Loughborough University
Leicestershire, UK
LE11 3TU
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Loughborough University

Programme Specifications

Programme Specification

MSc Human Geography Research

Academic Year: 2014/15

This specification provides a concise summary of the main features of the programme and the learning outcomes that a typical student might reasonably be expected to achieve and demonstrate if full advantage is taken of the learning opportunities that are provided.

This specification applies to delivery of the programme in the Academic Year indicated above. Prospective students reviewing this information for a later year of study should be aware that these details are subject to change as outlined in our Terms and Conditions of Study.

This specification should be read in conjunction with:

  • Summary
  • Aims
  • Learning outcomes
  • Structure
  • Progression & weighting

Programme summary

Awarding body/institution Loughborough University
Teaching institution (if different)
Owning school/department Department of Geography - pre 2018
Details of accreditation by a professional/statutory body
Final award MSc
Programme title Human Geography Research
Programme code GYPT37
Length of programme 1 year full-time; 2 years part-time
UCAS code
Admissions criteria


Date at which the programme specification was published Tue, 23 Sep 2014 13:12:11 BST

1. Programme Aims

  • to enhance students’ theoretical understanding of the key concepts, approaches and methods underpinning human geography research;
  • to provide an intellectually stimulating environment in which students can develop the quantitative and qualitative techniques required when undertaking research projects in human geography;
  • to provide students with the opportunity to place human geography research methods in a multidisciplinary context where the value of interdisciplinary analysis is explored;
  • to enhance students’ career and employment opportunities by developing a range of transferable skills that is grounded in the programme.

2. Relevant subject benchmark statements and other external and internal reference points used to inform programme outcomes:

  • Economic and Social Research Council Recognition Exercise criteria 2001 (Section F5 – Human Geography)
  • The Benchmark Statement for Geography

3. Programme Learning Outcomes

3.1 Knowledge and Understanding

On successful completion of this programme, students should be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • the significance of alternative epistemological positions that provide the context for theory construction, research design and the selection of appropriate analytical techniques in human geography;
  • the basic principles of research design and strategy in human geography, including an understanding of how to formulate researchable problems and an appreciation of alternative approaches to research;
  • the application of a range of research methods, both quantitative and qualitative, including their uses, limitations, and applications in human geography research;
  • the research process, from initial proposal through to dissemination of findings.

3.2 Skills and other attributes

a. Subject-specific cognitive skills:

On successful completion of this programme, students should be able to:

  • recognise the existence of varying geographic imaginations and the distinctive contribution of situated geographic knowledges;
  • exhibit knowledge of a range of theoretical and methodological approaches appropriate to the definition, collection, analysis and interpretation of geographic data;
  • assess the merits of research methodologies derived from both the social sciences and humanities in geographic research projects;
  • appreciate the role of primary and secondary data evidence in human geography;
  • identify the potential difficulties evident in undertaking human geographical research, including questions of ethics, morality and safety.
b. Subject-specific practical skills:

On successful completion of this programme, students should be able to:

  • collect geographic data through interview, questionnaire and observational methods;
  • make use of secondary data sources, including maps, statistics, visual images and texts;
  • successfully analyse geographic data via quantitative (statistical) and qualitative (discursive and textual) techniques;
  • manage the research process, conducting and disseminating geographic research in a way that is consistent with both professional practice and the normal principles of research ethics.
c. Key transferable skills:

On successfully completing the course, graduates will have developed key skills in:

  • communicating effectively through writing and graphical communication;
  • making oral presentations;
  • working independently and as part of a team;
  • bibliographic searching and using the Internet as a research tool;
  • analysing numerical information by computer;
  • reading critically;
  • time management.

4. Programme structure

4.1       (i)         COMPULSORY MODULES           (total modular weight 120)

Semester 1



Modular Weight


Research Methods



Globalization: Key Debates and Issues



Textual Analysis Research Techniques


Semester 2



Modular Weight


Doing Global Research



Globalization and Society


4.2       (i)         FURTHER COMPULSORY MODULE

Semester 2

for the award of MSc only                   (total modular weight 60)



Modular Weight




5. Criteria for Progression and Degree Award

In order to be eligible for the award, candidates must satisfy the requirements of Regulation XXI.

Candidates are required to obtain the following in order to be eligible for the award of:

(i) PGCert – 60 credits from modules other than GYP400.

(ii) PGDip – 105 credits from modules other than GYP400 and not less than 40% in the remaining module.

(iii) MSc – 165 credits and not less than 40% in the remaining module.

With the exclusion of module GYP400 (Dissertation), provision will be made for candidates who have the right of re-assessment, and who have achieved at least 60 credits at first attempts, to undergo re-assessment in the University's Special Assessment Period (SAP).

6. Relative Weighting of Parts of the Programme for the Purposes of Final Degree Classification

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