End of Module Assignment This assignment is due end of unit 12. The overall word count for this assignment is 2,500 words. For a project management topic of your choice produce a research proposal which addresses the key elements required to ensure the research is considered credible. Please note that this proposal will form the basis for your Business and Management Research Report. You should therefore think carefully about the research topic you select for your proposal as this will have a further impact on your studies. You should focus your work upon addressing: Introduction This should be kept very brief and outline what is to be addressed, what the purpose of the proposed research is, and where the research is located (context). Research Questions & Objectives A clearly specified research question providing a focus for the research. The research question should be narrow and deep. One research question is preferred, but a maximum of two may be suitable if the questions are closely related. Objectives should be specified using the SMART or similar criteria. Literature Review This should be a mini literature review which seeks to identify the current state of knowledge of the literature in the area within which your research question is located. You should identify key themes, strengths and limitations of existing literature and communicate understanding of where your research fits within this wider context. Methodology This section needs to identify the key area areas that a methodology should address. This includes: research philosophy (ontology and epistemology), the research approach, the research design, the research strategy, time horizons and the data collection and analysis methods to be adopted. The work also needs to consider issues relating to reliability and validity (or their qualitative equivalents) and ethics. Reflections You should provide a brief reflection concerning how you have developed during the construction of your research proposal. Presentation The work should be professionally presented. Citation support and references should be Harvard style. The structure of the work should be logical and clear. — Hello everybody I am particularly keen to impress upon everyone that it is an explicit communication of understanding of Research Methods module that is very important in your final End of Module assignment. This includes specifying the research questions and objectives, carrying out a literature review and detailing a rigorous methodology. This is information that you should be very aware of as you are constructing your module assignments. As you construct your assignments you need to be aware of the following: – Read the assessment very carefully and address what the assessment asks for (for example, do not omit key sub-headings in the methodology and you must provide quality content (fully supported with frequent and varied citations) – Remember this is your opportunity to show how you have developed in terms of knowledge and understanding of the key module content as requested by the assignment brief (not lengthy examples). – To show this understanding you should ask yourself the following questions: – Have I (you the student) addressed the requirements of the assessment brief? – Have I (you the student) clearly structured my response with sub-headings? – Have I (you the student) detailed a clear (narrow in scope) and deep (in research potential) single research question. More than a single question is usually not necessary. – Have I (you the student) detailed 4-6 research objectives (all of which should be inherently SMART) – Have I (you the student) interpreted theory into my own words and supported it with wide and varied citations? (this helps show wide reading and that multiple perspectives have been taken) – Have I (you the student) attempted to identify limitations of the topics I am discussing (throughout the work – not just a paragraph at the end of each section)? – Have I (you the student) crafted my assignment to remove spelling and grammar errors? – Is my (you the student) work focused and concise (staying on topic and really communicating understanding)? – Have I (you the student) used the full word count (to help communicate my understanding)? – Have I (you the student) listened to the on-line Q and A recordings? – Have I (you the student) clearly shown direct quotes correctly (in quotation marks with the author surname, date and page number). Direct quotes should be used very sparingly. The above is very important and helps avoid basic errors such as a poor research questions, not carrying out a rigorous literature review or not addressing all the key sub-headings detailed in the brief for the methodology. I hope this helps you Regards Unit 11: Analysing Qualitative Data Welcome to Unit 11. In this unit Qualitative data and its analysis can be considered from two positions. A deductive perspective is concerned with theory testing, whilst inductive perspectives are more suitable for theory building. Regardless of the approach taken, data have to be prepared and analysed in a credible manner to produce meaningful information that will help answer the research questions and achieve the research objectives. In preparing data for analysis various means can be adopted (in the data collection phase). This often involves transcribing what is said during interviews and supporting this with a variety of aids including: “interim or progress summaries…. transcript summaries…. document summaries…. self memo’s…. a research note book…. [and] a reflective diary or journal” (Saunders et al, 2019:648). When the data is ready for analysis, two main approaches can be discerned depending upon the nature of the research. For constructionist type research a means of categorising and unitising data will be adopted (for example, categorisation and unitisation; open, axial and selective coding; template analysis; narrative analysis; discourse analysis). For more objectivistic type research, quantification of the qualitative data will be needed and then the analysis will follow statistical means of analysis. You should note: you would have to make a strong case for quantifying qualitative data. To ensure that the qualitative research is considered credible, qualitative data analysis has differing criteria for assessing the analysis process. For example, Charmaz and Bryant (2011, cited in Cassop Thompson, 2012) suggest that “plausibility….credibility… relevance” are an appropriate means to assess [constructionist] interpretive research. Unit 11 Reading The reading this week focusses on identifying the purpose of qualitative data analysis, exploring how qualitative data can be addressed inductively and deductively, examining differing preparation techniques for qualitative data analysis and identify methods for analysing qualitative data. Required Reading Saunders, M. Lewis, P. and Thornhill, A. (2019). Research Methods for Business Students. 8th Ed. London: Pearson. Chapter 13 Additional Reading Bell, E. Bryman, A. & Harley, B. (2022) Business Research Methods. 6th Ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Chapter 25. Unit 12: Writing Up Your Research Project Welcome to Unit 12: This unit considers how writing the research project is often seen as a mysterious craft by which it is difficult to achieve an end result which does justice to the researcher’s knowledge and understanding of the project. Despite this, a number of activities can be identified which will help provide structure and content that fulfils the research questions, objectives and assessment criteria (if applicable). Although there are always elements of individual creativity, there are a number of key issues that can be addressed. Firstly, having the correct contextual elements in place for writing to take place is the basis for getting started. This includes having a suitable working environment, time, goals, plans and equipment. Secondly, a clear structure for a research project is one of the keys to effectively communicating the contents of the research report. A solid hint here – for students – is that the assessment criteria can help provide several key sub-headings. This is in addition or instead of more formal structure. However, this decision has to be made with care. Once the overall structure is decided upon, the project’s content can be organised in particular ways. For example, in the literature review the content can be organised by subject themes or alternatively by storylines (Saunders et al., 2019). Finally, the writing style used in a research project should be clear, simple, free of spelling and grammar errors and in the correct tense. Overall, using the techniques suggested here, the writing of the research process can actually be an enjoyable experience. Unit 12 Reading The reading this week focusses on identifying techniques for starting the writing process, identifying suitable means for structuring a research project, examining means of communicating your research project content effectively, exploring styles suitable for writing the research project and examining the importance of the assessment criteria in informing research projects. You should note the overall structure of your End of Module Assignment is in the form of a research proposal. It is very important not to omit key sub-headings and provide content of a masterly standard. Required Reading Saunders, M. Lewis, P. and Thornhill, A. (2019). Research Methods for Business Students. 8th Ed. London: Pearson. Chapter 14 Additional Reading Bell, E. Bryman, A. & Harley, B. (2022) Business Research Methods. 6th Ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Chapter 7.