BSc Speech and Language Therapy / Course details

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Clinical Research 2

Course unit fact file
Unit code PCHN20532
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 2
Teaching period(s) Semester 2
Available as a free choice unit? No


Clinical Research 2 runs in the final six weeks of the second semester of the second year of study. It is the second year course unit for the Clinical Research strand of the degree programme. This course unit will build on the principles of research and research methods from Clinical Research 1. The course unit also provides key knowledge, understanding and skills required for students to complete the Clinical Research 3 project.


The unit aims to:

  • Provide students with opportunities to gain the skills required to evaluate research critically.
  • Provide students with opportunities to gain an understanding of relevant statistical principles and tests to understand the statistical issues described in research papers.
  • Provide students with opportunities to gain knowledge of research and statistics so that students are able to design a detailed proposal for a clinical research project.
  • Prepare students to become evidence based practitioners in speech and language therapy by providing opportunities to develop knowledge and skills related to the use of the evidence base in relation to current interventions and assessment procedures.
  • Prepare students to use appropriate tools of analysis in searching for and developing evidence to use in practice and to carry out appropriate outcomes measurement and service evaluations.

Learning outcomes

Students will be able to:

Knowledge and understanding

  • Interpret and report the results of statistical tests in a clinically meaningful way.
  • Describe the key principles of evidence based practice and its methodology.
  • Relate the principles of evidence based practice to clinical practice and individual client management.
  • Demonstrate an appreciation of evidence which can be provided by different types of clinical research design.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of a range of outcome measures and their qualities and applicability in SLT practice and research.

Intellectual skills

  • Critically evaluate the research literature in order to understand and apply the research evidence base in speech and language therapy practice.
  • Engage in independent learning to review and consolidate their knowledge and understanding of the information presented.
  • Synthesise, organise and begin to evaluate research findings and present them in a logical argument, clearly and accurately expressed.
  • Present the results of statistical tests clearly for both professionals and clients.
  • Acquire and evaluate information from a range of sources; show understanding of the theoretical, statistical and methodological issues involved; present a clear discussion of the topic, justifying the chosen position by reference to the evidence considered.
  • Plan and report on a contemporary clinical evidence based question.

Practical skills

  • Set up a data file and enter data in SPSS, produce graphs and summarise data and perform appropriate statistical tests.
  • Understand and interpret the results of speech and language therapy assessment procedures in terms of psychometric properties.
  • Be able to locate evidence to support practice in speech and language therapy from a variety of online and library sources.

Transferable skills and personal qualities

  • Make use of current research by evaluating it and applying it in clinical practice.
  • Understand, manipulate, interpret and present basic numerical and statistical data.
  • Search relevant clinical databases for information to support an evidence based argument.
  • Make effective use of information and communication technology, specifically SPSS.

Teaching and learning methods

Learning and teaching processes utilise tutor led lectures and computer-lab practical classes. Practical demonstrations of worked examples in statistics and evidence based practice.

Online resources will provide step by step instructions for producing graphs, descriptive statistics and performing statistical tests using SPSS, providing students with opportunities to practice performing these statistical tests and interpreting and reporting the results.

To support independent study, learning materials including interactive tasks, lecture slides and recommended reading will be provided on the unit's online Blackboard learning environment.

Assessment methods

  1. Weekly statistics activities (formative)
  2. Two-part written assignment (2500 words, 100%)

Feedback methods

Students will have the opportunity to self-evaluate their weekly statistical assignment work against class discussion and tutor written outline answers and expectations for content.

Students will receive verbal tutor feedback on their plans for the evidence based practice component of the assignment.

A mark and individual, detailed tutor written feedback will be provided following the assignment.

Throughout the unit, students will have the opportunity to self-evaluate their work and understanding against class/group discussions and comments from the lecturer.

Recommended reading

Field, A. (2013) Discovering Statistics using SPSS 4th edition. Sage.

Melnyk, B & Fineout-Overholt, E. (Eds.) Evidence based practice in nursing and healthcare: a guide to best practice (pp163-182). Philadelphia: Lippincott, Williams and Wilkins.

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 12
Seminars 6
Independent study hours
Independent study 82

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Jenny Freed Unit coordinator

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