- Project reports must contain no more than 8,000 words, as measured by the standard word count available on Microsoft Word. This includes ALL the text starting from Chapter 1 excluding Reference list located at the end of the report and Appendices (if any).
- Any reports that exceed the word limit will be penalized under standard marking criteria as specified in the Individual Project Marking Grid (i.e. clarity, conciseness, meeting requirements identified in the Guidelines).
- Reports must either be 1.5 line or double spaced, with a 3.5cm left-hand margin (to allow for binding) and 2.5cm top, bottom and right margins.
- The recommended fonts are: Arial and Times Roman. Text should be in 12 point. Section headings should be in 12 point, chapter headings should be in either 14 or 16 point.
- Insert a ‘footer’ containing your student number and a page number in 10 point Arial (n.b. in Word, click ‘View’ to access header/footer).
- Chapters, sections and sub-sections should be numbered using standard report formats (e.g. ‘Chapter 1: Introduction’; ‘1.1 The Research Problem’).
- The title page should include: project title, student name, student number, student degree course title, department, supervisor name and date submitted. All title page text should be centered and presented in 18 point for title and either 14 or 16 points for the rest
. · The Abstract should be no more than 250 words, summarizing the whole Project and highlighting your key findings
- It is essential to provide references for ALL the external source material that you use in your Project, using the Harvard format (e.g. books, articles, reports, newspapers, web pages). This includes citing sources in the text and providing full references in the References list at the end of the main report (i.e. before the Appendices).
- Cover sheet (n.b. obtained from Blackboard Learn and all relevant fields completed)
- Title page
- Abstract (n.b. equivalent term in business reports: ‘Executive Summary’)
- Contents page
- Introduction (n.b. this chapter is likely to include: background, problem definition, research aims, objectives, or questions and a chapter summary)
- Literature review (n.b. you may insert a more meaningful title, based on the research topic)
- Research methods
- Results [or ‘Findings’] (n.b. your analysis may be located here or in a separate chapter)
- Discussion (n.b. where you interpret findings, in relation to your question(s) and literature review)
- Conclusions and recommendations
- Appendices There is no fixed allocation of words for particular sections, it is a matter of judgement, within the overall word limit. When initially allocating a word length to your chapters (and also when editing chapters at a later stage), you should take into account both the weightings given in the Individual Project Marking Grid and the kind of research you have undertaken (e.g. some research questions may justify slightly longer literature reviews; largely quantitative research studies may require fewer words in the Results chapter, as findings can be summarized using graphs). Appendices should only be used for very relevant material that cannot be inserted in the main text without disturbing the logical flow (e.g. sample extracts from data collection, detailed analysis) that are cross-referenced in the main report). If you use Appendices incorrectly (e.g. if they contain parts of your main argument that you could not ‘fit’ into the main Report, or large amounts of raw evidence, such as printouts), you risk losing marks – see the Marking Grid. Other sources of advice We strongly recommend that you read several research methods textbooks (see Study Guide for details), focusing on relevant chapters, and use these sources to support your arguments in the Report. You can also learn a lot about research – including theory, concepts, evidence, methods, and presentation – by reading examples of published academic research (e.g. journal articles, dissertations, theses and reports). Just one warning: remember that other researchers may follow different sets of guidelines (e.g. for report structure and referencing), to those specified for this
Core reading list
This module is in part based around notions and/or material that can be found in the core text(s) listed below. It is therefore likely that you will use, or refer to, in your lecture/seminar sessions the notions and/or material in the books listed here. You will likely be directed to study aspects of these texts in your out-of-classroom time, that is, in your private study. – Bryman, A. and Bell, E. (2011) Business Research Methods (3 rd edition). Oxford: Oxford University Press. – Saunders, M., Lewis, P. and Thornhill, A. (2012) Research Methods for Business Students (6 th edition). Harlow: FT Prentice Hall. – Go to Library Supplementary reading – Fineman, S., Sims, D. and Gabriel, Y. (2010), 4th edition, Organizing and organizations. Sage, London. – Grey, C. (2013) 3 rd edition, A very short, fairly interesting and reasonably cheap book about studying organizations. Sage, London. – Pugh, D. (ed) (2008), 5 th edition, Organization theory: selected classic readings. Penguin, London. – Pears, R. and Shields, G. (2013), 9th edition, Cite them right: the essential guide to referencing and plagiarism. Newcastle upon Tyne: Pear Tree Books. Version1.5 Page 3 of 12 B r u n e l B u s i n e s s S c h o o l Journals: – Academy of Management Review – British Journal of Management – Gender, Work and Organization – Harvard Business Review – Human Relations – Journal of Business Ethics – Journal of Management Studies – Long Range Planning – Organization – Organization Studies – Sloan Management Review – The Sociological Review – Work, Employment and Society
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