SPCHSCI 790A/B : Research Project


2023 Semester One (1233) / Semester Two (1235) (30 POINTS)

Course Prescription

No prescription

Course Overview

This course prepares you to be critical, evidence-based clinicians as well as to conduct a one-year clinical research project. Critical thinking and an ability to be a high quality consumer of research is spiralled through your two-year curriculum. You have already been introduced to many elements of research work throughout your MSLT(Prac) Programme. We need strong advocates in our profession to fight for better services for those with communication difficulties. This takes an ability to collect relevant data and communicate it widely.  

This course supports you to understand qualitative and quantitative research design, methods and data analysis. You will complete a self-directed research project with the support of your allocated research supervisor. 

Course Requirements

Restriction: SPCHSCI 735, 742, 745 To complete this course students must enrol in SPCHSCI 790 A and B, or SPCHSCI 790

Capabilities Developed in this Course

Capability 1: Disciplinary Knowledge and Practice
Capability 2: Critical Thinking
Capability 3: Solution Seeking
Capability 4: Communication and Engagement
Capability 5: Independence and Integrity
Capability 6: Social and Environmental Responsibilities

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:
  1. Identify the ethical issues underlying research involving human participants (Capability 1, 5 and 6)
  2. Critically evaluate the evidence base and research design for your research project (Capability 1, 2 and 3)
  3. Perform basic data management, statistical analysis and graphing techniques using Excel (Capability 1, 3 and 5)
  4. Identify data types and choose an appropriate analysis approach for both qualitative & quantitative research in the area of communication science (Capability 1, 2 and 5)
  5. Interpret quantitative analysis results (Capability 2 and 5)
  6. Demonstrate effective written skills for critical review of literature and presentation of research ideas (Capability 4, 5 and 6)
  7. Demonstrate understanding of the principles of Kaupapa Māori theory as they relate to research (Capability 1, 5 and 6)
  8. Conduct research data collection for chosen topic (Capability 3, 4 and 5)
  9. Demonstrate self-direction, ethical behaviour and organisational skills in the conduct of research (Capability 5 and 6)
  10. Demonstrate effective research dissemination skills (Capability 4, 5 and 6)


Assessment Type Percentage Classification
Research Project including client-appropriate summary 100% Individual Coursework
Assessment Type Learning Outcome Addressed
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Research Project including client-appropriate summary


Tuākana Science is a multi-faceted programme for Māori and Pacific students providing topic specific tutorials, one-on-one sessions, test and exam preparation and more. Explore your options at

Tuākana Science is a multi-faceted programme for Māori and Pacific students providing topic specific tutorials, one-on-one sessions, test and exam preparation and more. Explore your options at Tuākana Programme website.

This course is supported by the Tuākana in Science Programme, which facilitates the success and wellbeing of our Māori and Pacific students. The foundation of the Tuākana Programme is the Tuākana-Teina principle an integral relationship in which older or more expert Tuākana (traditionally brother, sister or cousin) guides a younger or less expert Teina (traditionally younger sibling or cousin). This is a reciprocal relationship which fosters safe learning and teaching environments. Read more here: https://www.auckland.ac.nz/en/science/study-with-us/maori-and-pacific-at-the-faculty/tuakana-programme.html

Key Topics

Research design, ethics, Kaupapa Māori Research, data collection, data analysis, data presentation, oral presentation, scientific writing

Special Requirements

Class presentations are compulsory.

Workload Expectations

This course is an extended 30 point course across two semesters and students are expected to spend 10 hours per week involved in each 15 point course that they are enrolled in.

For this course, you can expect 30 hours of lectures, a one day presentation day, as well as independent working on your research project.

Delivery Mode

Campus Experience

Attendance is expected at scheduled activities.
Lectures will be available as recordings. 

Learning Resources

Course materials are made available in a learning and collaboration tool called Canvas which also includes reading lists and lecture recordings (where available).

Please remember that the recording of any class on a personal device requires the permission of the instructor.

