Science, research methods and scientific papers, with focus on computer science, 7.5 credits

Science, research methods and scientific papers, with focus on computer science, 7.5 credits

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The course aims to give students an introduction to the concepts and issues of science theory, as well as a basic knowledge of research methods in science and technology, especially computer science. Students become acquainted with the scientific language by reading and summarizing a number of scientific papers. Information retrieval and a source- critical attitude are practiced when writing the scientific article that is written and presented during the course. The students develop their analytical skills and critical thinking as they review and oppose others’ articles.

Responsible: Mälardalen University (Jan Gustafsson)

Course modules:

  1. Science theory. What is science and what is not? The scientific method for creating knowledge.
  2. Research methodology in science and technology. Research methodology for computer science.
  3. Scientific writing. Reading and summarizing scientific papers. Searching scientific papers. Writing and presentation of a scientific paper.

Overview of the video lectures (with questions)

  • Introduction
    • Course Introduction (1 video)
  • 1. Theory of Science
    • Theory of Science (7 videos)
    • Sociology of Science (1 video)
  • 2. Research methodology
    • Overview (1 video)
    • Examples (5 videos)
    • Deductive Methods and Proofs (8 videos)
    • Measurement-based Research Methods in Computer Engineering (3 videos)
    • Research Methods for Software Engineering (1 video)
    • Research methods for Interactive Systems (3 videos)
  • 3. Scientific writing
    • Paper Writing and Publication (4 videos)
    • References, Search, Databases, Use of library (2 videos)
    • Paper Reviewing (1 video)
    • How to Present a Paper (1 video)

Mandatory assignments

  • Assignment 1: Describe and analyse one case of pseudoscience.
  • Assignment 2: Describe and analyse one case study in science history.
  • Assignment 3: Review a journal paper.
  • Assignment 4: Write a scientific paper.
  • Assignment 5: Review other student’s scientific papers. Done in groups of three to six students.
  • Assignment 5: Presentation of a scientific paper at a Mini Conference.
  • Assignment 5: Opposition of scientific papers at the Mini Conference.


This course has one mandatory seminar (the Mini Conference).


Jan Gustafsson, Gordana Dodig-Crnkovic, Hans Hansson, Abhilash Thekkilakattil, Wasif Afzal, Björn Lisper, Mats Björkman, Ylva Fernaeus, Lina Andrén.

Learning outcomes: The student will, after course completion, be able to:

  1. know and use central concepts and issues in science theory
  2. know the criteria for pseudoscience
  3. be familiar with reading, summarizing and reviewing scientific papers
  4. know some important research methods in computer science
  5. write a scientific paper (based on own work or information found in scientific papers or similar), relate the paper to science theory and research methods, and present the paper
  6. oppose others’ presentations
  7. practice a critical approach to knowledge, science and research

More info:

  • Course title in Swedish: Vetenskap, forskning och vetenskapliga artiklar, med fokus på datavetenskap
  • Course code: DVA470 (at MdH), MDH-24141 (at or
  • Course syllabus at Mälardalen University
  • More information and application instructions at Mälardalen University
  • Admission requirements: 120 credits of which at least 60 credits in technology or informatics, including at least 30 credits in programming or software development.Applicants with at least 12 month (full-time) documented work-experience from software development have priority in the selection process.