Business Research Case Study, 2014-15 SEM2 (Group D)

Business Research Case Study, 2014-15 SEM2 (Group D)

Assignment Structure
1.    Abstract/Executive Summary. A synopsis of the issue or problem that you have identified your chosen organisation needs to address, including a brief summary of the content of your assignment. 200 – 250 words

2.    Introduction. A short background to the organisation you have chosen to study and its environment. 250 – 300 words

3.    Literature Review.  A critical examination of the topic you have chosen to address, based on your research of authoritative sources. 1,300 – 1,500 words

4.    Critical Evaluation. Of secondary data in relation to the issue or problem that you have identified within your chosen organisation. 1,400 – 1,600 words

5.    Recommendations. How your chosen organisation could improve its operational performance based on your research. 450 – 650 words

6.    Reflective Journal. To reflect upon your professional, academic and employability skills. 1,000 words

7.    References. Using Harvard Referencing system, a list of your academic sources in alphabetical order

8.    Appendices. For any additional information eg annual accounts, diagrams/charts/tables/graphs or any visual images

3BM130: Business Research Case Study

Module Learning Outcomes
1.    Apply case study methods to interpret a business/organisation
2.    Research and evaluate the performance of an organisation in its business environment
3.    Make recommendations about operational performance based on research and evaluation of data
4.    Produce a reflective journal which reflects upon professional, academic and employability skills

Business Research Case Study task (module learning outcomes 1, 2 and 3):
Using secondary sources produce a Business Research Case Study on a topic relevant to your degree specialism.
In order to do this you must select:
a)    An organisation to study. The choice of organisation must be approved by your tutor.
b)    A topic to study which is relevant to your degree specialism. The choice of topic must be approved by your tutor.

Your assignment should include:
1.    A summary of the topic to be covered. The topic should focus on an issue or problem that you have identified the organisation needs to address.
2.    A literature review which critically examines the topic you have chosen to address.
3.    A short introduction to the background of the organisation you have chosen to study and its environment.
4.    An critical evaluation of secondary data in relation to the issue or problem that you have identified within the case study organisation
5.    Recommendations for improvements in the case study organisation based on your literature review and your secondary data

Reflective Journal tasks (module learning outcomes 4):
Read a minimum of 5 journal articles and 5 text books which are relevant to the literature review for your Business Research Case Study topic. Summarise them into key themes and outline the skills you have gained in completing this task.**
Identify a minimum of 6 secondary data sources about your chosen organisation which are relevant to your Business Research Case Study topic. Identify the strengths and weaknesses of the secondary data sources and outline the skills that you have gained in completing the task.****
Using literature sources, critically evaluate ONE research skill that you need to improve. Explain how you will develop this skill.

**It is expected that these articles, text books and secondary data sources are utilised in your Business Research Case Study.

****You should include the titles in your list of references, highlighting the ones you have utilised in your reflective journal.

3BM130: Business Research Case Study Marking Criteria
Criteria    NSA
(0-19)    F
(20-39)    D
(40-49)    C
(50-59)    B
(60-69)    A
(70-79)    A
(80-100)
Introduction to the study and identification of an organisation problem/issue      No introduction or problem identified. No evidence of research or reading.    Inadequate introduction problem/issue identification. Very little, inadequate research and reading.    Some evidence of an introduction and identification of a problem/issue Some evidence of appropriate research and reading, but lacks academic argument.

Little evidence of preparation and heavy reliance on few sources.    Good introduction and identification of problem/issue. Good evidence of appropriate research and reading giving a well-balanced overview.

Shows a good knowledge and understanding of the subject. Evidence of some research beyond core material.
Very good, introduction and identification of problem/issue. Very good evidence of appropriate research and reading giving a well-balanced overview.

Shows very good awareness and an ability to discuss key points in a critical way.
Excellent, introduction and identification of problem/issue. Excellent evidence of appropriate research and reading giving an insightful and well-balanced overview.

Shows an excellent awareness of the subject and an ability to discuss key points in a critical and insightful way.    Outstanding, introduction and identification of problem/issue. Outstanding evidence of appropriate research and reading giving an insightful and well-balanced overview.

Shows an outstanding awareness of the subject and an ability to discuss key points in a critical and insightful way.
Literature review
No relevant literature.

