Data Collection, Analysis and Interpretation

The details
Health and Social Care (School of)
Colchester Campus
Postgraduate: Level 7
Tuesday 11 October 2022
Tuesday 28 February 2023
24 November 2022


Requisites for this module
HS927, HS948



Key module for

DIP B906MO Health Care Practice,
MSC B906MO Advanced Clinical Practice,
MSC B90536 Professional Practice (Health Care),
MSC B9B7MO Advanced Clinical Practitioner Apprenticeship,
MSC L43912 Global Public Health,
DOCTB90460 Health Care Education,
DOCTB90060 Health Service Management,
DOCTB74060 Nursing,
DOCTB93060 Occupational Therapy,
DOCTB71260 Public Health (Health Visiting),
DOCTL59260 Social Care Education,
DOCTL59060 Social Services Management,
DOCTB62060 Speech and Language Therapy

Module description

Evidence based practice is an essential component of responsive and responsible health policy, strategy, leadership, service provision and coordination of action for health. To scrutinise the knowledge that informs and guides practice, the practitioner needs to be research-literate. This module explores the different ways in which data can be collected, analysed and interpreted so that students become more confident in carrying out these activities themselves, as well as increasing their ability to critique the research carried out by others.

In particular, students will be able to reflect on the most suitable research methods for their particular research question, understanding that the data collected has implications for the analysis that can be carried out and the types of question that can be answered.

Module aims

This module aims to provide students with a range of techniques for collecting, analysing and interpreting data. It combines a theoretical with a practical approach to enable students to fully understand the collection and analysis process so that they are able to make informed decisions when designing and carrying out research.

Module learning outcomes

On completing this module a student will be able to:
1) Debate the use of particular research methods in response to specific research questions
2) Design and develop data collection instruments and critically reflect on their value and suitably
3) Identify and debate the ethical implications of research
4) Explain and carry out a range of data analysis using appropriate computer software
5) Interpret the findings of statistical and qualitative analysis and relate this to their field.

Module information

This module takes place over ten weeks with a two or three hour class each week. Students are first introduced to the difference between quantitative and qualitative research, how they differ and how they complement each other. Sessions 2 -5 then focus on quantitative methods including research design, the importance of research ethics and the design of questionnaires. Sessions 3-5 are in a computer lab during which a range of descriptive and inferential data analysis techniques are introduced using SPSS. In sessions 6-9 approaches to qualitative data collection and analysis are explored, including a computer lab class which introduces the use of NVivo as an example of qualitative data analysis software. The final week introduces the concept of mixed methods research and its relevance in public health research.

Learning and teaching methods

The module uses lectures and computer lab sessions supported by Moodle. Moodle hosts extra readings, copies of slides, and other material. The assessment task includes piloting your own material which should be developed for formative assessment. Tutorials are scheduled to complement this process.


This module does not appear to have a published bibliography for this year.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Coursework weighting
Coursework   Formative assignment     
Coursework   3,000 word assignment    100% 
Coursework   3,000 word assignment Resubmission (CPD)     
Coursework   3,000 word assignment Resubmission (CPD)     
Coursework   3,000 word Assignment Reassessment (GPH)     

Exam format definitions

  • Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
  • In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary, for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.

Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr ZhiMin Xiao, email: zhimin.xiao@essex.ac.uk.
ZhiMin Xiao Email:zhimin.xiao@essex.ac.uk Student Administrator: David Bidwell E:cpdshortcourses@essex.ac.uk GPH Student administrator: Jakub Kulesza Email: gph@essex.ac.uk



External examiner

Dr Nicola Clarke
Birmingham City University
Senior Lecturer/Professional Navigator/Academic Advisor/Seda Accredited Doctoral
Dr Elaine Lehane
University College Cork
Senior Lecturer
Dr Kate Parkinson
University of Salford
Subject Leader, Health and Social Care
Available via Moodle
Of 39 hours, 33 (84.6%) hours available to students:
3 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
3 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s), module, or event type.


Further information

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