Research and Academic Development Skills

The details
Essex Pathways
Colchester Campus
Full Year
Foundation/Year Zero: Level 3
Thursday 03 October 2024
Friday 27 June 2025
11 March 2024


Requisites for this module



Key module for

BSC N401 Accounting (Including Foundation Year),
BSC NN43 Accounting and Finance (Including Foundation Year),
BSC NN42 Accounting and Management (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N4L1 Accounting with Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N391 Banking and Finance (Including Foundation Year),
BBA N104 Business Administration (Including Foundation Year),
BBA N104CO Business Administration (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N201 Business Management (Including Foundation Year),
BA L102 Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC L103 Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC LL14 Economics and Politics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC L1G8 Economics with Mathematics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N301 Finance (Including Foundation Year),
BA L118 Financial Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC L117 Financial Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N124 International Business and Entrepreneurship (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N124CO International Business and Entrepreneurship (Including Foundation Year),
BA L160 International Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC L161 International Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N2N5 Management and Marketing (Including Foundation Year),
BA L190 Management Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC L191 Management Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N505 Marketing (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N505CO Marketing (Including Foundation Year),
BA LX14 Financial Economics and Accounting (Including Foundation Year),
BSC LG04 Economics with Data Science (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N347 Finance and Management (Including Foundation Year),
BA LX10 Business Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC C149 Economics with Psychology (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N358 International Business and Finance (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N358CO International Business and Finance (Including Foundation Year),
BA R113 Economics with Language Studies (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N114 Business Administration and Supply Chain Management (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N114CO Business Administration and Supply Chain Management (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N263 Business and Human Resource Management (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N133 Business and Analytics (including Foundation Year),
BSC N133CO Business and Analytics (including Foundation Year)

Module description

This module is designed to support students in their academic subject disciplines and to strengthen their confidence in key skills areas such as: academic writing, research, academic integrity, and collaborative and reflective practices.

The students are supported through the use of subject-specific materials tailored to their chosen degrees with the alignment of assessments between academic subject modules and the skills module.

Module aims

The aims of this module are:

  • To develop students’ ability to operate effectively, in both written and spoken language, in a range of academic settings.

  • To develop students’ basic research skills, encouraging a critical approach to source materials and appropriate use of sources as supporting evidence.

  • To encourage independent learning strategies and develop students’ confidence to make judgments and be evaluative.

  • To equip students with appropriate and effective language and study skills applicable to their various disciplines.
  • Module learning outcomes

    By the end of this module, students will be expected to be able to:

    1. Produce academic writing which is well-structured, relevant and clearly reasoned.

    2. Communicate ideas, information and arguments with clarity, both orally and in written form, and which demonstrates the ability to integrate students’ own ideas with those of others.

    3. Deliver effective presentations using an appropriate range of visual aids.

    4. Comprehend texts on a range of subjects identifying main points from listening and reading material, and demonstrating critical reading skills to assess the usefulness of information.

    5. Make full use of academic libraries and a range of appropriate electronic media for independent research purposes.

    6. Demonstrate knowledge and appropriate use of academic register and referencing conventions.

    7. Develop time management strategies, employ self-directed learning and show an ability to reflect on one’s own goals and progress.

    Skills for your professional life (Transferable Skills)

    By the end of this module, students will have practised the following transferable skills:

    1. To improve your written and oral communication skills.

    2. To develop your online and independent learning skills.

    3. To enhance your critical thinking skills.

    4. To develop your research and planning skills.

    5. To develop your teamwork and interpersonal skills.

    Module information


  • Identify text types and their relevance/appropriateness.

  • Develop basic research techniques.

  • Reading and note-taking skills development.

  • Academic Writing skills development.

  • Planning, Editing and redrafting skills (including making effective use of feedback).

  • Referencing and how to avoid plagiarism.

  • Listening skills development.

  • Listening and note-taking; taking notes from lectures.

  • Develop further research skills.

  • Summary writing and working with lecture notes.

  • Presentation skills including the effective use of visuals.

  • Making use of Graphs and statistical information.

  • Revision and exam strategies.

  • The reflective process for university students.

  • The skills identified above will be developed using topics which may include:

  • Topics of particular relevance to specific pathways.

  • Topics linked to Education for Sustainable Development.

  • Topics of generic relevance to university students and studying.

  • Current Affairs topics which offer opportunities for the development of critical thinking/discussion.

  • Sources will be included within the syllabus which support the decolonisation of the curriculum by offering a wider range of source materials, especially sources from the global south (Collyey, 2018).

    Learning and teaching methods

    This module will be delivered through a range of seminars, open access support sessions, and tutorials:

    • AU and SU Terms: 2 x 2-hour seminars
    • SP Term: 1 x 2-hour seminar and 1 x 2-hour tutorial

    Teaching and learning on Essex Pathways modules offers students the ability to develop the foundation knowledge, skills, and competencies to study at the undergraduate level, through a curriculum that is purposely designed to provide an exceptional learning experience. All teaching, learning and assessment materials will be available via Moodle in a consistent and user-friendly manner.


    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 Coursework weighting
    Coursework   Reflective Presentation - week 30/31    30% 
    Coursework   Paraphrase of sentences     10% 
    Coursework   Introductory Paragraph    10% 
    Coursework   Argument Development    20% 
    Coursework   Scaffolded Assignment    30% 

    Additional coursework information

    Formative assessment

    • Students will complete an online Moodle academic integrity task in the Autumn Term.

    Summative assessment

    • Key Skills Portfolio assignment consists of three elements:
      Portfolio entry 1: a 250-word paraphrase of a text selected to be related to a pathway-specific subject, such as Management, Marketing, Economics or Finance-based themes.
    • Portfolio entry 2: a 150-word introduction to an essay whose title is generated by the students themselves, provided it is related to their future course of study.
    • Portfolio entry 3: two paragraphs of 250 words each demonstrating the student's ability to present a logical and well-supported argument related to a topic connected to Business or Economics.
    • Scaffolded assignment (1,000 words) based on a range of Business or Economics topics chosen by the lecturer to be submitted in the Spring term. The assignment will develop the student's ability to produce an extended piece of writing in the most relevant genre for their pathway. The topic is selected in consultation with subject Module Leaders on the pathway.
    • Reflective presentation (7-10 mins) to take place in the Summer Term. Presentations are delivered individually and aim to develop student's oral communication skills as well as the ability to work in both offline and online modes and to become more reflective learners.

    Reassessment strategy

    • Failed coursework - Resubmit a piece of coursework (1,000 words) which will be marked as 100% of the new module mark. The reassessment task will enable the relevant learning outcomes to be met.
    • If the group presentation has failed or has not been attempted, students will also be required to submit a 500-word presentation in notes/slides format. The weighting will be divided equally between the assignment and the 500-word presentation.

    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
    Mr Brendan Elsted, email: bmelsted@essex.ac.uk.
    Brendan Elsted
    Helen Hearn (hhearn@essex.ac.uk or 01206 872842)



    External examiner

    No external examiner information available for this module.
    Available via Moodle
    Of 48 hours, 48 (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), module, or event type.


    Further information
    Essex Pathways

    * Please note: due to differing publication schedules, items marked with an asterisk (*) base their information upon the previous academic year.

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