Research Dissertation

Module Aims

The dissertation is undertaken between March and September, and the main focus will be on self-study. Students will be appointed an academic supervisor to support their independent learning. Students are encouraged to apply the skills and knowledge gained to choose a dissertation topic about which they have a keen interest, the resources to complete, and which is consistent with the research strengths of the Department of Accounting and Finance.

Non-assessed research methods seminars will be provided fortnightly during the spring term to introduce students to appropriate methods and methodologies used in the social sciences and the development of students understanding of many specific techniques that researchers use. An attempt will also be made to increase students' awareness of broader methodological issues and debates, and provide guidance on how to prepare a research proposal for their dissertation.

The Dissertation aims to enable students to demonstrate that they can identify research issue(s) or problem(s), understand different research approaches, apply relevant research methods and analytical techniques and write an academic report. The Dissertation provides the student with the opportunity to study an Accounting and Finance topic of personal interest in considerable depth. It is a demanding aspect of the programme and requires intensive and independent study.

Learning Outcomes

Students who complete the module successfully should be able to:

  • undertake a substantial piece of independent research;
  • demonstrate critical and analytical thinking – challenging the literature, defending methodology, analysing data, collating evidence, relating theory to practice and considering the implications of their work;
  • plan and organise a major project;
  • present their work in an academic research report.


The module will be assessed by a dissertation containing a maximum of 12,000 words (excluding appendices).