Research Project – Unit Abstract

| January 7, 2016

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Research Project – Unit Abstract

This unit is designed to enable learners to become confident using research techniques and methods. It addresses the elements that make up formal research including the proposal, a variety of research methodologies, action planning, carrying out the research itself and presenting the findings. To complete the unit satisfactorily, learners must also understand the theory that underpins formal research.

The actual research depends on the learner, the context of their area of learning, their focus of interest and the anticipated outcomes. The unit draws together a range of other areas from within the programme to form a holistic piece of work that will make a positive contribution to the learner’s area of interest.

Learners should seek approval from their tutors before starting their research project and must comply with the DG Code of Research Conduct.

 

Research Proposal

It is useful that you choose a topic you like and what you already have some academic knowledge. Your own past projects can be a good starting point to look for topics that capture your interest and that you can develop further. Also, you can search for topics that interest you through an initial literature search.

A research proposal serves a great deal of purposes. The proposal is a coherent statement of research intent, which entails that you will be able to express exactly what you are going to research. The proposal will also serve to convince your audience that your research is worthwhile and achievable within the timeframe and available resources. In a real life context, a proposal is the evidence of a contractual obligation by two parties: the researcher and the client.

Content of a Research Proposal:

  • Title
  • Background/Problem Statement/Literature Overview
  • Research Question and Objectives
  • Methodology (research design and data collection)
  • Timescale
  • Resources
  • Ethical statement
  • References
  • Bibliography

You can find some good examples of the content of a research proposal; the style of writing and its purpose.

 

 

DGHE SCHEME OF WORK

 

Module: Unit 8:  Research Project: Part One
 

Module Tutor: Andreia Areal

 

Level: 5

Teaching Weeks: 10 Hours per Session/week: 3 hours per week

 

 

Learning Outcomes (LO)  
   

1.       Understand how to formulate a research specification

 

   

2.       Be able to implement the research project within agreed procedures and to specification

 

   

3.       Be able to evaluate the research outcomes

 

   

4.       Be able to present the research outcomes.

 

 

Aim

 

To develop learners’ skills of independent enquiry and critical analysis by undertaking a sustained research investigation of direct relevance to their Higher Education programme and professional development.

 

Unit abstract

 

This unit is designed to enable learners to become confident using research techniques and methods. It addresses the elements that make up formal research including the proposal, a variety of research methodologies, action planning, carrying out the research itself and presenting the findings. To complete the unit satisfactorily, learners must also understand the theory that underpins formal research. The actual research depends on the learner, the context of their area of learning, their focus of interest and the anticipated outcomes. The unit draws together a range of other areas from within the programme to form a holistic piece of work that will make a positive contribution to the learner’s area of interest. Learners should seek approval from their tutors before starting their research project.

 

The first terms deals with the preparation phase and the development of a research proposal

 

Policy and Regulations

 

This Scheme of Work must be read in conjunction with the Student Handbook and Regulations copies of which are available from College Management and are published for your convenience on the College VLE Moodle. All attendance, academic misconduct and College policy and regulations will be strictly enforced.

 

 

 

Week Learning Outcome(s) Covered Topics/ Activities Reference/ Resources/ Methods
1

 

 

LO1

Overview of course and assessments

·         Aims of objectives

·         Scheme of Work

·         Learning outcomes

·         Moodle and resources

·         Research problems and how they relate to debates in research methods

·         Nature of business and management research

·         Research diary and critical friend

·         Case Study

·         Scheme of Work

·         Assessment Guide

·         BPP Business Essentials Research Project

·         Saunders et al. Research Methods for Business Students

·         Greener, S. Business Research Methods

·         Lecture slides

·         Case Study

·         Lecturer hand outs

·         Video / You Tube clips

 

2

 

 

LO1

Formulating and clarifying a research topic

·         Characteristics of a good research topic

·         Turning research ideas into research projects

·         Research questions, aims and objectives

·         Scope of research and limitations

·         Characteristics of a good researcher

·         Benefits and self-development

·         Case Study

 

·         Scheme of Work

·         Assessment Guide

·         BPP Business Essentials Research Project

·         Saunders et al. Research Methods for Business Students

·         Greener, S. Business Research Methods

·         Lecture slides

·         Case Study

·         Lecturer hand outs

·         Video / You Tube clips

 

3

 

LO1 Critically reviewing the literature

·         Definition of a literature review

·         Critical thinking and reading

·         Secondary and primary sources

·         Conducting a literature search

·         Writing a literature review

·         Confirmation of research question objectives and questions

·         Plagiarism and Harvard referencing

·         Case Study

·         Scheme of Work

·         Assessment Guide

·         BPP Business Essentials Research Project

·         Saunders et al. Research Methods for Business Students

·         Greener, S. Business Research Methods

·         Lecture slides

·         Case Study

·         Lecturer hand outs

·         Video / You Tube clips

 

