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Research Methodologies in Civil Engineering

Code 14575
Year 1
Semester S1
ECTS Credits 6
Workload OT(15H)
Scientific area Engenharia Civil
Entry requirements Not applicable.
Learning outcomes Be able to outline the purpose and distinct focus of research and to place it on a fundamental-applied research continuum according to its purpose and context.
To understand the main research paradigms and the stages that are part of a research process.
Be able to understand the importance of the literature review to a research project and to adopt a critical and ethical perspective in reading, reviewing and publishing.
Be able to turn research ideas into a research project that has clear research question(s) and objectives and draft a research proposal.
To learn how to plan, design and conduct experiments efficiently and effectively, and analyze the resulting data to obtain objective conclusions.
To integrate research design and statistical analysis issues in the planning stage of research.
To be able to use research in engineering and scientific work, including technology development, new product design and development, process development, and manufacturing process improvement.
Syllabus Introduction to Research: Science and scientific research, thinking like a researcher, the research process, theories in scientific research. Basics of Empirical Research: Research design, measurement of constructs, scale reliability and validity. Design of Experiments: Simple comparative experiments, experiments with a single factor (the analysis of variance), randomized blocks, Latin squares and related designs, factorial design (the 2 raised to k factorial design, blocking and confounding in the 2 raised to k factorial design. Data collection: Survey research, experimental research, case research, interpretive research. Data analysis: qualitative analysis, quantitative analysis, descriptive and inferential statistics supported by the statistical analysis software. Research Ethics. Scientific communication and publishing.
Main Bibliography Montgomery, Douglas C. Design and analysis of experiments. 9th edition, John Wiley & Sons, 2017. ISBN: 978-1- 119-11347-8
Bhattacherjee, Anol. "Social science research: Principles, methods, and practices." (2012). URL:
Mark, Saunders, Lewis Philip, and Thornhill Adrian. "Research methods for business students." (2009). Prentice-Hall, Financial Times: an imprint of Pearson Education. ISBN: 978-0-273-71686-0
Teaching Methodologies and Assessment Criteria The methodology put into practice will be student-centred. There will be required readings associated with each explanatory lecture. Most readings will be from the course textbooks, but students are encouraged to seek supplementary material. Homework will be assigned each week. These include a literature review component (structured as a critical review) of scientific papers published in peer-reviewed indexed journals, as well as the preparation of a doctoral thesis plan and the preparation of a conference article with presentation within the course. The communication aspect will hence be contemplated in an experiential and applied way. All assignments should be submitted electronically by emailing them to the instructor by the beginning of the class period in which the assignment is due.
Language Portuguese. Tutorial support is available in English.
Last updated on: 2022-01-08

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