COLLEGE OF MEDICINE AND HEALTH
Medicine, Nursing and Allied Health Professions

Module

Neuroscience Research Project

Module titleNeuroscience Research Project
Module codeNEU3001
Academic year2021/2
Credits45
Module staff

Dr Craig Beall (Convenor)

Dr Kate Ellacott (Convenor)

Duration: Term123
Duration: Weeks

12

12

1

Number students taking module (anticipated)

100

Description - summary of the module content

Module description


This module offers an opportunity to draw together all your prior learning to address a key question in contemporary Neuroscience. You may address this question by undertaking research in a laboratory, in silico, using databases or in a clinical environment.

You may collect data first-hand, work with an existing dataset, or draw your information exclusively from published literature to synthesise new knowledge. In every case, success depends upon your critical appraisal and ability to communicate your insights to a range of audiences.

The module is organised into four streams, which are illustrated below:

This module marks the culmination of your intellectual development as an undergraduate. As such, success in this module provides an important opportunity to showcase your knowledge and ability, thereby preparing for future employment or further study.
During this capstone experience, you will work as part of team, but with the intellectual independence needed to shape the project and to make your first substantive contribution to our knowledge of Neuroscience.

This module is compulsory for students studying BSc Neuroscience and for students on the BSc Medical Sciences (Neuroscience) pathway.
The following modules are recommended in preparation: Introduction to Neuroscience (NEU1006, formerly CSC1006), Neuropharmacology (NEU2019, formerly CSC2019) and Neural Circuits (NEU2018, formerly CSC2018). However, you may have covered similar material elsewhere. If you have not studied the preliminary content, you should be able to successfully complete this module by undertaking some additional study, but should discuss this further with your Academic Tutor and the Module Convener.

 

Module aims - intentions of the module

This module seeks to develop your ability to conduct Neuroscience research in a diverse range of areas and report the results in writing and verbally. It also aims to further develop and consolidate your reflective behaviours and employment skills.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

ILO: Module-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 1. Demonstrate competence in and/or understanding of key research techniques.
  • 2. Apply skills of critical thinking, problem-formulation, problem-solving, and rigorous data analysis.
  • 3. Demonstrate a detailed knowledge of essential facts and theory in a research discipline related to Neuroscience
  • 4. Describe and critically evaluate aspects of current research with reference to peer-reviewed literature.

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 5. Demonstrate professional competence in communicating effectively with research staff, other professionals and stakeholders
  • 6. Understand expectations around scientific probity, personal competence and multidisciplinary team-based practice.

ILO: Personal and key skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 7. Manage time, workload, ambiguity, change and stress effectively; demonstrate effective personal development planning, based on self-awareness and reflection
  • 8. Understand and apply key skills of effective project management and leadership
  • 9. Use employability skills to improve competitiveness in future job applications

Syllabus plan

Syllabus plan

Whilst the module’s precise content may vary from year to year, an example of the typical structure is as follows:

This module is focused on self-directed independent research on an identified topic proposed by an academic provider who supervises the project.

Induction:
Although the module runs across terms 1-3 of your final year, you should contact your identified project provider in the third term of the preceding year to discuss preparatory reading and other induction procedures.

At the beginning of your final year, you will have a lecture which will introduce the module in detail, including the Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs), assessment procedures, and other practicalities.

Project work:
In the final year, project work will normally be undertaken in the Autumn and Spring terms. By running across two terms, you and your supervisor have the flexibility to establish working patterns that best accommodate the project, your other module choices, and the circumstances of their research group.

Supervisory meetings:
Supervisory meetings are held by arrangement, with different research groups/academics following different conventions. However, you are entitled to on average 30 minutes of supervisory time per week, comprised of either time with day-to-day supervisors (i.e., PhD students and postdoctoral research associates) or Principal Investigators. In addition to this there are three formal documented meetings with your project supervisor. You are encouraged to attend your host supervisors’ lab meetings and journal clubs, or institutional research seminars should your timetable allow.

The written elements of the project are typically submitted towards the end of term 2. In term 3, you will give a presentation based on your findings which forms part of the assessment.