 

 

4

 

LO1 Critically reviewing the literature (seminar and lab)

·         Annotated bibliographies, reference lists and bibliographies

·         Research articles

·         Online research

·         Open access journals

·         Practical Harvard referencing

·         Advanced Google and academic search engine

·         Scheme of Work

·         Assessment Guide

·         BPP Business Essentials Research Project

·         Saunders et al. Research Methods for Business Students

·         Greener, S. Business Research Methods

·         Lecture slides

·         Lecturer hand outs

·         Video / You Tube clips

5

 

LO1 Formulating the research design – data collection

·         Research strategy

·         Research philosophy

·         Data collection methods- introduction

·         Introduction to population definition and sampling

·         Credibility of research

·         Pre Test and Pilot studies

·         Case Study

Task 1 and 2: Formative Feedback

·         Scheme of Work

·         Assessment Guide

·         BPP Business Essentials Research Project

·         Saunders et al. Research Methods for Business Students

·         Greener, S. Business Research Methods

·         Lecture slides

·         Case Study

·         Lecturer hand outs

·         Video / You Tube clips

6

 

LO2 Negotiating Access and Ethics in research

·         Access issues in data collection

·         Research ethics

·         Ethics at each stage of the research process

·         Video: Mischief

 

 

·         Scheme of Work

·         Assessment Guide

·         BPP Business Essentials Research Project

·         Saunders et al. Research Methods for Business Students

·         Greener, S. Business Research Methods

·         Lecture slides

·         Lecturer hand outs

·         Video / You Tube clips

7

 

LO2 Formulating the research design – data analysis

·         Analysing and presenting quantitative data

·         Analysing and presenting qualitative data

·         Managing total error

·         Discussing findings in relation to analysis

·         Structuring a research proposal – introduction

·         Case Study

·         Scheme of Work

·         Assessment Guide

·         BPP Business Essentials Research Project

·         Saunders et al. Research Methods for Business Students

·         Greener, S. Business Research Methods

·         Lecture slides

·         Case Study

·         Lecturer hand outs

·         Video / You Tube clips

 

 

 

8

 

LO2 Structuring a research proposal

·         Writing a research proposal

·         Estimating time and resources

·         Contracting with external agencies – research specifications

·         Review of example proposals

·         Case Study

 

·         Scheme of Work

·         Assessment Guide

·         BPP Business Essentials Research Project

·         Saunders et al. Research Methods for Business Students

·         Greener, S. Business Research Methods

·         Lecture slides

·         Case Study

t

9

 

LO2 Reflection and personal development

·         Overview of reflection

·         Reflection in practice

·         Transferable skills

·         Critical friend input

·         Reflective essay

·         Case Study

 

 

·         Scheme of Work

·         Assessment Guide

·         BPP Business Essentials Research Project

·         Saunders et al. Research Methods for Business Students

·         Greener, S. Business Research Methods

·         Lecture slides

·         Case Study

 

10

 

LO1,

LO2,

Seminar and Revision

·         Review of course

·         Guest speaker / documentary

·         LO3 and LO4 discussion and next stages

·         Group work discussion

·         Question and answer

 

 

·         Scheme of Work

·         Assessment Guide

·         BPP Business Essentials Research Project

·         Saunders et al. Research Methods for Business Students

·         Greener, S. Business Research Methods

·         Lecture slides

·         Case Study

 

11 LO1 and LO2 Submission of Task 3 and Task 4 NA

 


 

INDICATIVE RESOURCE MATERIALS

 

Core Text Books

 

·         Business Essentials: (available in the library)

·         BTEC Business Study Guide: Level 4 and 5  (available in the library)

·         Greener, S. Business Research Methods, Bookboon. (available in online library)

·         Saunders, M., Lewis, P. and Thornhill, A. (2009) Research Methods for Business Students, Fifth Edition. FT Prentice Hall (available in library)

 

Key Books

 

·         Gill, John and Johnson, Phil (2002), Research Methods for Managers, FT Publishing

·         Jankowicz, A (2005), Business Research Projects, Chapman and Hall.

·         Bryman, A (1998), Quantity and Quality in Social Research, Routledge, London

·         Bryman, A and Bell, E (2008), Business Research Methods, Oxford University Press

·         Hague, P (1993), Questionnaire Design, Kogan Page.

·         Yin, Robert (2003), Case Study Research: Design and Methods, Sage Publications, Newbury Park.

