Dissertation - Independent Research Project

This information is for the 2019/20 session.

Teacher responsible

Members of Department of Gender Studies.


This course is compulsory on the MSc in Gender, MSc in Gender (Research), MSc in Gender (Sexuality), MSc in Gender, Development and Globalisation, MSc in Gender, Media and Culture, MSc in Gender, Policy and Inequalities and MSc in Women, Peace and Security. This course is available on the MPhil/PhD in Gender. This course is not available as an outside option.

Course content

The dissertation may be on any approved topic within the field of the MSc programme studied. There will be a series of compulsory and optional workshops in the Michaelmas, Lent and Summer Terms supporting this process. Students will be introduced to dissertation guidelines, common difficulties, ethical issues, basics in research practice, managing sources, and the process of research and writing. The sessions will consider challenges raised by quantitative and qualitative methods, and include examples from and approaches to policy research, interviewing, discourse and narrative analysis, oral and visual history forms of narrative, visual and media analysis. The workshop will be team taught within the Department of Gender Studies according to expertise, and will involve student participation.


A combination of compulsory and optional dissertation workshops of up to 90 minutes spread across the MT, LT and ST. Individual supervision sessions assigned early in the LT.  Students on this course will have a reading week in Week 6, in line with departmental policy.


Dissertation (100%, 10000 words) in August.

Additionally, in the LT students will submit milestone documents: (a) title or topic of research; (b) summary proposal including research question, methodological and analytical / theoretical approach; (c) and at the beginning of Summer Term an annotated bibliography.

Student performance results

(2015/16 - 2017/18 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 35
Merit 53.1
Pass 10.2
Fail 1.6

Key facts

Department: Gender Studies

Total students 2018/19: 118

Average class size 2018/19: 20

Controlled access 2018/19: No

Value: One Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Leadership
  • Self-management
  • Team working
  • Problem solving
  • Application of information skills
  • Communication
  • Application of numeracy skills
  • Specialist skills