quantitative methodology Research method
Individual Assignment (25%) The deadline for the individual assignment is 13.00 ,18th January 2016.
• Your individual assignment is to design a dissertation proposal including a clear research question.
• You should develop a full research proposal and a pilot study. You should include a review of literature, explain your research design, identify and justify your methods and pre-test one of your methods.
• The assignment should demonstrate scholarship, academic rigour, creativity & methodological clarity.
• *******One or more qualitative methods should be applied, although using a mainly quantitative methodology is also acceptable (but you still need to justify it)
The Assignment Structure:
Considering the following steps will offer some guidance to your structure for assignment:
▪ The formulation of suitable research question(s)
▪ The selection of an area of literature to inform your study
▪ The identification of a population and a sample for the study
▪ The choice and justification of a set of methods appropriate to the aim of the study
▪ The development of a qualitative research instrument (e.g. interview schedule, observation points, focus group, experiment) appropriate to the research, and a method of analysis
▪ The piloting of the instrument/method (e.g. 10 questionnaires, 2 interviews, 3 hours observation, a focus groups)
▪ make it clear what each section is about and how it links to the rest of the assignment
▪ Have headings for each section
▪ Make it clear what is in each section and why
▪ Have a clear question not just a topic area
▪ Make sure you engage with academic literature – i.e. journal articles
▪ Use evidence and reference those academics with relevant ideas
▪ Use proper citation and a full & consistent bibliography
▪ You must pilot the study (do it properly) and explain the outcomes
▪ Use your concepts carefully and define them
▪ Introduce a framework or a perspective to help support your answer to the research question you choose, if possible
▪ Take care over generalisations. Try to support your arguments with references, data or an example or illustration. Qualify your statements
▪ Avoid generalising from personal experience without additional support
▪ Be critical, but make sure that your criticism is well-informed and coherent – linked to evidence or references
▪ Refer to theories and debates and use quotes and references where it helps to support your argument
▪ Show that you are familiar with the debate and key sources in the literature
▪ Avoid lists and long sentences (even if I don’t!)
• Can you analyse the topic from different perspectives ? For example your sampling method and reliability of data/findings.
• Can you justify the research methods you propose to use for investigating a topic? For example a survey, a focus group discussion or a combination of the two.
• Can you think across topics and establish a link? For example a link between your formulation of your research question and the methods of data collection and analysis.
• Are you clear about your unit of analysis, reliability issues, sampling methods, ethical issues, etc.
• You have been asked to test the method you use by piloting one of the methods
• Unless this is impossible to your method (in which case justify why this is not possible, you must do so
• The point: detect problems & improve the questions you ask
• You will learn from this and you must include an account of what you found and what you have learnt
• If you don’t do this properly and think about the date you have obtained, it will be obvious to the marker, so get this right
Things to Consider
• Is your research design clear and consistent?
• Does your project sound like an academic project that you might encounter in the literature?
• Are all the elements coherent together?
• Do you have a framework, or something to test?
• What theories and perspectives are you using?
• Why are you using this method/s and are you justifying this well?
• How do you plan to examine to data?
• How are you going to pilot the method and detect any problems?
• you mustget access to the relevant data?
• Less is more (cannot include everything)
Well Structured and Sign Posted clearly
• Via research methodologies (collect/analyse data)
Located in the literature
• Current state of knowledge and any debates/controversies
Presented in an appropriate style
• Do you express an engaging project
• Is there a key idea or narrative?
• Form: introduction (topic–research question + literature review –how to get the idea of the research topic & how to design the proposal through the books and the reference materials+ analysis the data +proposal for your future dissertation–The final assignment that you submit does not have to be your dissertation proposal, but it will help you in preparing for your dissertation)
The main references of the literature review must come from the follow books: Quantitative Methods:
Sekaran, U. & Bougie, R. (2013) Research Methods for Business: A Skill Building Approach, 6th ed.,
West Sussex: John Wiley & Sons
Saunders, M., Lewis, P. and Thornhill, A. (2012) Research Methods for Business Students, 6th ed.,
Harlow: Pearson Education Limited
Pallant, J. (2013) SPSS Survival Manual, 5th Edition, Maidenhead: Open University Press
Bryman A. and Bell, E. (2007) Business Research Methods Oxford: Oxford University Press (or later editions)
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