A higher degree by research involves training in research methods and systematic, high level study of a research project. The nature of the work and the time it takes to finish the research means a research degree is demanding and needs great commitment.
You must present your results in a thesis, explain the methods used in your research and defend them in an oral examination.
To get an MPhil you must critically investigate and evaluate an approved topic and display an understanding of suitable research methods.
Materials and Engineering Research Institute (MERI)
MERI is a multi-disciplinary research institute encompassing four research centres each with their own specialist groups operating within them. We undertake high quality academic research across a range of disciplines and apply this research knowledge in a commercial and industrial context. Research areas include • polymers and composites • solar energy • structural integrity and corrosion • functional coatings • simulation and modelling • robotics.
In the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise we were the leading post–92 university in metallurgy and materials (UoA29). 75 per cent of our staff were judged to be internationally leading and we obtained a Times Higher Education average score of 2.15 reflecting the quality of our work and world class staff.
Our staff include • chemists • materials scientists • physicists • computer scientists • mechanical, electronic and electrical engineers, all working on individual or collaborative projects shared between research centres. Supported by a £6m equipment base, which will shortly undergo a £4m refurbishment, this inter-disciplinary approach enables us to solve complex problems ranging from fracture of artificial implants through to designing surfaces that can withstand frictional temperatures in excess of 1,000 degrees centigrade. Solutions to these kinds of problems put MERI at the top in terms of industrial collaboration.
The Materials Research and Analysis Service (MARS) is also a key strength in the research institute, established to provide regional business with access to research facilities and analysis, which enhances the capability of companies in terms of new and improved products.
Evidence of MERI’s research strength is reflected in the patent portfolio that currently consists of 22 granted patents with another 17 applications in progress.
MERI is made up of five centres of excellence
Training and development
An extensive range of training and development opportunities are available to doctoral researchers through the doctoral skills training series and MERI-based training.
Skills training for postgraduate research
This course will comprise 4 main sessions:
All of the sessions are mandatory for all MERI research students.
Weekly seminar programme
Speakers are invited weekly to discuss their latest research with our staff and students.
This session introduces you to the principle of research ethics and the Sheffield Hallam procedures for ethical clearance. It will also involve you doing an initial ethic checklist for your research project and introduce the online EPIGIUM module ethics 1, which all Sheffield Hallam research students must complete.
RefWorks is a web-based bibliographic system with which you can build up a database of all of your reference material. It is flexible and very powerful, particularly when it comes to outputting reference lists for papers and thesis.
Introduction to bibliographic databases
As a researcher it is vital to be able to access relevant high level information. Here you learn more sophisticated information retrieval skills and see how to use subject specific databases relevant to your research area.
Health and safety for postgraduate research
The session aims to provide clear health and safety guidelines for new postgraduate researchers around personal safety and safety of others within the university environment, including and laboratories & workshops.
Advanced measurement techniques
This module aims to equip you with the skills and knowledge to make informed decisions on experimental materials analysis techniques. A number of techniques are demonstrated, the emphasis being on what each can achieve and the potentials for synergy from combining results obtained using from different techniques. This promotes effective decision making in research planning and operation, as well as a broad understanding of what different approaches can be used for.
MATLAB is a powerful programming language for numerical computations. It is employed in a range of industrial and academic environments. MATLAB has numerous built-in functions for engineering, physical, graphical, mathematical and computing applications. Besides this it has a variety of specialised toolboxes for specific applications, such as control systems, machine vision, signal processing and many others. MATLAB also has the symbolic toolbox that allows operating on symbolic expressions. In the first sessions we will cover MATLAB fundamentals, and the following sessions will be tailored to the specific research needs of attendees.
MERI research symposium event
The MERI Research Symposium is an excellent opportunity for both staff and students who are either active researchers, or who are interested in engaging in research, to meet with colleagues from across the faculty, to raise awareness of current research projects. The event will incorporate talks from academic staff and second year MERI PhD students, with poster presentations from final year undergraduate engineering students and first year MERI students.
This course is aimed at first year students to give tips and techniques on how to prepare for the MERI Research Symposium Event, at which they will present a poster.
All second year students are required to give a talk at the MERI Research Symposium Event.
