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Final Year Project: Introduction to next year’s module David Williams Room: A2.02 Keynes

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Presentation on theme: "Final Year Project: Introduction to next year’s module David Williams Room: A2.02 Keynes"— Presentation transcript:

1 Final Year Project: Introduction to next year’s module David Williams Room: A2.02 Keynes Email:

2 An important contribution to your degree… 45 credits for single honours students 30 credits for joint honours students You must pass the FYP to gain an honours degree You need an honours degree (at least lower second class) to gain the BPS Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC)

3 Finding a supervisor/choosing a project: General considerations Things to consider: – What topics/research areas have interested are you over the past two years? – Which modules have you been most successful in? – Which members of staff have you enjoyed being taught by? – What career do you want to pursue after graduation?

4 Staff research interests Look on staff web-pages – Research interests listed there – Access to publications Suggested projects provided by some supervisors online: – See screenshot of this page on the next slide – This page will be available from Tuesday 17 th March at 12-noon

5 Note: You can develop your own research idea, but you are not expected to necessarily

6 Approaching a potential supervisor Email potential supervisor, in first instance – Perhaps say why you would like them to supervise you and whether you have a preference for a particular research question/topic Meeting supervisor, in second instance – Some supervisors will just agree to supervision by email – But you or they might like to meet to discuss plans

7 Feel free to approach more than one supervisor – But once you’ve arranged supervision arrangements, please let other staff who you have contacted know immediately. “Allocation” is partly on a first-come-first-served basis, but: – Supervisors are in discussion with lots of students, so may not be able to commit immediately (& vice versa) – Choice to commit is based significantly on how closely related supervisor-supervisee interests are. – Supervisor may not feel comfortable supervising a project outside of their expertise, but should recommend other staff who would be suitable

8 Pragmatic approach: Be open and discuss possibilities It is the supervisor’s responsibility to evaluate whether any project is feasible and realistic The best working relationships are formed when both parties share a joint goal/interest If you have not found a supervisor by July 31 st 2015, I will allocate you to a supervisor – Please feel free to contact me if you are having difficulty arranging supervision.

9 A note on email contact It’s very important for your future job prospects that you correspond appropriately Please send formal (and polite, of course) emails to potential supervisors - in the first instance, at least: – Use the recipients name (e.g., “Dear Dr Williams”, “Dear David” etc. ) and sign your name at the bottom – Signing off with “best wishes”, “kind regards” etc. is also appropriate and appreciated.

10 Making a plan… Best to have a plan before you leave for the summer (although many students do not!) – Especially important if you want to work with children, special populations etc. Understanding the topic/research question (even if you don’t have a set method) is important – The more consideration you give to the project over the summer, the smoother the project will run when you return – Feel free to ask your supervisor for recommended reading and look for relevant papers yourself

11 Working in groups Working in groups is usual and useful – Larger sample size – Collaborative efforts in recruitment etc. Data can be scored and entered collaboratively – But statistical analyses of data must ultimately be conducted and written up individually The dissertation must be written individually Each member of the group is expected to contribute equally to the joint aspects of the project.

12 What a project entails and important steps

13 What a project entails A substantial piece of empirical research that demonstrates knowledge of research methods and research skills that are commensurate with your stage. Can be quantitative or qualitative research Most often will be original research, but can be in the form of a direct replication of a previous study (see document attached/on Moodle re replication studies)

14 Ethics You must gain ethical approval before conducting your research Most applications are straightforward, but more information needed if study: (1) utilises clinical populations, children, or vulnerable adults (2) involves the collection of highly sensitive personal, medical, or psychological information, (3) involves procedures that may injure, upset, or offend participants.

15 Disclosure and Barring Service Check If your project utilises clinical populations, children, or vulnerable adults… Need a Disclosure and Barring Service Check Application form available from Yasmin Ghandour at the psychology reception Best to complete as early as possible (especially if you an international student)

16 Assessment structure Two pieces of assessed work Literature review (submitted beginning of Spring term 2016) – 1500 word (maximum) review of literature relating to your project topic/questions Project Report (submitted May 2016): 4500 word (maximum) report comprising hypotheses, methodology, results, and discussion sections.

17 What you can expect from your supervisor/the module Availability for regular meetings (on average, two meetings per month, during term time) – Often distributed unevenly across the term Prompt responses to emails (often within a few days, excluding weekends!) Advice and support with all aspects of the project. But…

18 “Advice and support” means providing you with the resources (intellectual, practical etc.) to carry out a high-quality project yourself You are expected to be proactive and seek solutions to problems yourself FYP is a test of all the knowledge and skills you have acquired during your degree, but FYP also offers a training opportunity, so staff- student contact is much more personal and intensive than in other modules

19 Additional support/issues FYP surgeries 4 to 5 two-hour sessions run during each term to help with your research Topics include: – Applying for ethics – Advice on writing a literature review – SPSS refresher – Advice on data analysis and project write-up

20 Research Participation Scheme (RPS) Student participants for your projects can be recruited via RPS Adverts are placed on the RPS site and students can sign up to participate in your project. Dr Mario Weick will explain the RPS during a talk early next year.

21 What your supervisor expects of you. Don’t leave things until the last minute Give notice if you’re planning to hand in drafts of work Ask for advice when you’re uncertain, but… be proactive – try to find solutions yourself Use meetings effectively - consider issues in advance

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