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Business Research


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Business Research

  1. 1. 1 BUSINESS RESEARCH COURSE SYLLABUS – SPRING 2011 SCHOOL: School of Professional Studies DIVISION : Business HOURS, CREDIT NUMBER/TITLE: 3 Hours, GBUS 3753 Business Research ONLINE COURSE INSTRUCTOR: Ms. Karen A. Sneary Office Phone Number: 580-327-8509 Office Number: Room 220, Jesse Dunn, Alva Office Hours: 11-12 MWF; 1-3 MW; 9-12 T Or by appointment E-Mail: TEXTBOOK Business Research Methods, 11th edition. Donald R. Cooper and Pamela S. Schindler. McGraw- Hill Irwin. ISBN 9780073373706. COURSE DESCRIPTION Applied business statistics and research techniques relevant to business decision making. PREREQUISITES MATH 1313, MATH 1513 and ENGL 1213. Students must complete the Prerequisite form found in BlackBoard under Course Documents and return to instructor by Monday, January 17. Students must read this syllabus in its entirety. Questions related to many of your questions will be found within this document. Please do not ask a procedural question without consulting this document first. You will be asked to complete an initial attendance assignment that requests that you acknowledge that you have read this syllabus and agree to abide by the policies set forth within it.
  2. 2. 2 Departmental Goals 1. Each graduating student should have basic knowledge of the various disciplines in business. 2. Each graduating student should have well developed communication skills and be competent in the use of technology. 3. Each graduating student is expected to think critically. 4. Each graduating student is expected to possess good interpersonal skills. 5. Each graduating student should have the ability to formulate good ethical judgments. Course Objectives By the completion of GBUS 3753 Business Research, a student should be able to: 1. Discuss business trends and their impact on business research 2. Analyze and understand various types of research used in business 3. Distinguish between population and sample, analyze factors that influence sample size, determine appropriate sample size 4. Discuss difference between qualitative and quantitative statistics 5. Create and assess the use of questionnaires as instruments for data collection 6. Describe the nature of relationships between variables 7. Describe the elements of a research proposal 8. Convey the importance of effective communication to the research process 9. Prepare a thorough report on a research project using effective communication skills. Performance Measures Grades will be assigned based on the following grading schedule: 90 – 100% = A 80 – 89% = B 70 – 79 % = C 60 – 69% = D Below 59% = F Course point breakdown: 4 Exams (100 pts. each) = 400 points 20 Quizzes (10 pts. each) = 200 points 14 Case Study Assignments (50 pts. each) = 700 points Course Discussions (20 points each) = 100 points Research Project = 400 points Total points = 1,800 points Homework: The case studies used in this course are downloadable from the text website at Please consult the assignment section of this syllabus for the correct case study to complete for each chapter. Incorrect submissions WILL NOT be graded. Each case study is worth 50 points for a total of 700 points possible. Please be sure to answer the questions thoroughly in order to earn the full credit. A one or two sentence answer for each question will generally not be sufficient for full credit-ensure you answer the question fully vs. “writing something down to get by.” A MINIMUM of one single-spaced 12 point font
  3. 3. 3 page is required. Papers that are shorter than specified are considered not acceptable and will not be graded. Quizzes: Twenty quizzes will be completed and turned in through Blackboard. The quizzes are worth 10 points each (total points 200) and will assist you in identifying some of the important points of each chapter. The quiz must be completed prior to the beginning of the chapter discussion (the only exceptions are quiz one and quiz two, which must be completed during the first week). Exams: Four exams will be given during the course of the semester. These exams will be administered via Blackboard. The exams, worth 100 points each, will consist of multiple choice, and/or problem-based questions. Makeup Exam and Quiz Policy: Students will not be allowed to take makeup exams or quizzes. If an exam is missed, the student will be required to take a comprehensive exam during the week of finals which will count towards the missed exam. The makeup exam will need to be scheduled with Ms. Sneary prior to finals week, so that arrangements can be made to make the exam available to you. Missed quizzes cannot be made up. Discussion Board: (100 points) There will be a minimum of five discussion board forums during the semester. Students are expected to respond thoughtfully and think critically as they respond to the each forum. Points will not be awarded for responses that do not show adequate critical thought process such as “I agree.” Students should carefully consider their responses to each discussion item and also respond a minimum of three times to the thoughts of their peers for a richer discussion. Research Project: (400 points) This assignment MUST be completed for successful completion of this course. Failure to complete this assignment will result in a failing grade being assigned regardless of the student’s overall grade. You will need to break into teams of 2-3 students per team. Three is the maximum number allowable per team. Individual projects are not allowed. You must submit your team member names to me no later than January 30th by 11:30 p.m. via an assignment link in Blackboard. Failure to complete this task in a timely fashion will result in a 10% penalty deduction on the final score of this project. You will need to select a company to conduct a research project for. You do not have to physically contact this company, but you will be required to conduct legitimate research regarding the company. This will entail accessing information regarding the company and its products. I would suggest consulting various business-related magazines to locate a company that is struggling to survive. You must have your company selected no later than February 6th. This information must be submitted via Blackboard by 11:30 p.m. that evening. See above for missed deadline penalty. You will need to construct a questionnaire with a minimum of 15 questions (no more than 5 can be demographic in nature). This questionnaire must be administered to a minimum of 30
