EDUC 7054OL - Research Design

Online - Semester 2 - 2023

This course provides an introduction to all elements of designing a research project from developing a researchable question to ethical issues. It supports students in becoming critical consumers of research and provides strategies for searching for and critiquing literature. It also provides guidance on writing a research proposal.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code EDUC 7054OL
    Course Research Design
    Coordinating Unit School of Education
    Term Semester 2
    Level Postgraduate Coursework
    Location/s Online
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 3 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Professor Edward Palmer

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    On successful completion of this course students will be able to: Graduate Attributes APST (Graduate)*
    1 Evaluate and synthesize research materials to identify relevant areas for research 2 6.4, 7.4
    2 Convey research goals clearly in a variety of formats 3,7 6.4
    3 Interact and network effectively with peers in a team environment 3,5,8 6.3
    4 Demonstrate an understanding of ethical research considerations 5,6 7.1
    5 Demonstrate an understanding of quantitative and qualitative research methodologies 1 6.4

    *Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (Graduate Level). Relevant only to Initial Teacher Education program students
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)

    Attribute 1: Deep discipline knowledge and intellectual breadth

    Graduates have comprehensive knowledge and understanding of their subject area, the ability to engage with different traditions of thought, and the ability to apply their knowledge in practice including in multi-disciplinary or multi-professional contexts.


    Attribute 2: Creative and critical thinking, and problem solving

    Graduates are effective problems-solvers, able to apply critical, creative and evidence-based thinking to conceive innovative responses to future challenges.


    Attribute 3: Teamwork and communication skills

    Graduates convey ideas and information effectively to a range of audiences for a variety of purposes and contribute in a positive and collaborative manner to achieving common goals.


    Attribute 5: Intercultural and ethical competency

    Graduates are responsible and effective global citizens whose personal values and practices are consistent with their roles as responsible members of society.

    3, 4

    Attribute 7: Digital capabilities

    Graduates are well prepared for living, learning and working in a digital society.


    Attribute 8: Self-awareness and emotional intelligence

    Graduates are self-aware and reflective; they are flexible and resilient and have the capacity to accept and give constructive feedback; they act with integrity and take responsibility for their actions.

  • Learning Resources
    Recommended Resources
    Useful readings for this course for this course are:
    1. Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative and Mixed Methods Approaches, 5th Edition (2018) by Joan W. Creswell and J David Creswell.
      1. Hard copies are available in the library and there is a copy in Reserve.
      2. The companion website to the text is available at and provides free access a range of valuable resources.
    2. Cohen, Manion & Morrison (2011), Research Methods in Education, 7th Edition, Routledge.
      1. Additional resources are also available at the website for this book:
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    Fully Online

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    12 3 hr workshops
    10 hours of self directed study per week
    Total 156 hours
    Learning Activities Summary
    Week 1: Introduction
    Week 2: Research Designs
    Week 3: Sourcing Literature
    Week 4: Research Tools
    Week 5: Research Proposals
    Week 6: Research Strategies
    Week 7: Data
    Week 8: Quantitative Methods
    Week 9: Qualitative Methods
    Week 10: Ethics
    Week 11: Ethics and Risk
    Week 12: Budgets
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment Task
    Task Type Weighting Learning Outcome APST
    Research proposal Written proposal 50-70% 1,2,4 6.4, 7.4
    Discussion forum Written 30-50% 3,4,5 6.3, 6.4, 7.1, 7.4

    Assessment Detail
    Research Proposal
    This assignment is designed to allow you to put your research design skills to use in a context directly relevant to you and your discipline. This is an individual piece of work requiring a comprehensive literature review, and a clear, well thought out design to meet clear objectives. It is worth 50% of your overall mark and the skills you need to complete this assignment successfully will be taught to you via your discussion board engagement.

    2500 words (excluding references). We suggest breaking it down this way

    Introduction (give some idea of the context briefly) 200 words
    Literature review (1200 words). use this space to synthesise the literature and identify a gap. This should lead directly to your research question
    Proposed research design/methodology/data collection and analysis/budget outline (900 words)
    Ethics issues (no major detail required, but discuss potential issues) (150 words)
    Conclusion (50 words)
    The number of required references is not a fixed number. The expectation is that you will likely look at 40 articles and include around 15 relevant ones.

    Many of you will find it challenging to work within 2500 words. This is very similar to what you may encounter in the real world. Being concise is a skill worth learning.

    Discussion Forum
    The discussion forum is where you will engage regularly with concepts and practices in research design. You are expected to engage with the forum weekly and complete the tasks set each week. You will be given time in class to formulate and post your initial posts and then we will discuss further in class.

    Via MyUni
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

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