BMidwif Midwifery

Year of entry: 2022

Course unit details:

Unit code NURS31310
Credit rating 40
Unit level Level 3
Teaching period(s) Full year
Offered by Nursing & Midwifery
Available as a free choice unit? No


The Dissertation Unit builds upon the skills and knowledge of research and critical appraisal from levels 4 (Midwifery Knowledge & Research) and 5 (Evidence Based Midwifery Practice). It aims to provide the student with the opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge and awareness of the concepts of research design and research methodology. In addition, the students will be able to demonstrate their ability to critically appraise synthesise and evaluate their interpretation of the available evidence.
The specific objective of this unit is for the student to produce a dissertation on a topic of their choice. This will consist of using a systematic approach to searching, collating, synthesising and evaluating the literature.
The dissertation unit is an independent unit facilitated by on-line learning; face-to-face lectures; tutorials, seminars and supervision.


  • Provide the students with the skills to develop a research project, using appropriate literature, data sources and research methods.
  • Further develop research skills in order to enhance the applicability of research for evidence based practice.

Teaching and learning methods

The unit will run over two semesters September to December and January to June with lectures; tutorials; electronic learning and supervision with an allocated supervisor. There will also be a significant amount of self-directed and independent learning.
Supervisory arrangements: Each student will be allocated a supervisor within the School and will be provided with either one-to-one supervision or group supervision with a small number of students.
E-Learning: Blackboard material will consist of: course content (presentation materials; talking head; tasks, and references); relevant websites/links; and a discussion board.

Knowledge and understanding

  • Demonstrate through group discussion a critical awareness of the role of research in clinical practice and of the midwife in its development and dissemination.
  • Devise and sustain arguments in a structured literature review on a self-selected topic relevant to their area of clinical practice.
  • Accurately apply knowledge of research to develop the skills to write a research proposal.

Intellectual skills

  • Demonstrate critical thinking and analysis skills via the production of a research-based dissertation.
  • Critically interprets and evaluates research evidence and its application to clinical practice as an integral part of the research-based dissertation.

Practical skills

  • Apply research evidence in a critical and evaluative way and relate this to clinical practice.

Transferable skills and personal qualities

  • Use information technology, such as electronic library databases and bibliographic software systems, information storage and retrieval strategies and demonstrate these in the form of a search strategy in the dissertation.
  • Learn independently and utilise research and critical appraisal skills through supervision and in clinical practice.
  • Locate, review and critically evaluate research findings relevant to clinical practice.
  • Critically evaluate the implementation of evidence-based practice within clinical practice.

Assessment methods

Method Weight
Written assignment (inc essay) 100%

Feedback methods

Students will normally have the opportunity to receive feedback on formative work submitted prior to the summative assessment. Other feedback opportunities will also be available in class and online discussion boards. Online feedback is provided in Grademark. Provisional feedback based on internal marking will be made available prior to the Exam Board on the basis that these marks are yet to be ratified at the Exam Board and therefore may be subject to change. A standard feedback mechanism in Grademark is utilised across all undergraduate programmes within the School which provides detailed and constructive feedback on each component and aspect of assessment and identifies areas of strength and those aspects which could be enhanced.

Student feedback is obtained through open discussion forums on blackboard, in class discussions, via formal University unit evaluation forms and also qualitative, in house evaluations at the end of the unit. 

Recommended reading

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 21
Seminars 12
Tutorials 10
Placement hours
Placement 30
Independent study hours
Independent study 332

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