  4. 4. 4 successful respondents. You may choose the administration method (phone, mail, email, in- person). Results must be submitted in an Excel spreadsheet via Blackboard no later than April 3rd at 11:30 p.m. See above for missed deadline penalty. After completion of the survey, you will assemble a project report that includes your research findings and recommendations. This report is to be a minimum of 15 pages single-spaced, 12- point font in length. This report will be due no later than April 24th at 11:30 p.m. Failure to meet this deadline will result in a grade of zero for the project. Please see the Sample Student Project on the book’s companion site for an example of this project. Services for Students with Disabilities Any student needing academic accommodations for a physical, mental or learning disability should contact the Coordinator of Services for Students with Disabilities, or faculty member personally, within the first two weeks of the semester so that appropriate accommodations may be arranged. The location for ADA assistance is the Fine Arts building room 126 on the Alva Campus. The location for ADA assistance on the Enid campus is Room 102 and the contact is Lori Coonrod. The location for ADA assistance on the Woodward campus is the Main Office and the contact is Dr. Deena Fisher. The location for ADA assistance at the University Center at Ponca City campus is the Main Office and the contact is Dr. Brenda Stacy. IMPORTANT PROCEDURAL INFORMATION: I do not utilize the course announcements section of Blackboard to inform you when items are due. The syllabus contains the information you need to be successful in this class, including all due dates. I expect each of you to follow the due dates in this syllabus versus relying on reminders from me on managing your assignment and reading loads. Students are expected to REGULARLY check their university-provided email account as this is where all class correspondence will be delivered to. Failure to check your email account is not a valid excuse for missing correspondence. If you are having a problem accessing your campus email, you need to contact IT immediately to correct the issue. Please see the “Email access page” available from the NWOSU homepage for a tutorial. Students are expected to note the particular class they are discussing in the email subject line. I will not respond to emails that do not include a subject line. All emails must be written in a professional manner. The Division of Business has adopted a “writing across the curriculum” plan of operation for the business program. As such, I expect you to conduct yourself in a professional manner even in your email conversations. This statement provides an expectation that you will review your email for typographical and grammatical errors before sending it to me. Emails should always include your name and students should not assume that the instructor will know who the student is based simply on the NWOSU email address. Treat email just as you would treat your assignments. This practice will serve you well as you enter the business world. Examples of unacceptable email content: 1. Emoticons of any type.
  5. 5. 5 2. Multiple punctuation marks-for example (???? or !!!!)-simply express what you are trying to ask or state versus attempting to convey the message in a format that may not be clear. 3. Texting language is unacceptable for email. For example, the pronoun “I” should always be capitalized and the pronoun “you” should always be spelled out. 4. Excessive grammatical errors-the messages you send reflect directly on your abilities and you always want to present yourself in the best light possible at all times-making statements such as “what’s up with this” is not considered proper business etiquette. 5. Accusatory verbiage or implications-if you approach a business situation with wording that automatically puts the reader on the defensive, you will usually be unsuccessful at accomplishing what you planned. All homework must be submitted as an attachment in a Word-compatible format versus cutting and pasting or typing in the comments box on Blackboard. Any assignment that does not meet this requirement will not be graded and cannot be made up. All due dates have a completion time of 11:30 p.m. All assignments must include the student’s last name, first initial, and name of the assignment. Discussion over test question concerns: I do accept discussion inquiries concerning questions on exams and quizzes that you may believe are incorrect. Any such inquiry must be completed within 48 hours of your completion of the test. Inquiries received outside that parameter will not be considered. This is a method for you to discuss questions that you are fairly confident may have a wrong answer. (There are not generally many questions such as this) Students are expected to be respectful of this benefit-this is not an encouragement to inquire on every question you miss or ask me to give you free points because “the answer was none of the above and I forgot to answer the question-I ought to get the points.” Abuse of this privilege (through misuse of the process or disputing my decision) can result in discontinuance of the ability to inquire about potential issues. This will be determined on an individual student basis and will be documented. If you wish to inquire about a question you MUST follow the guidelines below: 1. Copy and paste the question, your answer and the answer the quiz/exam lists as correct 2. Find supporting materials in your text or other reputable sources 3. Provide a listing to a page number or a source and location with the question submission 4. I will consider your submission and advise you of my decision within a week 5. All decisions are final Any inquiry that does not follow these guidelines will not be considered and cannot be resubmitted. Our Blackboard technicians have posted an instruction guide on every class home page and the initial login page that will tell you what to do with your computer settings if you are on
