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Assessment Details and Submission Guidelines
Business Research Project
Research Project Development (including Topic, Problem Statement, Research Question), with Team Charter Appendix (Presentation may be requested)
Purpose of the assessment (with ULO Mapping)
Clearly identify your chosen topic, having carried out some basic review of available secondary data to secure your interest (e.g. 5 academic articles OR at least 3 academic articles, plus a business report, plus a relevant current news item). Indicate the Research Problem, as you see it so far, and at least ONE research question at this stage (additional questions may be defined as you progress with this unit). Unless you are a SOLO GROUP (i.e. one person working alone) this assignment also requires the addition of an appendix in which you list the student numbers and names of your team members and complete a Team Charter, indicating what role(s) each will contribute throughout the project. A brief presentation in-class may be requested by your lecturer. Matches to Unit Learning Outcomes 1, 2, and 5
20 % of the total assessments
Not more than 1200 words for the Topic Approval [Note that a Team Charter, which is only to be appended if your team is 2 or 3 persons, not applicable to solo-groups, is additional to the 1200 word-count of the Topic Approval]
Before midnight on the Friday of Week 5, i.e. 23 April
All work must be submitted on Blackboard by 12 midnight on the due date, with a completed Assignment Cover Page as one single document. [If no cover page your mark may be reduced -20%; Late submissions attract penalties at the rate of -5% per day] The group members’ names and student numbers listed on the Cover Page must align with the members officially registered in your group. [any errors or omissions may affect your grade and there is no guarantee of any adjustment] The assignment must be in MS Word format, 1.5 spacing, 12-pt Arial font and 2 cm margins on all four sides of your page with appropriate section headings, paragraphing, and page numbers. Reference sources must be correctly cited in the text of the report, and listed appropriately at the end in a reference list (see Adapted Harvard Referencing)
*Note: Students are required to form groups – a maximum of 3 students per group. If you are unable to form a group, you may undertake this assignment as a solo-group, i.e. you must form a group of 1 and officially enroll in a solo-group. You will not be able to submit your assignment unless you are OFFICIALLY enrolled into a designated group (even if it is a solo-group of 1). Submit as a single document, including the Holmes official COVER SHEET. Once formed, the group composition should NOT be changed for the duration of the trimester. For help with any assignment group matters, please address your email to firstname.lastname@example.org ensuring that your full details (Name, student ID, unit name and number) are included.
Assignment 1 Specifications
This unit aims to give you an opportunity to combine many facets of your acquired MBA skills into the production of a high-quality research project. Your tutor will LEAD and FACILITATE you through the process, week by week. The learning will be progressive, so for best results you will need to be listening to the weekly lectures as well as in contact with your tutor during the interactive tutorials.
Assignment 1 – the Topic Development – is to ensure you have given sufficient thought to the topic you are choosing to base your research project on. The following 3 example topics are to illustrate that your topic must be differentiated from others by means of the following: the actual business activity/problem that it relates to; and/or the economic sector or industry or company that you are focusing on; and/or the country or region that you base it on and/or whether it is about the current time or the short-term future:
Outsourcing supply of ………… (materials / processes) from ………. (country/region) for the ………. (industry/company name) in ……….. (country/region)
Benefits of …………… (club/society/network) membership in promoting business collaboration between members of the …………. (industry) in ………….. (country/region)
The current (or future) uses of ……….. (e.g. Big Data / Robotic Process Automation / Artificial Intelligence) in …………….. (types of transactions) in the ………………. (industry) in ……………….. (country/region)
Those are just examples. Please develop your own unique topic that can hold your interest for the full 12 weeks. Do NOT request approval for your topic or expect your tutor to allocate you a topic. Refer to the detailed assignment instruction for your Topic Development (assignment 1), in which you are required to develop your topic to ensure that it has relevance as a business-related problem and has a specific Research Question that you intend to try and resolve.
The following topics are specifically disallowed this trimester:
Covid/Corona Virus/SARS/Swine Flu/Ebola Pandemic
Do NOT use any of these in any form. If you do your assignment will be non-compliant and will be marked as a 0.
You will ideally work within a group consisting of 2 or 3 class-mates (the maximum size of an assignment group in this unit is 3 persons). Your respective contributions in this first assignment (as well as assignments 2 and 3) will be governed by your assignment group’s Team Charter, which is an appendix you will submit at the same time as your Topic Development. The Team Charter appendix must indicate what roles will be undertaken by each member of the team. If you are working SOLO, the team charter appendix is NOT required.
