Our Research and Fieldwork Skills course will arm you with the skills and knowledge needed to feel confident in planning and conducting your undergraduate research project.

The course will enable you to develop a greater understanding of the research process, undertake pilot studies at a range of our fieldwork locations, and network with other students in your shoes from across the UK.

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The 4-day course is aimed at undergraduate students looking to gain additional support with their research project or dissertation, via workshops and fieldwork sessions.

Discussions will be had around the planning stage of research, including deciding on a question, developing a sampling strategy and risk assessments, as well as building on your understanding of GIS and statistics.

Alongside this you will also have the opportunity to select certain sites, based on your subject and interests, to conduct fieldwork while exploring new locations and subject knowledge. This includes zonation on the rocky shore, coastal fieldwork and investigating water quality and freshwater ecology in Slapton Ley.

The course will be supported with additional input from university lecturers and our external partners, including Dartmoor Zoo.

Outside of the planned day you will have the chance to explore the local area and network with undergraduates from universities across the UK. It will be a great opportunity to share your experiences and develop connections that may aid your future career path.

Example Timetable

Example timetable

Day 1

Arrive 12:00

Welcome talk and introductory walk around the National Nature Reserve with the Ranger.

Discussions around population monitoring.


Discuss the route to enquiry, literature reviews and getting started with project planning.

Set up mammal traps.

Day 2


Open mammal traps.

Conduct data collection at chosen fieldwork location:

-          Rocky shore zonation at Prawle

-          Coastal study along Slapton Sands


Data analysis and presentation workshop, including use of GIS – specifically ArcGIS.

Set up moth trap.

Day 3


Open moth trap.

Fieldwork study at Slapton Ley to look at hydrology, freshwater invertebrates, and water quality.


Conduct data collection at chosen fieldwork location:

-          Carbon and water fieldwork in Slapton Woods and surrounding fields

-          Succession on Slapton Sands shingle ridge


Statistics workshop

Camp fire

Day 4


Discuss research writing skills.

Consideration of post-research opportunities – posters, conferences, articles, careers etc.

Zoom meetings with external partners such as Dartmoor Zoo.


Depart 3:30pm

This is an example timetable so this itinerary may change due to weather, safety, and external factors.

Before You Attend

This residential welcomes anyone over 18 years old. All participants will be expected to follow the behaviour and conduct rules which will be in place to safeguard young people.

Kit list:

  • A good pair of walking boots
  • Wellingtons
  • Waterproof jacket & trousers
  • Hat and gloves for warm and cold weather
  • Suitable clothing for the time of year
  • Wash kit
  • Towel
  • Small day rucksack
  • Water bottle and lunch box/ Tupperware
  • Notebook and stationery
  • Laptop or tablet
  • Personal medication

Opportunities to attend this course

This course is not currently available to book. Dates will follow soon.

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