Thesis followed by oral examination
Research degrees are a vital qualification for most academic careers, and for professional specialisation and development in an existing or planned career. The rigorous analytical thinking they involve also demonstrates ability to potential employers in all areas of work.
This programme provides practical, career-orientated training in social science research methods, including research design, data collection and data analysis relating to both qualitative and quantitative modes of inquiry.
Students will have the opportunity to specialise in particular methodologies and to learn more about the application of these methodologies to illuminate important issues and debates in contemporary society.
The programme is designed to provide a fundamental grounding in both quantitative and qualitative research skills, along with the opportunity to specialise in more advanced training in quantitative research, qualitative research or in practical applications of research techniques.
This module offers an introduction to the different styles of social science research as well as guidance and illustrations of how to operationalize research questions and assess them empirically. Students will be shown how to conduct systematic literature searches and how to manage empirical research projects. The module will also explore issues around the ethics of social science research as well as the connection between social science research and policy concerns. It is designed as preparation for undertaking postgraduate research and dissertation work.
This module aims to deepen students' understanding of key debates in social theory and research, providing advanced level teaching for those building upon basic knowledge and undertaking postgraduate research. It is designed to demonstrate and explore how social theory is utilised, critiqued and developed through the pursuit of social science research.
The purpose of this module is to illuminate the theoretical underpinnings of qualitative research. The module will discuss the impact of various theories on the nature and conduct of qualitative research particularly around questions of epistemology and ontology. The role of different types of interviewing in qualitative research will be utilised in order to explore the relationship between theory and methods.
The aim of the module is to provide a comprehensive overview of the theory and practice of measurement and constructing quantitative data in the social sciences. Through lectures and practical exercises, this module will provide students with relevant knowledge of secondary data sources and large datasets, their respective uses and usefulness, and their relevance for the study of contemporary social issues
The module will provide students with an overview of different approaches to qualitative data analysis. It will include introductory training to this skill that includes such techniques as thematic analysis and discourse analysis, as well as computer assisted qualitative data analysis. It will provide the knowledge necessary for the informed use of the qualitative data analysis software package NVivo. The module gives students a base level introduction to the analytical and technical skills in qualitative data analysis appropriate to the production of a Master's dissertation and/or use of CAQDAS software for social science research purposes.
This module provides an introduction to the basics of quantitative data analysis. The module will begin with a brief review of basic univariate and bivariate statistical procedures as well as cover data manipulation techniques. The module is taught through a series of seminars and practical workshops. These two strands are interwoven within each teaching session. Please note that students may be granted an exemption from this module if they have already successfully completed a module that has the equivalent learning outcomes.
This module advances students' confidence and knowledge in the use of SPSS. The module focuses on multivariate regression models, including the appropriate use and awareness of statistical assumptions underlying regression and the testing and refinement of such models.
A dissertation of no more than 15,000 words on a topic relevant to social science research methods training. The thesis will involve either carrying out and reporting on a small social science research project which includes a full and considered description and discussion of the research methods employed or the discussion of a research issue or technique to a level appropriate for publication.
We offer a range of advanced modules in quantitative and qualitative research methods, for example, logistic regression, internet-based research and visual research methods. We also provide specialist modules which reflect the teaching team’s diverse research interests, from the social logic of emotional life to conflict and change in divided societies. Optional modules generally run during the Spring semester and are offered subject to sufficient student demand and staff availability. Students will be able to choose a maximum of three to four option modules (depending on whether they need to complete Quantitative Data Analysis: Foundational). Please note that it is unlikely that all the following modules will be available for 2017/8. Please check with the Programme Director for queries about specific modules.
Study for your MPhil at Sheffield Hallam’s Cultural, Communication and Computing Research Institute (C3RI). C3RI an inspiringly diverse multidisciplinary group which makes connections between the research traditions of
The Institute consists of two research centres
We provide an environment in which each discipline can develop its own approach to research. At the same time we bring people together on questions that cut across traditional subject boundaries.
Research activity at C3RI
Our work covers strategic and applied research as well as covering research into teaching and learning. Much of it is through partnerships with businesses and professional collaborators.
Research is supported by research councils, the European Union, commercial clients, charitable bodies and government.
We support a PhD research programme with over 80 students. We also maintain many knowledge transfer partnerships that support close collaboration between academics, researchers and industrial partners.
