Introduction to Research

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This course aims to qualify the student for developing a research plan, and oral and written presentation (in the form of report) of a scientific work.

Therefore, at the end of this course the student should be able to:

1. Formulate a scientific hypothesis and know how delineate a consistent strategy to prove the hypothesis;

2. Identify and apply the most appropriate experimental approaches to test a specific hypothesis;

3. Be able to interpret, present and discuss in written and oral form, in a research context, the results obtained from a research project;

4 Translate the developed work and any results and conclusions obtained in the research project, into the form of a report.


1. Research methodology: strategy, planning and analysis

1.1. Methodologies of qualitative and quantitative research

1.2. How to make a research question: theme selection, objectives definition and hypotheses formulation of the study.

1.2. How to select relevant information in the literature review: using filters and keywords; impact factor; browse in major scientific databases (ISI Web of Knowledge, Socpus, PubMed).

1.3. How to develop the experimental design: define the type of study and sample selection; select/describe/organize the data type/variables; define the strategy of data analysis (descriptive and inferential).

1.4. How to present and discuss results: elaboration of tables, graphs and figures; integration of results in the current literature.

2. How to make a scientific report

3. How to structure and present an oral presentation or a poster

4. Critical analysis of a research article

Teaching Methodologies

The course will run in seminar style, with expository sessions in combination with periods of reading, analysis and discussion of documents proposed by the teacher, and visualization/exploration of websites and other online resources.


Laake, P., H.B. Benestad, B. R. Olsen (Eds.). 2007. Research methodology in the medical and biological Sciences. Elsevier, UK, 483 pp.

Silva, E.E. (Ed.). 2008. Investigação Passo a Passo – Perguntas e Respostas Essenciais para a Investigação Clínica. APMCG, Lisboa, 155 pp.

Trochim, W.M. The Research Methods Knowledge Base, 2ª Ed., Internet WWW page at URL:

<> (version current as of August 02, 2000).

Walker, C.H., R.M. Sibly, S.P. Hopkin, D.B. Peakall. 2012. Introduction to Research and Research Methods. 4ª Ed., University of Bradford, School of Management pp.



ECTS Credits



  • Seminário - 30 hours

Evaluation Methodology

  • Poster (PDF): 50%
  • Project: 50%