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A Guide to Modules

If you’ve just joined us here in Lincoln, you may want to know what a ‘module’ is when studying. You’ll…

If you’ve just joined us here in Lincoln, you may want to know what a ‘module’ is when studying. You’ll hear the word ‘module’ quite frequently so I wanted to tell you what a module is, what makes up a module and then what credits are that make up modules.

What is a module?

So a module is simply a topic or a subject specific to your degree. Think of it like in high school where you studied mathematics, or science, or geography. It’s very dependent on your degree but sometimes courses may overlap modules so it won’t always just be your class. A common example might be that if you study Business, Business and Finance or Business and Marketing, you may all start with the same business-related modules so expect to share classes. Modules typically last a semester but depending on how many credits they are (I’ll explain what they are later), they may last two semesters. These can be classed as ‘single’ or ‘double’ modules.

What makes up a module?

A module is made up of a set amount of learning objectives and outcomes that should appear in your module handbook. Learning outcomes can range from as little as two or three, to sometimes up to 20 if it’s a double module and they’re just there to help optimise your learning and understanding of the subject. The module handbook will also include the syllabus (what the module contains) and any recommended reading to support your learning. It’s in this module handbook that you’ll find the assessments that make up the module. Assessments within a module can include:

  • Coursework (essays, reports, etc.)
  • Exams
  • Laboratory assessments
  • Fieldwork
  • Presentations
  • Group work
  • Formative or summative assessments
The module handbook can usually be found on the module homepage on Blackboard on the left.

What is a credit?

A module is made up of credits. Generally speaking, an undergraduate course consists of 120 credits a year and so 360 credits in a three year course. A postgraduate masters degree usually consists of 180 credits for the whole year. Modules can either be 15, 30 or 60 credits. A ‘single’ module will be 15 credits, a ‘double’ module will be 30 credits and then typically a dissertation or a thesis will be 60 credits.

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