 

Journals/ Magazines

 

·         Academy of Management;

·         Sloan Management Review;

·         Harvard Business Review;

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HNC/D Assignment

 

Assignment Front Sheet

 

Qualification Unit number and title
Pearson BTEC Level 5 HND Diploma Business Unit 8:  Research Project: Part One
Student name Assessor name
  Andreia Areal
Date issued Completion date Submitted on
Week 1 Formative Submission: 26/10/2015

Summative Submission: 14/12/2015

 
   
Assignment title Unit 8:  Research Project: Part One

 

Learning Outcome  

Learning Outcome

Assessment Criteria In this assessment you will have the opportunity to present evidence that shows you are able to: Task no.  

Evidence

(Page no)

LO1 Understand how to formulate a research

specification

1.1 Formulate and record possible research project

outline specifications

 

1  
1.2 Identify the factors that contribute to the

process of research project selection

 

1  
1.3 Undertake a critical review of key references

 

2  
    1.4 Produce a research project specification

 

4  
    1.5 Provide an appropriate plan and procedures for

the agreed research specification

 

4  
LO2  

Be able to implement the research project within agreed procedures and to specification.

 

2.1 Match resources efficiently to the research

question or hypothesis

 

2  
2.2 Undertake the proposed research investigation

in accordance with the agreed specification

and procedures

 

4  
2.3 Record and collate relevant data where

appropriate

 

4  
LO3 – TERM TWO  

Be able to evaluate the

research outcomes

3.1 Use appropriate research evaluation

techniques

 

   
3.2 Interpret and analyse the results in terms of

the original research specification

 

   
3.3 Make recommendations and justify areas for

further consideration

 

   
LO4 – TERM TWO Be able to present the research outcomes 4.1 Use an agreed format and appropriate media to present the outcomes of the research to an audience.

 

   

 

 

In addition to the above PASS criteria, this assignment gives you the opportunity to submit evidence in order to achieve the following MERIT and DISTINCTION grades
Merit descriptors Indicative characteristics Contextualised Indicative characteristics
M1 Identify and apply

strategies to find

appropriate solutions

An effective approach to study and research has been applied

Complex problems with more than one variable have been explored

Answers reflect that effective judgments have been made about the topic choice, scope of the work and resources. The answers show that an effective approach to study and research has been applied within the scenario e.g. comparing features, theories and models comparison etc.
M2 Select/design and apply

appropriate

methods/techniques

Relevant theories and techniques have been applied. A range of sources of information has been used An accurate standard method has been used in defining information sources is well justified and summarized. Evidence of a wide range of sources from journals and recognised secondary sources to support statements and justify conclusions.

 

M3 Present and

communicate

appropriate findings

The appropriate structure and approach has been used. A range of methods of presentation have been used and technical language has been accurately used An accurate standard for presenting information has been used in terms of diagrams, charts, tables that are clearly referenced and relevant with appropriate discussion and interpretation.

 

 

 

Distinction descriptors

Indicative characteristics Contextualised Indicative characteristics
 

D1

Use critical reflection to

evaluate own work and

justify valid conclusions

Conclusions have been arrived at through synthesis of ideas

and have been justified

Self-criticism of approach has taken place

 

Proper evaluation and justification shown in all discussion and relevant conclusions have been arrived at thorough synthesis of ideas following each section of writing. Awareness of limitations of theoretical perspectives clearly stated and evidence of understanding of their impact on the research is clearly stated. Student was able to critically reflect on his or her own learning and address areas for personal improvement.
 

D2

Take responsibility for

managing and organising

activities

 

Autonomy/independence has been demonstrated Tasks have been attempted with minimal assistance provided by the lecturer. Effective time management and evidence of reflection on learning journal. Excellent time management.

 

D3 Demonstrate

convergent/lateral/

creative thinking

Innovation and creative thought have been applied. Self-evaluation has taken place Ideas have been generated and proper evaluation and decisions taken based on facts gathered with research. Realistic recommendations for further research have been made.

 

 

 

SUMMARY OF GRADES

 

In order to achieve a pass in a unit
  • all learning outcomes and associated assessment criteria have been met
In order to achieve a merit in a unit
  • pass requirements achieved
  • all merit grade descriptors achieved
In order to achieve a distinction in a unit
  • pass and merit requirements achieved
  • all distinction grade descriptors achieved

 

 

 

Learner declaration
I certify that the work submitted for this assignment is my own and research sources are fully acknowledged.

 

 

Student signature:                                                               Date:

 

Assignment brief
Unit number and title Unit 8: Research Project
Qualification Pearson BTEC Level 5 HND Diploma Business
Start date Week 1 28.09.2015
Deadline/hand-in Week 11: 14.12.2015
Assessor Andreia Areal
 
Assignment title Unit 8: Research Project Part One
Purpose of this assessment

 

This unit develops learners’ skills of independent enquiry and critical analysis by undertaking a sustained research investigation of direct relevance to their Higher Education programme and professional development.

Scenario

 

Congratulations! You have been appointed as a consultant to Curiosity Consultants Ltd. The company offers research and consultancy services to SMEs and micro-businesses in London.

