Research Project in Ecological and Marine Sciences

The details
Life Sciences (School of)
Colchester Campus
Full Year
Undergraduate: Level 6
Thursday 03 October 2019
Friday 26 June 2020
23 January 2020


Requisites for this module



Key module for

BSC C100 Biological Sciences,
BSC C101 Biological Sciences (Including Year Abroad),
BSC C102 Biological Sciences (Including Placement Year),
BSC CD00 Biological Sciences (Including Foundation Year),
BSC C161 Marine Biology (Including Foundation Year),
BSC C164 Marine Biology,
BSC CC60 Marine Biology (Including Year Abroad),
BSC CC64 Marine Biology (Including Placement Year),
MMB C160 Marine Biology

Module description

The final year research project is an opportunity for you to carry out an individual scientific investigation on a topic relating to your degree specialisation. You will use the skills developed in the course to identify, with your supervisor, a suitable question and then design an experimental approach to obtain data addressing this question.

Your analysis and presentation of these data in a suitable scientific paper format report forms the main assessed component of this module. The second major component involves researching, understanding and writing critically about the scientific literature relating to your project work.

Module aims

The aim of this module is for you to carry out an individual scientific investigation on a topic relating to your degree specialisation

Module learning outcomes

On successful completion of the module, students will be able to:

1. Update CV, write a job application cover letter, and perform in a mock interview scenario.
2. Develop a project plan, including the experimental, analytical and statistical methods to be used.
3. Demonstrate an understanding of the health and safety and ethical issues related to scientific research and undertake appropriate risk- and required ethics-assessments.
4. Maintain an accurate and up to date record of project work and data collection.
5. Demonstrate responsibility for personal time management and for any necessary amendments to the project plan and reflect on progress and outcome of the project.
6. Use a search engine (e.g. Web of Knowledge) to research the scientific literature relating to their research project area and present this information as an extended introduction to their project report.
7. Carry out a research project and obtain sufficient data of good quality using appropriate experimental, analytical and statistical methods.
8. Analyse and interpret scientific data.
9. Communicate the outcomes of research effectively in a written report in scientific paper format.
10. Describe and critically evaluate data from research articles.
11. Refer appropriately to published work and be competent in the use of bibliographic software (e.g. EndNote).
12. Communicate effectively by an oral presentation of project work.
13. Address scientific questions on the background, methods, data and future direction from expert assessors.

Specific employability and transferrable skills are highly dependent on the nature of the chosen project.

Module information

No additional information available.

Learning and teaching methods

Attendance at BS832 Research Project Seminars (x4) Contact with project supervisor; students will work independently with further guidance and assistance as and when required Presentation opportunity with formative feedback provided


This module does not appear to have any essential texts. To see non-essential items, please refer to the module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Weighting
Coursework   Project Plan    5% 
Coursework   Employability skills     5% 
Coursework   BS832 Project References and Appendices     
Coursework   Project Progress Monitoring Forms     
Coursework   Project Report     60% 
Coursework   Oral Presentation    20% 
Practical   Practical Skills     10% 

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Prof Alex Dumbrell, email:
All academic staff supervising BS832 Research Projects as allocated by the School
School Undergraduate Office, email: bsugoffice (Non essex users should add to create the full email address)


Travel costs for approved work placements and live projects for this module may be covered wholly or partly at the discretion of the department. Please check with your module supervisor for details.

External examiner

Prof Anne Borland
Newcastle University
Dr Nicholas Kamenos
University of Glasgow
Available via Moodle
Of 1096 hours, 23 (2.1%) hours available to students:
1073 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).


Further information
Life Sciences (School of)

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