C3RI also houses Design Futures, a commercially-focused product and packaging design consultancy group based within Sheffield Hallam University.
Design Futures has had specialist design teams working exclusively on commercial consultancy services for several years. These teams have developed award winning, innovative solutions for many clients, some of which have been patented.
MPhil – two years full-time, or three years part-time
Start dates – September, January or May.
Candidates are required to critically investigate and evaluate an approved topic, to demonstrate an understanding of research methods appropriate to their chosen field and to present and defend a thesis by oral examination.
Each student is allocated a director of studies and a supervisor. Regular meetings between the student and supervisors are scheduled, with targets set for written and oral presentation of research progress.
Some students may be required to complete research training modules if not already studied as part of a masters degree. This can have fee implications for part-time students, but is included in the full-time fee.
Additional training sessions to benefit doctoral students will be arranged and advertised to students, by the Faculty and the central Doctoral School, throughout the year at no additional cost.
Training is followed by, or delivered in conjunction with, theoretical and textual research, analysis and writing, working closely with the supervisors. Students are expected to present seminar papers on their work and to submit written papers for comment. Students will also be expected to attend relevant seminars and presentations from the research seminar series and other doctoral students.
Thesis followed by oral examination
Research degrees are a vital qualification for most academic careers and for professional specialisation within an existing or planned career. The rigorous analytical thinking they involve is also an attractive feature for potential employers of all kinds.
Our MSc Social Science Research (Business and Management Studies) programme will provide you with a comprehensive overview of the key methodological and philosophical debates that shape the social sciences, and equip you with the specialised research tools and skills that useful in business and management.
Accredited by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), our prestigious Social Science Research (Business and Management Studies) MSc degree is designed for those of you who wish to be able to conduct management and business research to MSc level, either in a professional capacity or as a route to further study at PhD level.
On completion of our Social Science Research (Business and Management Studies), you will have met the training requirements for PhD funding from the ESRC, opening up the possibility of securing PhD funding from the ESRC.
Our Social Science Research (Business and Management Studies) programme is taught by experienced and internationally recognised researchers. The strong emphasis on applying qualitative and quantitative skills to tackle research problems – as well as a focus on developing critical thinking skills – will provide a robust foundation for more advanced academic study or research, whilst sharpening the applied research skills of current or aspiring business and management practitioners.
If you choose to study Social Science Research (Business and Management Studies), you will be based at a school that is a leading international player in research and teaching across the business, management, and finance disciplines. The School of Business and Economics is consistently rated as a Top-10 UK business school by national league tables and develops well-rounded, highly employable graduates at undergraduate, postgraduate, MBA, executive and doctoral level.
The School’s research is comprehensive in scope and very highly regarded by academics and practitioners alike, with 75% of our output considered ‘world-leading’ or 'internationally relevant' (and 100% of our Information Management research rated 'world leading' or 'internationally excellent'), according to the most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF 2014).
When coupled with the fact that Loughborough is among the Top 1% of business schools in the world to hold AACSB, EQUIS and AMBA accreditation, the School of Business and Economics provides a dynamic and inspiring environment to undertake the MSc Social Science Research.
Our MSc Social Science Research (Business and Management Studies) programme is designed for graduates wishing to pursue a career in academia; practitioners in management and business, who wish to both develop and strengthen their applied research skills; or those wishing to conduct research in non-academic public and private sector roles, such as think-tanks.
Our Social Science Research (Business and Management Studies) MSc programmes are designed to enable you to develop rigorous research and analytical skills, who are well equipped to progress onto being high level researchers in their chosen field of study.
Social Science Research (Business and Management Studies) covers a wide range of topics; please visit the website to see an up to date list.
The School of Business and Economics is committed to helping you develop the skills and attributes you need to progress successfully in your chosen career.
Accredited by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), this prestigious MSc degree in Social Science Research (Business and Management Studies) is designed for those who wish to be able to conduct management and business research to MSc level, either in a professional capacity or as a route to further study at PhD level.
The strong emphasis on applying qualitative and quantitative skills to tackle research problems – as well as a focus on developing critical thinking skills – will provide a robust foundation for more advanced academic study or research, whilst sharpening the applied research skills of current or aspiring business and management practitioners.