Your Topic Development Report should be in accordance with the following structure:
Official Cover Sheet
Say why this topic interests your team
Discuss your team’s initial search for relevant literature and show that it has provided you with a good contextual understanding of the topic and its associated business-related problem(s)
Define the Research Problem that your team intends to address (as you see it, so far)
Propose at least ONE research question that your team will be seeking to answer through your research project (additional questions may be defined as you progress with this unit)
Append a Team Charter (unless working Solo) and include the student numbers and names of your team members.
Adapted Harvard Referencing
Holmes has now implemented a revised Harvard approach to referencing:
Reference sources in assignments are limited to sources which provide full text access to the source’s content for lecturers and markers.
The Reference list should be located on a separate page at the end of the essay and titled: References.
It should include the details of all the in-text citations, arranged alphabetically A-Z by author surname. In addition, it MUSTinclude a hyperlink to the full text of the cited reference source.
P Hawking, B McCarthy, A Stein (2004), Second Wave ERP Education, Journal of Information Systems Education, Fall, http://jise.org/Volume15/n3/JISEv15n3p327.pdf
All assignments will require additional in-text reference details which will consist of the surname of the author/authors or name of the authoring body, year of publication, page number of content, paragraph where the content can be found.
“The company decided to implement a enterprise wide data warehouse business intelligence strategies (Hawking et al, 2004, p3(4)).”
Non Adherence to Referencing Guidelines
Where students do not follow the above guidelines:
Students who submit assignments which do not comply with the guidelines may be required to resubmit their assignments or incur penalties for inadequate referencing.
Late penalties will apply per day after a student or group has been notified of a resubmission requirements.
Students whose citations are fake will be reported for academic misconduct.
HI6008 Assignment 1 – Topic Development – Marking Rubric
Topic identification and discussion
Topic is clearly identified with robust concise discussion
Topic is clearly identified with very good discussion
Topic is clearly identified with good discussion
Topic is identified
Missing or confused
Initial literature search
5 or more academic sources with compelling argument
At least 4 academic sources with good argument
At least 3 academic sources with good discussion
At least 3 academic sources with some useful discussion
Statement of Research Problem
Clear, concise, compelling
The research problem is very-well evident
The research problem is well-evident
The research problem is evident
Missing or confusing
Clear, concise, compelling
The research question is very-clearly stated
The research question is clearly stated
The research question is stated
Missing or confusing
Team Charter Appendix (only needed if working in a team, not needed if SOLO)
Eminently clear what role each will play
Each team member has contributed to the Team Charter robust discussion and has an appropriate role
Each team member has contributed to the Team Charter discussion and has a useful role
the Team Charter indicates that each team member has been allocated a useful role
Unclear what role each will play
Total Marks (20)
Late penalty / Cover Sheet penalty
…………………. Days @ -5% per day = ………………….
No cover sheet / incorrect / inaccurate / not single document = – ……………..% (max -20%)
Team Charter Appendix (NOT required if doing the assignment SOLO)
Here the team members must participate in robust discussion during which they discuss their individual interests, strengths and weaknesses and contemplate who can best contribute what over the period of the business research project. For example, while all members of the team must contribute to the whole project, the team members may decide that a particular person will take the lead role in a certain section of the project, such as the sourcing of relevant literature. [If one member takes on the lead role it doesn’t mean that others don’t do any of the work, just that they will be guided by the one leading that section of the project]. It is recommended that each team member assumes a leading role for one aspect of the team effort. The result of your discussions should be documented in a table similar to the one below. [Note that you need to define the roles; those listed are simply examples]. Each person’s name and student number must appear at least once in the table. There may be more than one person allocated to a role.
Team Charter Appendix Template
Team Member Names
Email (i.e. Holmes student email)
Mobile phone number
Note: The maximum team size is 3 persons.
Explain the team’s agreed goals and timeline for completion (Due dates, meetings, milestones, deliverables from individuals)
Who will be responsible for each activity?
What particular team-roles will each member contribute to the team?
What are your team’s expectations regarding meeting attendance (being on time, leaving early, missing meetings, etc.)?
What process will team members follow if they have an emergency and cannot attend a team meeting or complete their individual work promised to the team (deliverable)?
What are your team’s expectations regarding the quality of team members’ preparation for team meetings?
What are your team’s expectations regarding team members’ ideas, interactions with the team, cooperation, attitudes, and team-member contributions in general?
How will your team ensure that members contribute as expected to the team and that the team performs as expected?
How will you collectively manage members whose performance is below expectations?
Add any other team agreements and commitments here
This table may be useful in thinking about team member’s particular skills.
Team Members Lead-Role Allocations (examples)
Sourcing Secondary Data
Scanning articles for relevant information
Summarising articles / developing a logical ‘argument’ / flow
Networking / Relationships
Formatting and Editing
Reference checking / Submitting on Time
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