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MSc Projects Information

Students on the MSc in Human Communication, the MSc in Joint Professional Practice and those converting a City LCS PGDip in SLT are supported to conduct a small scale research. Full details of what the final project should look like are to be found in the relevant handbooks, but in short, the research should be an original piece of empirical research of publishable standard and between 10,000 and 15,000 words in length.

This webpage serves to give a brief introduction to the concept and process of MSc research, and provides a list of suggested research ideas from each member of staff from which students are asked to select their research project. Students can view completed projects on a computer in the learning resources laboratory, D201. The projects are available to download in Adobe PDF format.

What purpose should the MSc project serve?

Undertaking a project provides direct experience of carrying out research by confronting students with the conceptual, methodological, logistical and logical problems faced by all researchers, and providing opportunity for a deeper understanding of the existing research literature.

For SLT students, the study should also prepare them for a research oriented approach to therapy and for participating in research on language and communication.  Thus the main aim and motivation for MSc research should be a desire to obtain in depth knowledge and experience of clinical research. 

Studying for an MSc should familiarise students with the task of structuring their ideas around the standard framework of research reporting used by scientists. This framework is not some arbitrary formula but a logical ordering of the progression of ideas from initial research questions, through methods used to obtain answers, to presentation of results and interpretation and discussion of findings.

Although the MSc project should be of interest to the student, and the resulting thesis of publishable standard, the main aim of the MSc is not to 'solve' a problem faced by the student. Research questions are rarely answered by one study alone, rather research is a 'patchwork' of many people's efforts to understand an issue, using different methodologies and approaches.

Starting an MSc project

Students wishing to complete an MSc project are asked to look at the list below completed by each member of staff, and identify projects that would be of interest.  Project ideas can be viewed alphabetically by staff name or by topic area. For some students, their clinical interest, client group or specific research question may not be represented here. For these students we ask that the suggested ideas in the list below are carefully examined for ways of tailoring the projects to specific clinical contexts. In some cases it is also possible to work with a member of staff on an original research idea that does not appear to match any of the suggested topics. In this case, please contact the Director of Research who will put you in contact with the member of staff who seems to be working in the closest field. Each member of staff also has their own webpage where there are fuller descriptions of research interests.

Students completing the MSc in Joint Professional Practice should also look at the dissertation handbook for details of how to identify projects and interest areas at the Institute of Education.   

Process of MSc projects

(NB: students on the MSc in Joint Professional Practice, please refer to your dissertation handbook)

  1. Choose a project that interests you from the ideas list (or develop your own research idea and proposal)
  2. Contact the Director of Research and the relevant member of staff
  3. After discussion and agreement, register for MSc and get project ethical clearance (NB that this can take several months for NHS based projects)
  4. Begin supervision and project - data collection
  5. Carry out data analyses and writing up
  6. Project is marked, double marked and then moderated before going to the Assessment Board.
  7. Award of MSc
  8. Publication of paper from MSc if appropriate

For MSc Human Communication projects, students should be in a position to carry out their research by the 30th of June of the second year of study.

For MSc conversion projects, students must have completed project within 3 years of PG Dip qualification.

Students can expect a minimum of 4 personal meetings and regular email contact with their supervisor over the course of the project. The thesis is an independent piece of research and final marks include a rating of 'independent working'.

For further information about this webpage only contact Katerina Hilari.

For further information about MSc projects contact the Director of Research or refer to the MSc information in the relevant handbooks.

A list of suggested MSc projects by topic area is also available.