HAR673: Dissertation


Full-time and part-time students will, complete a research based project with an external organisation (e.g. academic unit, industry or the NHS), or internal placement within ScHARR. This is for a 3 month duration from July to September for full-time students (part-time students may spread this out over the 6 months from July to December).

The project will culminate in a written dissertation that will generally involve adapting or developing a new cost-effectiveness model or addressing a health economic problem that makes use of any of the programme quantitative modules.

The dissertation module provides students with an opportunity to practice and develop the skills acquired on the programme and to prepare them for future employment.


This module aims to:

  • provide an opportunity to apply the skills that you have learnt in the taught modules to a piece of real research in health economics and decision modelling.
  • provide an opportunity to work independently on a 3 month placement with an external organisation or internally within HEDS.

Learning outcomes

By the end of the module, a student will be able to

  1. develop and answer a research question in order to solve a real-world decision making problem.
  2. work independently utilising time management and project planning;
  3. undertake a literature review;
  4. rationalise and justify the selection of modelling methodology
  5. apply modelling skills learnt in the Health Economics and Decision Modelling taught modules;
  6. evaluate the strengths and limitations of their research
  7. describe the findings of their research in a written report

Teaching Methods

Three 1 hour tutorial sessions will be provided throughout the year at appropriate timings. These tutorials will cover what is meant by a dissertation, what is expected of the student, a discussion and appraisal of previous dissertations, how to plan the work and develop a research proposal, and how to write a dissertation.

Students will attend one session (1 x 3 hours) where they will be asked to present their proposed research and the methods they plan to use. All students will be expected give a brief (10-15 minute) presentation of their research proposal and their progress to date. Students will also be expected to critique and provide feedback on other students work.

Students will undertake their dissertation in a setting external to HEDS where possible, or internally, thereby enabling them to gain experience of a different working environment and to provide a practical and real piece of applied analytical research.

Students will be supervised by a mentor at their placement organisation (if undertaking an external placement) and allocated an academic supervisor from HEDS.


Students are expected to spend 60 days (averaging 8 hours per day) on the dissertation over three months (6 for part-time students). Students will attend supervision meetings which will provide general academic support and guidance to allow the dissertation research to progress.

In addition, approximately 115 hours are required in addition to the time spent actually on the placement. This is to allow for background reading, preparing the proposal, discussions with supervisor and delivering proposal presentation (all before the placement) and 1 week at the end of placement for finishing writing up.


Component Weighting
The students will be assessed by submission of a 10,000- 15,000 word written dissertation which reports the analytical research undertaken. 100%