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Quantitative Research Methods

Module titleQuantitative Research Methods
Module codeESS2304
Academic year2024/5
Module staff

Dr Kirsty Brock (Convenor)

Mr Matthew Campbell (Lecturer)

Duration: Term123
Duration: Weeks


Number students taking module (anticipated)


Description - summary of the module content

Module description

This module will help you develop the ability to use statistics in your research. The module will help your critical digestion of the research articles you read and help you appreciate the rationale required in making the correct choices when using statistical analyses, including considering assumptions, limitations and pitfalls. Overall, this module provides you with the tools and techniques required for a dissertation using quantitative methods. There are no pre- or co-requisites for this module, and it is suitable for non-specialist students who have studied related topics at Stage 1.

Module aims - intentions of the module

You are expected to produce a dissertation in the third year of the degree. This may involve quantitative or qualitative methods of inquiry. This module will provide you with the tools to prepare you for a dissertation using quantitative methods. This module will also serve to aid your critical analysis of the results of research articles you read. It will continue on from the issues and concepts featured in the first year. It will look at the development of a research project from conception to completion, concentrating on the forming and shaping of a study using a quantitative approach. As such, this module will involve the development of an understanding of the use of statistics in research, and will introduce you to some of the statistical data analysis techniques that might be used for the dissertation. It will also create an appreciation for the rationale involved in making the correct choices when using statistical analyses, including considering assumptions, limitations, and pitfalls.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

ILO: Module-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 1. Use and evaluate experimental and non-experimental quantitative research design methods
  • 2. Select and employ analyses using SPSS and evaluate and explain the SPSS outputs.

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 3. Describe how statistics are used in research in exercise and sport science
  • 4. Appraise and explain different statistical analyses in order to make an informed choice about which to use.

ILO: Personal and key skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 5. Use computer programs to solve problems and enhance research
  • 6. Competently input, analyse and interpret of various forms of quantitative data.
  • 7. Demonstrate an awareness and understanding of the ethical implications of research

Syllabus plan

Syllabus plan

  • Introduction to the module and revision of correlation, t-test, simple regression, z scores, inferential statistics, descriptive statistics and basic terminology
  • Quantitative research design
  • The basics of data simulation and visualization
  • One-way ANOVA
  • Repeated Measures ANOVA
  • Factorial ANOVA
  • Introduction to the dissertation module and ethics
  • Multiple regression
  • Non-parametric tests

Learning and teaching

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning and Teaching22Lecture
Scheduled Learning and Teaching22Seminars
Guided Independent Study106Completing readings and weekly task on ELE, writing-up lecture/seminar notes, exam preparation


Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Quantitative assessmentSeminar activities which represent exam questions AllSelf-assessment/generic

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Quantitative examination1002 hours 15 minutesAllWritten


Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Quantitative examinationQuantitative examination (100%)AllAugust/September assessment period

Re-assessment notes

Deferral – if you miss an assessment for certificated reasons judged acceptable by the Mitigation Committee, you will normally be either deferred in the assessment or an extension may be granted. The mark given for a re-assessment taken as a result of deferral will not be capped and will be treated as it would be if it were your first attempt at the assessment.

Referral – if you have failed the module overall (i.e. a final overall module mark of less than 40%) you will be required to sit a further examination. If you are successful on referral, your overall module mark will be capped at 40%.


Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

  • Field, A. (2013). Discovering statistics using IBM SPSS statistics. 4th edition. Sage: London
  • Huck, S. W. (2009). Reading statistics and research. New York: Addison-Welsey Longman
  • Nevill, AM; Atkinson, G. and Scott, M.A. (2009) Statistical methods in kinanthropometry and exercise physiology. In Eston RG and Reilly T (Eds) Kinanthropometry and Exercise Physiology Laboratory Manual: Anthropometry, pp 250-299
  • Vincent, W. J. and Weir, J. P. (2012). Statistics in Kinesiology. 4th edition. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics

Further recommended reading:

  • Gratton, C. and Jones, I. (2003). Research Methods for Sport Studies. London: Routledge.
  • Lynch, C. (2010). Doing your Research Project in Sport. Exeter: Learning Matters.

Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources

Module has an active ELE page

Indicative learning resources - Other resources

  • You should also take the opportunity to read exercise and sport science journals e.g., Medicine and Science in Sport and Exercise, Sports Psychology and Journal of Sports Science, noting in particular the types of statistics used and how to interpret statistical results. The special issue of Journal of Sports Sciences (Volume 19, Number 10, October 2001) on research methods will be of particular interest.

Key words search

Quantitative research, experimental design, SPSS, statistics, assumptions, dissertation preparation, ethics

Credit value15
Module ECTS


Module pre-requisites

ESS1701 Introduction to Statistics or equivalent first year statistics module

Module co-requisites


NQF level (module)


Available as distance learning?


Origin date


Last revision date