Teaching and Learning Methods
This course can be taken as an elective in Year 2. It aims at enabling the student, subject to agreement in advance with a supervisor, to pursue a topic (or work in a format) which is not otherwise on offer among core or elective courses of the BSc UPDM/Urban Studies. It provides great flexibility and can take the form, for example, of:
- an essay (theoretical, historical, practice-oriented, or polemic), on a well defined question
- a small research report, on a well defined research question
- a documentary film on a well-defined issue, with accompanying commentary
- a photographic project on a well-defined issue, with accompanying commentary
- a design project (drawings and models), with accompanying commentary
- a website, with accompanying commentary
- a travel diary/reportage/report
- a media reportage and/or substantial journalistic piece investigating a topic of current interest.
The topic chosen should be materially different to that explored in the other modules taken as part of the BSc. It cannot be an extended version of a piece of work you have done for another module!
By its nature, the project has no pre-determined content. It should occupy about 100 hours of your time altogether (as it has a 0.5 course unit value).
Aims & Outcomes
The work proposed for a Project X must be carefully formulated and must contribute to the academic coherence of the student's individual course of study. It demands good time-management, and strong independence and autonomy in the organisation of your work. In writing up your proposal you should make it clear what you hope to learn from the experience.
Before you can start on your project, you have to:
- find a staff member to supervise you. Students need to approach individual members of staff who possesses the relevant expertise, interest or enthusiasm for the project, and ask whether that person agrees to be their supervisor. Ask your Year Coordinator to suggest relevant staff if you are unsure. You may have to contact several staff members before coming to an agreement.
- you have to agree on a deadline for submission with your supervisor, which cannot be later than the first Friday in Term 3, FRIDAY 2nd May 2014.
- Once you have discussed and agreed your basic idea with your supervisor, you need to fill in the Project Description Form (attached), send a draft to your supervisor and agree on the content of the proposal. Once this is done, you need to print two copies of the Project Description Form, have them signed by your supervisor and your Year Coordinator, and hand them in to the Planning Office. The Project Description Form will be used as the brief against which your project will be assessed, so it is important you formulate your idea clearly. The criteria for assessment have to be discussed between you and your supervisor and included in the Project Proposal Form at the beginning of the project, so that both of you are clear about these criteria.
- the Project Description Form has to be submitted to the Planning Office no later than Reading Week, Term 1.
Once you start the project, it is your responsibility to arrange meetings with your supervisor when you need to discuss progress. Your supervisor will be able to comment on a draft of your final output in advance of the final submission.
The role of the supervisor is to:
1. Agree a topic, method, format and deadline for the project;
2. Give you guidance to help you get started;
3. Comment on a complete draft before final submission (if you give him/her the draft well in advance of the submission deadline);
4. Mark the work when completed (all projects will be independently second marked and subject to External examiners' judgments).
Remember this is a student-led project in which you are working independently - do not expect your supervisor to direct you too much or 'spoon-feed' you!
Dr Yasmina Beebeejaun
Year 2 Coordinator
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The final submission can be in any format agreed between you and your supervisor: text, drawings, video, models, photography... If your project is a text, it should not go beyond 5,000 words. If your project is visual, a short accompanying text explaining your objective, method, experience of doing the work, and results, must accompany the visual output.
Two copies of the final project must be submitted to the planning office by the deadline agreed with your supervisor, no later than the first Friday in Term 3, FRIDAY 2nd May 2014. Feedback can be expected within 4 weeks. The assessment will be based on the objectives, methods and criteria defined in your Project Proposal Form. It is important you discuss these thoroughly with your supervisor at the beginning of the project, so that both of you are clear about what your project should ideally achieve.
be discussed with the supervisor.