Systematic Literature Review Dissertation (937C8)

60 credits, Level 7 (Masters)

Spring and summer teaching

The literature review-based dissertation module is a comprehensive, research-intensive component. It challenges you to deeply engage with existing scholarly works in the chosen area of psychological study. This module is designed to develop advanced critical thinking, analytical and synthesis skills. It guides you to critically examine and integrate a wide range of scholarly articles, books and other relevant sources.

Throughout the module, you are expected to identify and define a specific psychological research question or problem, demonstrating a thorough understanding of its context and significance within the broader field. The literature review forms the backbone of the dissertation. It requires you to methodically search, select and appraise relevant research, while critically analysing themes, methodologies, findings and theoretical frameworks. This process:

  • familiarises you with the current state of research in your chosen topic
  • helps you identify gaps in existing knowledge and potential avenues for future research.

Emphasis is placed on developing a coherent, logically structured narrative that weaves together various strands of research into a comprehensive overview. You learn to balance the presentation of data with critical interpretation, culminating in a dissertation that demonstrates your ability to engage with complex ideas and contribute meaningfully to academic discussions in psychology.

This module is essential for those aiming to pursue further research or a professional career in psychology, providing a solid foundation in literature analysis and academic writing.


100%: Lecture


100%: Written assessment (Dissertation)

Contact hours and workload

This module is approximately 600 hours of work. This breaks down into about 10 hours of contact time and about 590 hours of independent study. The University may make minor variations to the contact hours for operational reasons, including timetabling requirements.

We regularly review our modules to incorporate student feedback, staff expertise, as well as the latest research and teaching methodology. We’re planning to run these modules in the academic year 2024/25. However, there may be changes to these modules in response to feedback, staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let you know of any material changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.