Postgraduate Research Techniques Diploma
Level 3 / Quality Licence Scheme / ODL87
over 12 months and £ deposit
over 12 months and £ deposit
12 months tutor support
24hr Access to
Course, assignments & tutor
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Quality Licence Scheme
NUS Card Eligibility
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This Diploma will be of much benefit to students looking to complete a PhD where collecting and analysing research plays a very important role.
The course will be of particular benefit to graduates who are contemplating continuing their studies into postgraduate research and wish to obtain a solid foundation in the methods and techniques for conducting research. The course will also appeal to anyone who has an occupation where research is considered a vital part of that job function.
Materials can be studied online or students have the option to have the materials delivered for an additional charge.
The course ends with an online examination once the student has studied all ten modules.
Module One - Introduction to Postgraduate Research
Provides the foundation in terms of understanding how postgraduate research is conducted, an early introduction to the varying methods and techniques employed and quality expectations from both University and Research Institutions in conducting field research programmes.
Module Two - Conducting Quantitative Research
A study that aims to quantify attitudes or behaviors, measure variables on which they hinge, compare, and point out correlations. It is most often conducted via a survey on a sampling that must be representative so that the results can be extrapolated to the entire population studied. It requires the development of standardised and codifiable measurement instruments (structured questionnaires). Deals with facts, figures and measurements, and produces data which can be readily analysed. Measurable data is gathered from a wide range of sources, and it is the analysis and interpretation of the relationships across this data that gives the information researchers are looking for. These data are collected using numbers, perhaps through answers to questionnaires. The numbers are then examined using statistical tests to see if the results have happened by chance.
Module Three - Conducting Qualitative Research
Research that gathers information, which is varied, in depth and rich. The information sought is about how something is experienced and not specifically about facts and figures. Information from qualitative research is often more difficult to interpret, partly because it cannot be 'measured'. The emphasis is on the quality and depth of information. These data might be collected in the form of in-depth interviews with participants. In addition, An exploratory study (to explore an unknown sector, identify the main dimensions of a problem, draw assumptions, understand motivations) or operational study based on in depth analysis of interviewee responses (in a group or individually), typically in what's known as "focus groups." It most often deals with a restricted sample of individuals that does not necessarily need to be representative. It may be the preliminary phase of a quantitative study or stand alone research.
Module Four - Conducting Empirical Research
Empirical Research is any research that bases its findings on direct or indirect observation as its test of reality. Such research may also be conducted according to hypotheticodeductive procedures, such as those developed from the work of R. A. Fisher. The researcher attempts to describe accurately the interaction between the instrument (which may be as simple as the human eye) and the entity being observed. If instrumentation is involved, the researcher is expected to calibrate her/his instrument by applying it to known standard objects and documenting the results before applying it to unknown objects.
In practice, the accumulation of evidence for or against any particular theory involves planned research designs for the collection of empirical data. Several typographies for such designs have been suggested, one of the most popular of which comes from Campbell and Stanley (1963). They are responsible for popularizing the widely cited distinction among pre-experimental, experimental, and quasiexperimental designs and are staunch advocates of the central role of randomized experiments in educational research.
Module Five - Conducting Case Study Research
A case study is a particular method of qualitative research. Rather than using large samples and following a rigid protocol to examine a limited number of variables, case study methods involve an in-depth, longitudinal examination of a single instance or event: a case. They provide a systematic way of looking at events, collecting data, analyzing information, and reporting the results. As a result the researcher may gain a sharpened understanding of why the instance happened as it did, and what might become important to look at more extensively in future research. Case studies lend themselves especially to generating (rather than testing) hypotheses.
Module Six - Basic and Applied Research
Basic Research Basic research (also called fundamental or pure research) has as its primary objective the advancement of knowledge and the theoretical understanding of the relations among variables (see statistics). It is exploratory and often driven by the researcher's curiosity, interest, or hunch. It is conducted without any practical end in mind, although it may have unexpected results pointing to practical applications. The terms "basic" or "fundamental" indicate that, through theory generation, basic research provides the foundation for further, sometimes applied research. As there is no guarantee of short-term practical gain, researchers often find it difficult to obtain funding for basic research. Research is a subset of invention. Examples of questions asked in basic research:
- Does string theory provide physics with a grand unification theory?