Learning and teaching

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad
22428

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning and Teaching2Lecture: Introduction to module (virtual if necessary)
Scheduled Learning and Teaching10Supervisor meetings: for guidance on project development, implementation, data analysis and interpretation. (virtual if necessary)
Scheduled Learning and Teaching8Interactions with day-to-day supervisors and Principal Investigators (virtual if necessary)
Scheduled Learning and Teaching2Academic tutor meetings (virtual if necessary): • To discuss the Academic, Personal & Professional Learning Evaluation (APPLE) Form development of skills required for successful completion of final year • To discuss the E-portfolio • To discuss employment/future study
Guided independent study420Project-related work including: Formative project proposal, literature research, report writing, data collection and analysis, preparation for supervisor meetings, oral presentation preparation, preparation of the E-Portfolio and other guided independent study.
Guided independent study8Keeping E-Portfolio, APPLE form and CV up to date.

Assessment

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Written Preliminary Project proposalProject proposal 500 words (within first 4 weeks of project)1-5Written and verbal
Personal and key skills feedback from peers, project supervisor and research colleagues and Academic Tutor as appropriate.100-200 words 1-8Written and verbal
Provider feedbackOn 10% of draft written research project report/dissertation1-6Written and verbal

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams
80020

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Depending on the type of project you undertake, you will submit one of the following: Lab/data Project Dissertation OR Critical review dissertation OR Impact & Communication (sci-comms)70 6,000 words 10,000 words 10,000 words in total (or equivalent) 1-6 Written
1x Oral presentation (10min) + Q&As (5 min) (virtual, if required; pre-recorded)2015 min5Verbal and/or written
Professionalism Component - encompassing the following elements: a) 1x Research Project supervisor student performance judgements (5%) b) Professionalism Award Assessment (2.5%) c) E-Portfolio (2.5%)10 b) Completed PDP or APPLE form (as appropriate) c) Electronic file containing experiences, feedback, and assessment results. a) 1-8 b) 7-9 c) 7-9Verbal and/or written

Re-assessment

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
One of the following: Lab/data Project Dissertation, 6000 words (70%) OR Critical review dissertation, 10,000 words (70%) OR Impact & communication (sci-comms) 10,000 words (or equivalent) (70%)Re-submission of the one of the following (in-line with original form of assessment): Lab/data Project Dissertation, 6000 words OR Critical review dissertation, 10,000 words OR Impact & communication (sci-comms), 10,000 words (or equivalent) 1-6By end of ref/def period
Oral presentation (20%)Oral Presentation (10min) + Q&As (5 min) (20%)5By end of ref/def period
Professionalism Component (10%)Remediation meeting with academic tutor (10%)7-9Early in term 3 (see note)

Re-assessment notes

Please refer to the TQA section on Referral/Deferral: http://as.exeter.ac.uk/academic-policy-standards/tqa-manual/aph/consequenceoffailure/

If you fail the professionalism award assessment component and fail the module overall, you will meet with your Academic Tutor to remediate this as a referred assessment. This will involve submitting any outstanding components and any actions required by the Academic Tutor to remediate unprofessional behaviour. If you fail the professionalism award component but pass the module overall you will meet with your Academic Tutor to remediate before the end of the academic year.

Resources

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Basic reading:
Writing for Science Students (Boyle and Ramsay)
Success in academic writing (Day, 2018)

Project-specific reading:
This will vary according to your specific project, and initial reading will be suggested by your supervisor: The project description form typically contains 3-6 papers and/or reviews to build a foundation of project specific knowledge.

Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources


ELE – College to provide hyperlink to appropriate pages

Web based and electronic resources:  As directed by the project supervisor

Module has an active ELE page

Indicative learning resources - Other resources

Other resources: As directed by the supervisor

Key words search

Research, data, analysis, literature, neuroscience, independent, communication

Credit value45
Module ECTS

22.5

Module pre-requisites

NEU1006 or CSC1006

NQF level (module)

6

Available as distance learning?

No

Origin date

29/11/19

Last revision date

25/06/2021