities

  • Textually compose complex academic information.
  • Verbally disseminate a complex research concept.
  • Convey a complex system / ideas / rationale / contribution / research questions using text and graphics.

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 20
Independent study hours
Independent study 30

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Gavin Brown Unit coordinator

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