Module title: Scientific Methods

SCQF level: 11:
SCQF credit value: 20.00
ECTS credit value: 10

Module code: ENV11109
Module leader: Linda Gilpin
School School of Applied Sciences
Subject area group: Animal and Plant Science
Prerequisites

n/a

2017/8, Trimester 1, Face-to-Face, Edinburgh Napier University
Occurrence: 001
Primary mode of delivery: Face-to-Face
Location of delivery: SIGHTHILL
Partner: Edinburgh Napier University
Member of staff responsible for delivering module: Linda Gilpin
Module Organiser:
Learning, Teaching and Assessment (LTA) Approach:
A series of lectures throughout the module present key ideas relevant to the research design and taxonomy topics (LOs 1, 2 &3). These lectures will be recorded and made available with additional reading material via the Moodle site for both fulltime and distance students. Statistics will be taught in the PC lab with an initial theory introduction recorded each week but with most focus on the practice developed by working through tutorial sheets with test questions to inform self-assessment (LO2). Some topics including risk assessment and ethics lend themselves to a group work approach within the class setting.

Student Activity (Notional Equivalent Study Hours (NESH))
Mode of activityLearning & Teaching ActivityNESH (Study Hours)
Face To Face Lecture 22
Face To Face Practical classes and workshops 24
Face To Face Tutorial 2
Face To Face Fieldwork 18
Independent Learning Guided independent study 134
Total Study Hours200
Expected Total Study Hours for Module200
Assessment
Type of Assessment Weighting % LOs covered Week due Length in Hours/Words
Oral Presentation 30 1 & 3 14 HOURS= 0.10, WORDS= 0
Digital Examination (not Centrally Timetabled) 70 2 8 HOURS= 3, WORDS= 0
Component 1 subtotal: 30
Component 2 subtotal: 70
Module subtotal: 100

Description of module content:

This module has three strands: philosophy and practice of science; statistical analysis and the use of R; an introduction to taxonomy and species ID. Content will include the nature of the literature and scientific method including survey and experimental strategies and the need for replication and controls. Working with people and qualitative research methods involve a different set of ethical and regulatory issues which will also be discussed. Statistical and related methods for analysing and presenting data will be covered in the first half of the module together with taxonomic theory and field and lab sessions looking at a range of taxa.

Learning Outcomes for module:

Upon completion of this module you will be able to:
LO1: Plan, propose and justify a novel scientific investigation.
LO2: Select and apply appropriate statistical methods for data analysis, and report and critically assess the results
LO3: Understand the philosophical basis of experimental and observational method and the processes maintaining the quality of scientific information, and be able to apply this understanding critically and at a professional level.


Indicative References and Reading List - URL:

Recommended - MEPHAM T. P. (2008) BIOETHICS: AN INTRODUCTION FOR THE BIOSCIENCES: OXFORD : OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS, 2nd ed. - ISBN: 9780199214303
Recommended - RUXTON, G.D. & COLEGRAVE, N. (2010) EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN FOR THE LIFE SCIENCES: OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS, OXFORD, 3rd ed. - ISBN: 9780199569120
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