Free Online Course on Research Methods: An Engineering Approach

Wits University is offering free online course on Research Methods: An Engineering Approach. The course is aimed at postgraduate engineering research at the masters and doctoral level. However, the content is accessible without any previous learning.

In this six-week course, applicants will learn how to successfully design your research and understand the underlying principles of postgraduate research from an engineering perspective. This course will start on July 5, 2017.

Course At A Glance 

Length: 6 weeks
Effort: 2-3 hours pw
Subject: Engineering
Institution: Wits University and edx
Languages: English
Price: Free
Certificate Available: Yes, Add a Verified Certificate for $49
Session: Course Starts on July 5, 2017


Providers’ Details

The University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, also known as Wits University is a leading, internationally-ranked, research-intensive University located in Johannesburg, South Africa, the economic heartland of Africa.

About This Course

A PhD or master’s level research project is an enormous undertaking, and you might find yourself a bit uncertain about the process or how to achieve the desired outcome. In this research course, you will learn the underlying principles that are needed to conduct research from an engineering perspective.

Why Take This Course?

This course is designed for engineering students conducting postgraduate research work on engineering projects. The objective of the course is to translate current research methods, which are mostly from a social science perspective, into something more relatable and understandable to engineers.

Learning Outcomes

What constitutes good research:

  • An understanding of when research is contributing to shared knowledge
  • Design of the research process
  • Dealing with uncertainty in research planning
  • Tools required for creative research


Ivan Hofsajer

Ivan Hofsajer is an Associate Professor in the School of Electrical and Information Engineering at the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa. He obtained his Doctorate from the University of Johannesburg in1998.


The course is aimed at postgraduate engineering research at the master’s and doctoral level. However, the content is accessible without any previous learning.

How To Join This Course

  • Go to the course website link
  • Create an edX account to SignUp
  • Choose “Register Now” to get started.
  • EdX offers honor code certificates of achievement, verified certificates of achievement, and XSeries certificates of achievement. Currently, verified certificates are only available in some courses.
  • Once applicant sign up for a course and activate their account, click on the Log In button on the homepage and type in their email address and edX password. This will take them to the dashboard, with access to each of their active courses. (Before a course begins, it will be listed on their dashboard but will not yet have a “view course” option.)

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