  6. 6. 6 Vista or Windows 7. Please make sure this setting is correct BEFORE you attempt to do an assignment or take a test as it is the student’s responsibility to ensure they are prepared to proceed with online work. This should be a one-time process on your own computer versus a lab computer, but I encourage you to “just make sure” before you begin a test as the only way I can reset a test is to completely erase it and let you start over…(See below for a reason why this may not be a good option). Additionally, I do not weight scores; therefore you can figure your grade at any time without assistance. You can simply total your points received and divide by the number of total points available at that point in the course to arrive at your percentage which can be compared to the chart above. Any comments that are made on your graded papers can be accessed by going to the grade book on Blackboard and clicking on the appropriate grade. Finally, online courses work much like the “real world” that you will be entering in the future or you are already operating in. Failure of infrastructure happen, just as in the “real world”…and in the “real world” your boss doesn’t offer you a “do-over” just because you had a flat or there was an accident and you were late to an important meeting. I treat this course the same way. Waiting until the last minute to do an assignment is not an excuse for missing a deadline. The last six hours of an assignment’s deadline are considered “at your own risk” times. This means that you take it upon yourself to determine whether you wish to risk an infrastructure failure or delay that could result in you not receiving credit for an assignment or test. I do this as I may or may not be able to quickly get to a computer to help find a solution to the issue you may be having. This class will be conducted in an online learning environment. This will require you to utilize your time effectively and plan to complete work required in the course each week. Online courses typically require more work than a face-to-face or ITV course in that you are expected to read the chapter and complete assignments without the continual verbal reminder. You must prepare for class and will not be successful if you wait until right before an exam to try to learn material. I expect students to be able to think critically and carefully consider responses. ACADEMIC INTEGRITY ACADEMIC DISHONESTY: Students who are found by the professor to have engaged in academic dishonesty are subject to sanctions imposed by the professor and/or university. These sanctions may range from a warning to dismissal from the university. The appropriate penalty for an act of dishonesty will be determined by the professor, with or without consultation with the department chair, dean or University’s Executive Vice President. Penalties for academic dishonesty may vary depending on the facts and circumstances of the situation, person involved, the nature of the dishonest act, and such other factors as determined by the professor or university. The penalty structure is not intended to be a progressive disciplinary scheme. The sanction to be applied is in the discretion of the professor.
  7. 7. 7 Any student who is penalized for academic dishonesty by the professor has the right to appeal the sanction. The student will be advised of the appeal process should it become necessary. ORIGINAL WORK: The paper should be the original work of the student. Students may not use a paper for two different classes without the express consent, in advance, of both professors involved. To use a paper in two classes without the express consent of both professors is academic dishonesty. Further, students should limit the amount of direct quotations used within a paper. Direct quotations should only be used for emphasis or because it is important for the reader to know the exact wording. Otherwise, student should paraphrase the ideas, thoughts and words of others. [NOTE: The student still must provide a citation to the other person’s work or else it is plagiarism.] There is no set limit on the amount of material in the paper that are direct quotations. As a guide, under most circumstances, a student should attempt to have less than 10% of the paper being the words of others (direct quotations). Paper grades will be lowered if there is too much content that is in the words of others. PLAGIARISM: According to Robert Perrin, Pocket Guide to APA Style, Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004 (p. 15-16): Plagiarism is the use of someone else’s words, ideas, or line of thought without acknowledgement. Even when it is inadvertent – the result of careless note- taking, punctuating, or documenting – the writer is still at fault for dishonest work. Under the rules of NWOSU, plagiarism is academic dishonesty. The NWOSU Student Handbook provides the following: All forms of academic dishonesty including cheating, plagiarism, unauthorized possession of exams or other materials, forgery, or alteration or misuse of university records, are subject to disciplinary action by the university. The forgery of faculty signatures is prohibited. You must get authentic signatures on all official documents. (Student Handbook, p. 125) COLLABORATION: Depending on the assignment, students may elect to work together on preliminary matters. If the assignment is such that collaboration is appropriate and the professor has not banned collaboration, students may feel free to help each other. However, unless a group paper is assigned, the end product must be the original work of the individual. Any variation would be academic dishonesty and handled appropriately.
