Final Year Dissertation

The details
Interdisciplinary Studies Centre (ISC)
Colchester Campus
Full Year
Undergraduate: Level 6
Thursday 03 October 2019
Friday 26 June 2020
14 August 2019


Requisites for this module



Key module for

BA T702 American Studies (United States) (UK Study),
BA T708 American Studies (United States) (Including Year Abroad),
BA T710 American Studies (United States) (Including Foundation Year and Year Abroad),
BA T712 American Studies (United States) (UK Study) (Including Placement Year),
BA T770 American Studies (United States) (including Placement Year),
BA T7P4 American Studies (United States) with Film (Including Placement Year),
BA T7W6 American Studies (United States) with Film (Including Year Abroad),
BA T7W8 American Studies (United States) with Film (Including Foundation Year and Year Abroad),
BA MT26 Criminology and American Studies (UK Study),
BA MT27 Criminology and American Studies (Including Year Abroad),
BA MT28 Criminology and American Studies (Including Foundation Year and Year Abroad),
BA MT3R Criminology and American Studies (Including Placement Year),
BA MT62 Criminology and American Studies (UK Study) (Including Placement Year),
BA R000 European Studies (Including Year Abroad),
BA R001 European Studies,
BA R002 European Studies (Including Placement Year),
BA R008 European Studies (Including Foundation Year),
BA R9T8 European Studies and Modern Languages (Including Foundation Year),
BA R9T9 European Studies and Modern Languages,
BA R9R1 European Studies with French,
BA R9R8 European Studies with French (Including Foundation Year),
BA R9R2 European Studies with German,
BA R9R6 European Studies with German (Including Foundation Year),
BA R9R3 European Studies with Italian,
BA R9R7 European Studies with Italian (Including Foundation Year),
BA R9L2 European Studies with Politics,
BA R9L8 European Studies with Politics (Including Foundation Year),
BA R9L8JS European Studies with Politics (Including Foundation Year),
BA R9R4 European Studies with Spanish,
BA R9R9 European Studies with Spanish (Including Foundation Year),
BA T711 Latin American Studies (Including Year Abroad),
BA T721 Latin American Studies (Including Placement Year),
BA T731 Latin American Studies,
BA T7N3 Latin American Studies (Including Foundation Year),
BA T7N2 Latin American Studies with Business Management,
BA T7N4 Latin American studies with Business Management (Including Foundation Year),
BA T7M8 Latin American studies with Human Rights (Including Foundation Year),
BA T7M9 Latin American Studies with Human Rights,
BA L903 Global Studies,
BA L904 Global Studies (including year abroad),
BA L905 Global Studies (Including Placement Year),
BA L908 Global Studies (Including Foundation Year and Year Abroad),
BA LR04 Global Studies and Modern Languages (Including Year Abroad),
BA L910 Global Studies with Politics,
BA L911 Global Studies with Politics (Including year abroad),
BA L912 Global Studies with Politics (Including Placement Year),
BA L913 Global Studies with Politics (Including Foundation Year),
BA L914 Global Studies with Human Rights,
BA L916 Global Studies with Human Rights (Including Foundation Year),
BA L917 Global Studies with Human Rights (Including Placement Year),
BA L918 Global Studies with Human Rights (Including Year Abroad)

Module description

The CS831 Dissertation Seminar is compulsory for ISC students who have chosen to do a final year BA dissertation. This seminar provides a forum for students to discuss their research, present their main findings, and give and receive feedback on their work. The module is mainly organised on a workshop basis, but the module tutor will also give short informal lectures on a range of issues related to data collection and analysis, writing and composition, and structuring an argument.

The seminar runs over the autumn and spring terms. The three autumn term sessions are designed to ensure that everyone is well prepared to complete data collection by the start of the spring term. The spring term sessions are dedicated to students' work in progress. Before reading week, everyone will give an oral presentation of their main research findings; after reading week, everyone prepares a draft chapter for discussion by the group. We will agree the schedule in the first session. You will learn a lot from issues arising in other students' projects, so attendance and active participation at all sessions are very important.

Pre-Requisites for doing the dissertation (for details and guidance see Dissertation Handbook)

All students must obtain approval for doing a dissertation from the module supervisor.
To obtain approval, students must submit a dissertation research proposal and if necessary revise the proposal according to feedback.
Deadline for submitting proposal for approval: 10am Friday October 4th 2019 (Week 1).
Students will receive feedback on their proposals early in Week 2; you will then have until Monday of Week 3 to revise the proposal.
Any student who has not submitted a satisfactory proposal by this point will be required to change to one of the other ISC capstone options: either CS300 Community Engagement Group Projects or CS301 The Essay and Manifesto as Social Criticism.

Module aims

To enable students who have not taken CS241 to finalise the research design of their dissertation projects and carry out data collection in a systematic way during the Autumn term
To support students in processing data and writing their dissertations following the completion of the main data collection phase
To provide a forum for students to discuss their research projects, and to present their main findings and draft chapters
To enable students to enhance their presentation and writing skills
To identify and address any weaknesses in students’ research and enable students to capitalise on strengths when writing their dissertation

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module the student should have:

An understanding of how to collect and process their data in a systematic way
A grasp of the difference between the logic of investigation and the logic of presentation
Improved writing and composition skills and the confidence to write their dissertations in a creative and coherent way
An ability to reflect critically on their own research and writing and to give constructive feedback on the work of their peers

Module information

No additional information available.

Learning and teaching methods

This module is organised on a workshop basis. The two-hour sessions will combine short presentations by the Course Tutor on key issues relating to data processing and writing, but most sessions are dedicated to student research presentations and discussions of draft chapters. The exact number of Spring term sessions will depend on the number of students who enrol. The final schedule for presentations and draft chapters will be announced in the first session of the Spring term. Students are required to attend all sessions. Students will find that they learn a lot from discussions of other students' projects, so attendance and active participation is very important.


This module does not appear to have a published bibliography.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Weighting
Coursework Dissertation Proposal 0%
Coursework Dissertation Outline and Draft Chapter 5%
Coursework Final Dissertation (10000-12000 words) 01/05/2020 80%
Practical Oral Presentation of Main Findings 15%

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Jane Hindley janeh@essex.ac.uk
Interdisciplinary Studies Centre General Office - 6.130, email: istudies@essex.ac.uk



External examiner

Dr James Scorer
Senior Lecturer in Latin American Cultural Studies
Dr Jonathan Mitchell
University Of East Anglia
Senior Lecturer in American Studies
Dr Ross Wilson
University of Nottingham
Director of Liberal Arts
Available via Moodle
Of 28 hours, 28 (100%) hours available to students:
0 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).


Further information

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