F21RP Research Methods and Project Planning

Dr Ioannis Konstas

Course co-ordinator(s): Dr Ioannis Konstas (Edinburgh), Dr Ryad Soobany (Dubai).


  • To enable students to develop skills in critical thinking, research planning, academic writing and experimental design appropriate for a post-graduate programme.
  • To enable students to gain skills in project planning and an awareness of legal, social and professional issues relevant for IT professionals.

Detailed Information

Course Description: Link to Official Course Descriptor.

Pre-requisites: none.

Linked course(s): F21MP Masters Project and Dissertation .

Location: Dubai, Edinburgh.

Semester: 2.


  • Research aims and objectives, literature search, critical analysis and review.
  • Technical writing.
  • Project planning, testing, risk analysis, requirements and design.
  • Human factors in software development.
  • Experimental design and software evaluation.
  • Professional standards.
  • Legal, social, ethical and professional issues in IT.

Learning Outcomes: Subject Mastery

Understanding, Knowledge and Cognitive Skills Scholarship, Enquiry and Research (Research-Informed Learning)

  • Ability to write literature review which critically evaluates research and current technical developments against a stated aim.
  • Ability to search for and evaluate the value of written and online material.
  • A critical understanding of the role of human factors in software development, and of a range of techniques for designing and evaluating with users in mind.
  • A detailed understanding of general issues in experimental design, and how to verify a research hypothesis.
  • An ability to apply general methodologies for project planning, and more specific methodologies related to IT projects.

Learning Outcomes: Personal Abilities

Industrial, Commercial & Professional Practice Autonomy, Accountability & Working with Others Communication, Numeracy & ICT

  • A proper appreciation of current professional standards in software documentation, and professional legal and ethical standards relevant to the IT industry.
  • Ability to work independently on a small project, planning and managing time.
  • Ability to present work effectively to others, orally and written.

An ability to use software tools appropriate to IT project planning and evaluation.

Assessment Methods: Due to covid, assessment methods for Academic Year 2021/22 may vary from those noted on the official course descriptor. Please see:
- Maths (F1) Course Weightings 2021/22
- Computer Science (F2) Course Weightings 2021/22
- AMS (F7) Course Weightings 2021/22

SCQF Level: 11.

Credits: 15.