- Which aspects of genomes explain organismal complexity?
- How can computational methods be efficiently applied to larger and larger molecular systems?
Applied Research - Applied research is done to solve specific, practical questions; its primary aim is not to gain knowledge for its own sake. It can be exploratory, but is usually descriptive. It is almost always done on the basis of basic research. Applied research can be carried out by academic or industrial institutions. Often, an academic institution such as a university will have a specific applied research program funded by an industrial partner interested in that program. Common areas of applied research include electronics, informatics, computer science, process engineering, and drug design. Examples of question asked in applied research:
- How can Canada's wheat crops be protected from grasshoppers?
- What is the most efficient and effective vaccine against influenza?
- How can communication among workers in large companies be improved?
- How can the Great Lakes be protected against the effects of greenhouse gas?
There are many instances when the distinction between basic and applied research is not clear. It is not unusual for researchers to present their project in such a light as to 'slot' it into either applied or basic research, depending on the requirements of the funding sources. The question of genetic codes is a good example. Unraveling it for the sake of knowledge alone would be basic research - but what, for example, if knowledge of it also has the benefit of making it possible to alter the code so as to make a plant commercially viable? Some say that the difference between basic and applied research lies in the time span between research and reasonably foreseeable practical applications.
Module Seven - Evaluative Research
The purpose of evaluative research is to gather data to make decisions about the effectiveness or desirability of a program or a practice.
Module Eight - Glossary of Research Methods and Techniques
Glossary of the many different approaches to conducting postgraduate research. This list is fairly comprehensive and is provided for those students that require to go to the next level of detail in this subject matter.
Module Nine - Conducting Research on the Internet
The Internet provides access to a wealth of information on countless topics contributed by people throughout the world. On the Internet, a user has access to a wide variety of services: vast information sources, electronic mail, file transfer, interest group membership, interactive collaboration, multimedia displays, and more. The Internet consists primarily of a variety of access protocols. These include e-mail, FTP, HTTP, Telnet, and Usenet news. Many of these protocols feature programs that allow users to search for and retrieve material made available by the protocol. For background information on Internet access protocols, see A Basic Guide to the Internet.
The Internet is not a library in which all its available items are identified and can be retrieved by a single catalog. In fact, no one knows how many individual files reside on the Internet. The number runs into a few billion and is growing at a rapid pace. The Internet is a self-publishing medium. This means that anyone with little or now technical skills and access to a host computer can publish on the Internet. It is important to remember this when you locate sites in the course of your research. Internet sites change over time according to the commitment and inclination of the creator. Some sites demonstrate an expert's knowledge, while others are amateur efforts. Some may be updated daily, while others may be outdated. As with any information resource, it is important to evaluate what you find on the Internet. For more information, see Evaluating Internet Resources. Also be aware that the addresses of Internet sites frequently change. Web sites can disappear altogether. Do not expect stability on the Internet. One of the most efficient ways of conducting research on the Internet is to use the World Wide Web. Since the Web includes most Internet protocols, it offers access to a great deal of what is available on the Internet.
Module Ten - Research in Commerce and Industry
An examination of conducting research in a business setting. This unit will look at a variety of different business settings and the role in which research plays a key component in the business.
No previous knowledge or experience is essential to study this course.
Final online multiple choice examination counts for 100% of the final grade. Throughout the course there are ten SAPs (coursework) and a thesis. The course clearly states that this is not mandatory to complete as it has no bearing on the final grade. We do suggest that students complete these as this will not only assist them in examination preparation but also will give the student the skill set should they wish to continue their studies (continuous professional development) at a higher level.
At the end of this course successful learners will receive a Certificate of Achievement from Quality Licence Scheme and a Learner Unit Summary (which lists the components the learner has completed as part of the course).
The course has been endorsed under the Quality Licence Scheme.The Provider has undergone an external quality check to ensure that the organisation and the courses it offers, meet defined quality criteria. The completion of this course alone does not lead to a regulated qualification* but may be used as evidence of knowledge and skills gained.
The Learner Unit Summary may be used as evidence towards Recognition of Prior Learning if you wish to progress your studies in this subject. To this end the learning outcomes of the course have been benchmarked at QLS Level 3 against level descriptors published by Ofqual, to indicate the depth of study and level of demand/complexity involved in successful completion by the learner.
