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Dissertation MSc Politics


  • Credit value: 60 credits at Level 7
  • Convenor and tutor: Professor Deborah Mabbett
  • Assessment: a 12,000-15,000-word dissertation (100%)

Module description

The dissertation counts for a third of your degree. It is structured with chapters which set out your research question, discuss relevant academic literature and present the results of empirical enquiry. Your dissertation supervisor will help you find and refine a research question, as well as guiding you towards relevant literature and advising you on appropriate research techniques. Alongside individual meetings with your supervisor, workshops are conducted to clarify expectations and enable you to learn from your fellow students’ ideas.

You may study any topic(s) related to the study of politics including, but not limited to:

  • political institutions
  • public opinion
  • political communication
  • public policy (of specific sectors or more generically)
  • political economy
  • nationalism, conflict and democracy.

Learning objectives

By the end of this module, you will be able to:

  • formulate a hypothesis or argument and examine or pursue it with a sustained analysis
  • synthesise specialised academic literature, and demonstrate critical engagement with it
  • search systematically for evidence and data, and present and evaluate them in the light of their limitations and contradictions
  • convey the findings of research in a way that reflects the academic expectations of a master’s.