Poor scholarship

Wholly descriptive literature, failing to mention key points.
Innacurate referencing

Engages with key issues but in a descriptive way.
Limited referencing

Predominantly descriptive but some evidence of analytical thought.

Some key points and arguments considered but not fully developed.

Generally accurate referencing    Predominantly analytical with good links to research publications and development of a coherent academic discussion.

Evidence of an appreciation of conflicting points of view.

Good, accurate referencing
Analytical and comparative with substantive links to research publications and development of an excellent academic discussion.

Critical appreciation of conflicting points of view and how they relate to each other.
Excellent referencing    Outstanding analytical and comparative work with substantive links to research publications and excellent academic discussion of these.

Outstanding critical appreciation of conflicting points of view and how they relate to each other.
Excellent referencing
Evaluation of company data
Wholly descriptive with many key omissions. Not a serious attempt.    Wholly descriptive and incomplete. Contains substantial errors and arguments poorly constructed and incomplete.    Complete but wholly descriptive with limited extracts from the secondary data. Contains errors, mainly key points missed and arguments poorly constructed.    Predominantly descriptive but some evidence of analytical thought. Some key points and arguments were not always fully developed and evaluated.    Predominantly analytical with good evaluation of secondary data and development of a coherent academic discussion. Logical and convincing arguments and points were included.    Analytical and comparative report with substantive evaluation of secondary data and development of a coherent academic discussion. Well-argued and perceptive piece of work, showing an ability to analyse and evaluate a topic within the Specialist subject.
Critical and comparative evaluation with substantive evaluation of secondary data and development of a coherent academic discussion. Outstanding report in all aspect that is thoroughly original and insightful and provides appropriate arguments in relation to the specialist subject.

Recommendations.
No recommendations were provided.
Very brief or irrelevant recommendations.
Adequate but somewhat confused and limited recommendations.    Good recommendations with a number of points omitted.    Very good recommendations covering most of the key points.    Excellent and concise recommendations covering all of the key points.     Outstanding and concise recommendations covering all of the key points.
Reflective journal    No reflection on academic sources. No relevant skills identified.    Some reflection on academic sources. Some skill levels identified but no justification or development needs provided.    Some reflection on academic source. Some skill levels identified but with limited justification.
Little or no attempt to reflect on further development needs.    A largely descriptive account of academic sources and personal development with most areas identified.
Reasonable justification for commentary on skills development    Good evaluative commentary on academic sources and skills development with most key areas identified and analysed.
Development needs partially justified.
Good justification for commentary on skills development
Very good evaluative account of academic sources and personal development needs with a comprehensive analysis of all areas.
Development needs mainly justified
Very good justification for commentary on skills development.
Excellent evaluative commentary on academic sources and personal development in relevant skills areas.
Development needs fully justified

Structure and referencing    Failure to meet the key requirements of the assignment brief.    or sequence.  Unstructured report with no definitive sections.

Absence of any in-text or bibliographic referencing

Failure to include the sources from within the reflective summary    Adequately structured report, but work lacks creativity in presentation and seems semi structured.

Very low frequency of referencing. No attempt to use the Harvard style

Very low frequency and accuracy of use of the sources from within the reflective summary    Good presented and structured report that follows some sequence.  Would benefit from more definite links to sections. Over reliance on a restricted range of sources.

Low frequency of referencing.
Limited/inaccurate use of the Harvard style.

Low frequency and accuracy of use of the sources from within the reflective summary    Very good & fluent communication, following a logical sequence of thought.  Well-indexed and linked producing a very good quality report. Low frequency of referencing. Appropriate reading – but from a narrow range of sources.
Most work referenced.
Generally accurate use of the Harvard style.

Generally good frequency and accurate use of the sources from within the reflective summary    Excellent and fluent communication, following a logical sequence of thought, well indexed and linking sections to produce a quality report. Most work referenced. Appropriate reading from a very good range of sources.

Very few references omitted. Accurate use of the Harvard style.
Frequent and accurate use of the sources from within the reflective summary

Outstanding and fluent communication, following a logical sequence of thoughts, well indexed & linking sections to produce a quality report written in a professional & academic manner.

Extensive research using a range of appropriate and up to date sources.
Completely correct in-text and bibliographic referencing.

Excellent  use of the sources from within the reflective summary

NOTE: THE TOPIC MUST RELATE TO THE DEGREE AWARD THAT IS BEING UNDERTAKEN