The Quality Licence Scheme is part of the Skills and Education Group, a charitable organisation that unites education and skills-orientated organisations that share similar values and objectives. With more than 100 years of collective experience, the Skills and Education Group’s strategic partnerships create opportunities to inform, influence and represent the wider education and skills sector.
The Skills and Education Group’s knowledge and experience of working within the awarding sector enables them to work with training providers, through the Quality Licence Scheme, to help them develop high-quality courses and/or training programmes for the non-regulated market.
*Regulated qualification refers to those qualifications that are regulated by Ofqual / CCEA / Qualification Wales.
Module 1: Introduction to Postgraduate Research
Module 2: Conducting Quantitative Research
Module 3: Conducting Qualitative Research
Module 4: Conducting Empirical Research
Module 5: Conducting Case Study Research
Module 6: Basic and Applied Research
Module 7: Evaluative Research
Module 8: Glossary of Research Methods and Techniques
Module 9: Conducting Research on the Internet
Module 10: Research in Commerce and Industry
12 Months Tutor Support. Tutors are available to answer student questions relating to course materials and to comment on the assignments that are sent in to state how well students have understood the unit content.
NCC originally stood for the National Consortium of FE (Further Education) Colleges. This brought together the FE Colleges to achieve the best provision. Regular national meetings were attended by both Colleges and Government agencies who funded them. This was very helpful to them both to best deliver training to their students.
For more than 25 years NCC has supplied FE Colleges with learning materials as well as student marketing.
NCC now specialise in online training of a very high quality to students both self-funded, paid for by schools, employers and training providers.
Distance learning is the most flexible and convenient approach to studying. There is no need for you to attend college and you can study anytime, anyplace, anywhere that fits in with your lifestyle. Distance learning programmes are ideal for people who may have a job, family commitments, or any other commitment that won’t allow them time off to study.
Both our online and paper courses are completed via an online learning portal (LMS) which you can access after you receive your login details by email. Please ensure that you check your junk email if you do not receive your login details within 48 hours.
All learners will submit their assignments, receive feedback and correspond with their tutor directly through the LMS. If you require help from our support team, then simply email email@example.com.
If you opt for the online course, you will not receive any course materials through the post. Everything is available via the LMS.
If you opt for the paper version, you are simply paying for a study book to be printed and posted to your home, or place of work. You will use this book as a reference guide, but you will still be required to upload your assignments and correspond with your tutor via the LMS.
If you are unable to access our online LMS, we do have alternative options available, so please email firstname.lastname@example.org in order to request further support.
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The cost largely depends on the type and size of the course. The course cost is determined by the expenses associated with its provision, taking into consideration the course's size and complexity, development costs, the presence of a study materials, and the level of tutor support required. Some courses also necessitate additional in-person assessments by assessors, which incur additional expenses and consequently affect the course's cost.
All prices are clearly stated on the course description page and will always be displayed prior to you committing to purchase a course.
Please note that there may be additional fees required should your course require an external invigilated assessment, such as A Levels, ICB qualifications etc. To clarify, please speak to a course advisor.
Once you've chosen your course, you have two options for enrolment:
- You can purchase the course online by clicking the "Buy now" button, which will enrol you automatically.
- Alternatively, you can call our helpline at 0333 3445 690, and our expert course advisors will assist you in signing up for the course and arrange for the delivery of any requested additional learning materials to your address.
All courses are available to purchase in full or via affordable monthly payments over 12 months. A £29 non-refundable deposit is required for monthly payments, and you will be required to set up a monthly direct debit.
We do not require you to complete a credit check to sign up for monthly payments.
We guarantee that you will receive any course materials ordered within 5 working days of registering, but for many of our courses it may take no more than 48 hours.
The course materials are always sent to you via a tracked courier service, to ensure that you receive your study book within our stated period.
All the relevant information required to complete your course is available via the LMS. Additional research via the internet is encouraged, depending on the level you are working at, to bolster knowledge of the subject area.
There is no requirement to purchase any additional materials.
You will have access to a dedicated personal tutor whom you can contact through the Learning Management System (LMS) for assistance and guidance on any course-related matters. Your tutor will only initiate contact in response to your messages. If you encounter any difficulties reaching your tutor, please don't hesitate to email us at email@example.com
Many courses require you to submit work to your tutor during the period of study, and your tutor will assess your work and provide feedback to you within 10 working days. Your tutor is available to you as much as you need them.
