Research Strategies

MQF Level: 7

ECTS Value: 5 ECTS

Self Study Hours: 60

Contact Hours: 25

Duration: 10 sessions

Assessment hours: 40


Overall Objectives and Outcomes

Research is the means through which new knowledge is acquired. Academic research conforms to a set of established criteria. These criteria ensure that a disciplined inquiry is conducted in a balanced and ethical way. Academic research demands critical engagement from the researcher at all stages throughout the research process. This module will provide course participants the opportunity to widen their knowledge of what academic research in education entails and to appreciate the level of rigour that is expected. This will include learning about the philosophical underpinnings of research, the different research methods and the practical techniques needed to conduct research. This module will facilitate a better understanding of how academic integrity should be reflected in all of the researcher’s decisions and actions.

By the end of this programme, participants should be able to:


a) Develop a research project to address the research questions 

b) Plan and design a questionnaire

c) Integrate qualitative and quantitative components in mixed methods research 

d) Initiate, devise and conduct qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods research;

e) Write a research proposal;

f) Systematically analyse qualitative and quantitative data, and interpret results.


a) Define the notions of ontology, epistemology and research paradigms;

b) Identify qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods research approaches;

c) List a variety of research tools;

d) Distinguish between research questions, statement of problem, hypothesis and null hypothesis;

e) Describe the notions of validity, reliability and generalisability;

f) Identify different forms of research designs, including: sequential designs, case studies and action research;

g) Explain what is correlational research;

h) List different sampling techniques;

i) Identify the ethical responsibilities of the researcher;

j) Explain the limitations in research;

k) Describe what is researcher reflexivity;

l) Define what plagiarism is and how it can be avoided.


a) Evaluate and critique the advantages and disadvantages of qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods research;

b) Demonstrate sensitivity to ethical issues in research;

c) Understand the different educational settings for research;

d) Match the research tool/s with the research question;

e) Understand how to organise the research project by effectively managing time and resources;

f) Understand the importance of comprehensively identifying the most relevant literature for the research and develop a coherent link between the research question/s, the literature, the research design, and discussion of the findings;

g) Understand the importance of piloting a study;

h) Get acquainted with the division of chapters in a dissertation and the scope of each chapter;

i) Understand the difference between qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods methodologies.

Assessment Methods

This module will be assessed through: Assignment.

Suggested Readings

Core Reading List
  1. Ary, D., Cheser Jacobs, L., Sorensen, C., & Razavieh, A. (2006). Introduction to research in education (8th). Wadsworth Cengage Learning.
  2. Bryman, A. (2012). Social research methods (4th). Oxford.
  3. Cohen, L., Manion, L. & Morrison, K. (2018). Research methods in education (8th). Routledge. 
  4. Creamer, E. (2018). An introduction to fully integrated mixed methods research. Sage.
  5. Denzin, N. K. & Lincoln, Y. S. (Eds). (2011), The Sage handbook of qualitative research (Fourth Edition); Sage.
Supplementary Reading List
  1. Bogner, A., Littig, B. & Menz W., (Eds). (2009). Interviewing Experts. Palgrave Macmillan.
  2. Crossley, M., Arthur, L, & McNewss, E. (2016). Revisiting insider – Outside research in comparative and international education. Symposium Books.
  3. McNiff, J. (2013). Action research: Principles and practice (3rd ed.) Routledge.
  4. Tashakkori, A. & Teddie, C., (1998). Mixed methodology – Combining qualitative and quantitative approaches. Sage.
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