  8. 8. 8 What is the difference between collaboration and academic dishonesty? This example may help. As final exams approach a group of students meet to study together. They may discuss the various issues that they believe will be on the test. They may ask each other questions and discuss various points. However, on test day each of the students must take the test by themselves. Likewise, students may discuss various aspects of the paper and issues related thereto, but when it is time to write the paper, each student must research and write the paper individually. CITATIONS: All direct quotes, indirect quotes, other’s original thoughts, facts not commonly known and other such material must be cited. If there is a question in your mind whether or not to cite a source, to avoid possible plagiarism, cite. If the material in the paragraph is from the same source, then a citation at the end of the paragraph is acceptable. However, you must place a citation immediately after every direct quote even if the entire paragraph is from the same source. In that case there would be two or three citations, depending on where the direct quotation is placed within the paragraph. If only part of the content of a paragraph is from a certain source, then the citation should be at the end of that material so it clearly indicates that the rest is not from the same source. QUOTATIONS: A direct quotation of 49 words or shorter (approximately three lines or less) is considered a regular quote. Such a quote should be placed in quotation marks. Periods, commas and question marks at the end of the quote should be inside the quotation marks. Failure to place such a quote within quotation marks and/or failure to cite the source, intentionally or unintentionally, is plagiarism. LONG QUOTES (BLOCK QUOTES): A direct quotation that is 50 words or longer (approximately four lines or longer) is considered a long quote. Such a quote should be formatted in a long quote or block format. The block format is to indent the quotation an extra ½-inch on both sides and single space the quotation. The line before the long quote should end with a colon and quotation marks should not be used at the beginning or end of the block quote. Within the block quote, new paragraphs are not indented any more than the block format indentation, but an extra line separates the paragraphs. It is important that you introduce the quotation so the reader understands that this is a quote rather than your original work. When using a bullet list or similar format, it is the responsibility of the student to clearly indicate if it is a direct quote or a compilation of information by the student. Either direct quote or compilation of information would require a citation. Therefore simply having a citation does not mean that the material is a direct quote. Failure to properly indicate a direct long quotation, intentionally or unintentionally, is plagiarism.
  9. 9. 9 COURSE OUTLINE AND TENTATIVE SCHEDULE The instructor reserves the right to modify or change the assignments in this list. No late work will be accepted. It is the student’s responsibility to meet the deadlines posted below. Use the syllabus and schedule to plan accordingly. Week Chapter(s) & Material Covered Homework, Discussions, and Case Studies Test/Quiz Due Date For Assignments, Quizzes and Tests January 10 Chapters 1&2 Post Introduction; Read Ohio Lottery Case and discuss on Discussion Board; Read syllabus, Read Code of Ethics Statement and complete Quiz that you have read Code of Ethics; Complete Quiz for chapter 1. Chapter 1 Quiz; Code of Ethics Quiz Syllabus Quiz Prerequisites form completed and submitted to Ms. Sneary January 16 prior to 11:30 p.m. January 17 Chapters 2 & 3 Akron Children's Hospital Ethical Considerations in Research Discussion Board Chapter 2 Quiz Chapter 3 Quiz January 23rd prior to 11:30 p.m. January 24 Chapters 4 & 5 Chapter 4 Quiz Chapter 5 Quiz Exam 1 (1-5) January 30th prior to 11:30 p.m. January 31 Chapter 6 Lexus SC430 Information Sources Discussion Board Chapter 6 Quiz February 6th prior to 11:30 p.m. February 7 Chapter 7 USTA: Come Out Swinging Chapter 7 Quiz February 13th prior to 11:30 p.m. February 14 Chapters 8&9 Starbucks, Bank One, and Visa Launch Starbucks Card Duetto Visa Chapter 8 Quiz Chapter 9 Quiz February 20th prior to 11:30 p.m. February 21 Chapter 10 Ramada Demonstrates Its Personal Best™ Chapter 10 Quiz Exam 2 (6-10) February 27th prior to 11:30 p.m. February 28 Chapters 11&12 State Farm: Dangerous Intersections Chapter 11 Quiz Chapter 12 Quiz March 6th prior to 11:30 p.m. March 7 Chapter 13 Chapter 14 McDonald’s Tests Catfish Sandwich Sampling Design Discussion Board Chapter 13 Quiz Chapter 14 Quiz Exam 3 (11-14) March 13th prior to 11:30 p.m. March 14 SPRING BREAK SPRING BREAK NO ASSIGNMENTS SPRING BREAK March 21 Chapter 15&16 Pebble Beach Chapter 15 Quiz Chapter 16 Quiz March 27th prior to 11:30 p.m. March 28 Chapter 17 Volkswagen's Beetle Chapter 17 Quiz April 3rd prior to 11:30 p.m.
  10. 10. 10 April 4 Chapter 18 Can Research Rescue the Red Cross? Writing Research Findings Discussion Board Chapter 18 Quiz April 10th prior to 11:30 p.m. April 11 Chapter 19 Goodyear's Aquatred Chapter 19 Quiz April 17th prior to 11:30 p.m. April 18 Chapter 19 NetConversions Influences Kelley Blue Book Chapter 20 Quiz April 24th prior to 11:30 p.m. April 25 Chapter 20 AgriComp Exam 4 (15-20) May 1st prior to 11:30 p.m.