John Creedy (2008) Research without tears: from first idea to published output. Cheltenham, UK ; Northampton, MA : Edward Elgar Pub.,.
Helen Sword’s ‘Stylish academic writing’ ISBN-13: 9780674064485, Publisher: Harvard University Press, Publication date: 4/2/2012
Brewer, K.M., Lewis, T., Bond, C., Armstrong, E., Hill, A. E., Nelson, A., Coffin, J. (2019) Maintaining cultural integrity in Australian Aboriginal and Māori qualitative research. In Lyons, R & McAllister, L (eds) Qualitative Research in Communication Disorders: An Introduction for Students and Clinicians. J&R Press.
Brewer, K. M., Harwood, M. L. N., McCann, C. M., Crengle, S. M., & Worrall, L. E. (2014). The Use of Interpretive Description within Kaupapa Māori Research. Qualitative Health Research, 24(9), 1287–1297. 10.1177/1049732314546002 (probably the most important one to read) 
Pihama, L. (2010). Kaupapa Māori Theory: Transforming Theory in Aotearoa. He Pukenga Korero: A Journal of Māori Studies, 9(2), 5-14.

Student Feedback

During the course Class Representatives in each class can take feedback to the staff responsible for the course and staff-student consultative committees.

At the end of the course students will be invited to give feedback on the course and teaching through a tool called SET or Qualtrics. The lecturers and course co-ordinators will consider all feedback.

Your feedback helps to improve the course and its delivery for all students.

Student feedback last year was that they'd like to be credited for their client-appropriate summary which is a standard dissemination responsibility for ethics. This is now in the marking criteria for the research thesis. 

Academic Integrity

The University of Auckland will not tolerate cheating, or assisting others to cheat, and views cheating in coursework as a serious academic offence. The work that a student submits for grading must be the student's own work, reflecting their learning. Where work from other sources is used, it must be properly acknowledged and referenced. This requirement also applies to sources on the internet. A student's assessed work may be reviewed against online source material using computerised detection mechanisms.

Class Representatives

Class representatives are students tasked with representing student issues to departments, faculties, and the wider university. If you have a complaint about this course, please contact your class rep who will know how to raise it in the right channels. See your departmental noticeboard for contact details for your class reps.


The content and delivery of content in this course are protected by copyright. Material belonging to others may have been used in this course and copied by and solely for the educational purposes of the University under license.

You may copy the course content for the purposes of private study or research, but you may not upload onto any third party site, make a further copy or sell, alter or further reproduce or distribute any part of the course content to another person.

Inclusive Learning

All students are asked to discuss any impairment related requirements privately, face to face and/or in written form with the course coordinator, lecturer or tutor.

Student Disability Services also provides support for students with a wide range of impairments, both visible and invisible, to succeed and excel at the University. For more information and contact details, please visit the Student Disability Services’ website http://disability.auckland.ac.nz

Special Circumstances

If your ability to complete assessed coursework is affected by illness or other personal circumstances outside of your control, contact a member of teaching staff as soon as possible before the assessment is due.

If your personal circumstances significantly affect your performance, or preparation, for an exam or eligible written test, refer to the University’s aegrotat or compassionate consideration page https://www.auckland.ac.nz/en/students/academic-information/exams-and-final-results/during-exams/aegrotat-and-compassionate-consideration.html.

This should be done as soon as possible and no later than seven days after the affected test or exam date.

Learning Continuity

In the event of an unexpected disruption, we undertake to maintain the continuity and standard of teaching and learning in all your courses throughout the year. If there are unexpected disruptions the University has contingency plans to ensure that access to your course continues and course assessment continues to meet the principles of the University’s assessment policy. Some adjustments may need to be made in emergencies. You will be kept fully informed by your course co-ordinator/director, and if disruption occurs you should refer to the university website for information about how to proceed.

The delivery mode may change depending on COVID restrictions. Any changes will be communicated through Canvas.

Student Charter and Responsibilities

The Student Charter assumes and acknowledges that students are active participants in the learning process and that they have responsibilities to the institution and the international community of scholars. The University expects that students will act at all times in a way that demonstrates respect for the rights of other students and staff so that the learning environment is both safe and productive. For further information visit Student Charter https://www.auckland.ac.nz/en/students/forms-policies-and-guidelines/student-policies-and-guidelines/student-charter.html.


Elements of this outline may be subject to change. The latest information about the course will be available for enrolled students in Canvas.

In this course students may be asked to submit coursework assessments digitally. The University reserves the right to conduct scheduled tests and examinations for this course online or through the use of computers or other electronic devices. Where tests or examinations are conducted online remote invigilation arrangements may be used. In exceptional circumstances changes to elements of this course may be necessary at short notice. Students enrolled in this course will be informed of any such changes and the reasons for them, as soon as possible, through Canvas.

Published on 23/06/2023 03:15 p.m.