 

Your manager Mr T Tutor, is a hard task master and has identified that you need to hone your skills by carrying out a business research project related to a business problem in the portfolio of businesses that Curiosity Consultants Ltd consults to. For this reason Mr T Tutor seeks a structured series of tasks to be completed that culminates in a proposal for his approval.  He is also keen on your personal development and for that reason has requested a reflective essay to help with your career ambitions.

 

SUMMARY OF EVIDENCE

 

Word processed notes in font Arial 11, 1.5 spacing with cover sheet, reference list and appendices as required.

 

ALL TASKS MUST BE RELATED BACK TO THE SCENARIO

 

The assessment comprises SIX tasks to be completed during the course

 

TASK 1: 500 word essay justifying a topic. Due Week FIVE

TASK 2: Resources as a base for literature review: Due Week FIVE

TASK 3: 500 word reflective essay on learning  and contribution to career: Due Week ELEVEN

TASK 4: 2000 word research proposal: Due Week ELEVEN

 

 

TASK 1 (Formative): Essay: Due Week FIVE

 

Understand how to formulate a research specification

 

1.1 Provide a short profile of the consulting client and identify and explain the research problem.

1.2 Explain how research might benefit the client

1.3 Outline the preliminary aims, objectives and scope of the proposed research

 

NOTE: This is the task on which you will receive written formative feedback to assess the suitability, feasibility and acceptability of the topic. The revised version (where applicable) should be submitted as a summative for formal summative grading.

 

Word count: 500

TASK 2 (Formative):  Resources: Due Week FIVE

 

Understand how to formulate a research specification

 

2.1: Create an annotated bibliography where you identify key literature sources to address the problem identified in Task 1.

2.2: Explain how potential limiting factors and scarce resources might impact upon achieving the output of the Gantt chart.

 

NOTE: This is the task on which you will receive written formative feedback to assess the suitability, feasibility and acceptability of the topic. The revised version (where applicable) should be submitted as a summative for formal summative grading.

 

Word count: 500

TASK 3 (Summative): Reflective Essay: Due Week ELEVEN

 

Understand how to formulate a research specification

Be able to implement the research project within agreed procedures and to specification

 

3.1: Explain the importance of reflection in practice

3.2: Reflective on transferable skills development during the term

3.3: Comment on how these skills might contribute to your career development

 

Word count: 500

TASK 4 (Summative): Research Proposal Due Week ELEVEN

 

Understand how to formulate a research specification

Be able to implement the research project within agreed procedures and to specification

 

Draft a research proposal to address the business problem identified in Task One. You must make good use of as many of the references identified in Task 2 in your writing.

 

Word count: 2000

 

 

 

This Assignment Brief must be read in conjunction with the Student Handbook and Regulations copies of which are available from College Management and are published for your convenience on the College VLE Moodle. All attendance, academic misconduct and College policy and regulations will be strictly enforced.  

 

 

 

 


 

Achievement Summary

 

 

Qualification

Pearson BTEC Level 5 HND Diploma in Business  

Assessor name

 

Andreia Areal

 

Unit Number and title

Unit 8: Research Project  

Student name

 
 
Criteria Reference To achieve the criteria the evidence must show that the student is able to: Achieved?

(tick)

LO1 Understand how to formulate a research specification

 

 
  1.1 formulate and record possible research project outline specifications

 

 
  1.2 identify the factors that contribute to the process of research project selection

 

 
  1.3 undertake a critical review of key references

 

 
  1.4 produce a research project specification

 

 
  1.5 provide an appropriate plan and procedures for the agreed research specification

 

 
LO2 Be able to implement the research project within agreed procedures and to

Specification

 

 
  2.1 match resources efficiently to the research

question or hypothesis

 

 
  2.2 undertake the proposed research investigation in accordance with the agreed specification and procedures

 

 
  2.3 record and collate relevant data where appropriate

 

 
LO3 / LO4 TO BE EVALUATED IN THE FOLLOWING TERM

 

 
 

Higher Grade achievements (where applicable)

 

 

Grade descriptor

 

 

Achieved?

(tick)

 

Grade descriptor

 

Achieved?

(tick)

M1: Identify and apply strategies to find appropriate solutions

 

  D1: Use critical reflection to evaluate own work and justify valid conclusions  
M2: Select / design and apply appropriate methods / techniques

 

  D2: Take responsibility for managing and organising activities  
M3: Present and communicate appropriate findings

 

  D3: Demonstrate convergent/lateral/creative thinking  

 


 

Assignment Feedback

 

Formative Feedback: Assessor to Student

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Action Plan

 

Summative feedback

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Feedback: Student to Assessor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Assessor signature

 

   

Date

 
 

Student signature

 

   

Date

 

 

 

 

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