Please note that the course includes tutor support for a duration of 12 months. If you require additional time, please inform us, and we will make every effort to provide you with an option for a paid extension, if feasible, to assist you in completing your course.
Please be aware that our tutors are actively assisting multiple learners, and to ensure they are not inundated with excessive workloads, we have implemented a policy limiting learners to submitting a maximum of three units of work for evaluation at any given time. We recommend that you upload your completed units as you finish them. This way, you can benefit from your tutor's feedback to enhance your future assignment submissions.
Your work will be marked and feedback returned to you within 10 working days after submission. This is because our tutors are required to provide detailed, considered feedback to our learners that may take a while to formulate. We find that by working this way, our learners actually complete their course in less time, as they rarely need to submit an assignment more than twice.
Whilst it is possible to submit multiple assignments at the same time, we advise that our learners submit only one at a time. We want our learners to develop as they progress through their course, and find this is best achieved when a student embarks on a new module having taken into account tutor feedback from the previous submission.
Kindly note that our tutors are currently supporting multiple learners simultaneously. In order to maintain a balanced workload for them, we have established a policy that restricts learners to submitting a maximum of three units of work for evaluation at any given time.
Depending on the course you have chosen, and the amount of time you can commit, it could take from 6 weeks to 12 months to complete your course. Your end of support date is when you need to have your course copmpleted by in order to be able to be certificated, this is usually 12 months from purchase.
The duration of the course is largely down to you. The beauty of home learning is that it allows you complete flexibility to fit your studies around your lifestyle and other commitments. You can dedicate as much, or as little, time as you want to your studies - no one will be chasing you for your work or asking why you haven’t submitted an assignment.
We do strongly recommend, though, that before you purchase a course you assess your ability to commit the necessary time to completing the course in a timeframe that will not leave you losing your motivation.
All of our courses are accredited, so you need to show that you have acquired the knowledge to pass the course – this may involve sitting an examination, but it depends on the course you have chosen.
Some courses require you to be continually assessed throughout the course, while others may require an end of course exam or assignment (which may be completed at home) to be submitted to your tutor.
Certain types of qualifications, A-levels and GCSEs for example, do require you to sit invigilated exams at a registered test centre. You will need to organise and pay for the examinations yourself, however full details of what you need to do will be available from the centre who are delivering the qualification.
If in doubt, please email firstname.lastname@example.org, NCC can then discuss or put you in touch directly with the course provider.
All of our courses are accredited and you will receive a certificate upon successful completion of the course.
For more information about this please see the section of the website that details how awarding bodies work and what the different types of qualifications are: https://www.ncchomelearning.co.uk/awarding-organisations
Yes, you can take as many courses as your time allows, but we would recommend that you clearly evaluate how much time you can commit to your courses of study.
The good news is that if your circumstances change you can always take a limited break and come back to your studies to save your paid for support.
If you decide to enrol on more than one course at the same time, speak to our enquiries team for any bundle deals or offers.
Certainly, in most instances, there are no geographical constraints on where you can undertake your studies. However, it's important to note that specific courses may be subject to geographical limitations imposed by the Awarding Organisation, and these restrictions will be clearly stated in the course description.
You just need to be aware that all tutors are based in the UK and work may need to be submitted to them via post, although in most cases e-mail can be used.
Where the course requires that you sit an invigilated exam at a test centre, there are many exam centres outside of the UK. However, we would advise that you check with us before purchasing one of these courses if you want to study from abroad.
If, after receiving the course, you decide it isn’t the right course for you, you may return the materials within 14 days, provided you have not yet submitted any coursework for evaluation. Please note that you will be responsible for covering the return shipping costs. We will refund your payment, minus a non-refundable deposit of £29. Additionally, you have the option to select an alternative course that better matches your goals and aspirations.
For any help on cancelling your course please email email@example.com, we will only deal with cancellation enquiries via email.
Totum is the new brand for UK student cards and replaces the old NUS student card. NCC students are eligible to sign-up for the Totum card where applicable, giving access to a multitude of retail, food and travel special discounts. For more information, you can visit their website: https://www.totum.com/
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