Research Skills Assignment TwoDescription of
Assessment Task Assessment 2 requires you to produce a primary research proposal of no more than 1,500 words to meet the requirements of a scenario you will be given in order to produce a commercial proposal to an organisation.

The proposed work is as follows:
• You will be given a specific scenario in which an organization has a requirement for research.

• You will have to use literature to identify suitable academic theory from which to base a considered approach
• You need to produce a detailed proposal

• You should address the following issues in your review:
o Develop a research proposal drawing on literature with closely argued reasoning

o An explanation of the methods / techniques to be used including a discussion of the strengths and weaknesses

o Why your suggested method / technique is suitable in terms of the benefits to the organization
o The generalisability of results obtained using your method / technique

o An outline project plan identifying the steps required to realize the project in detail with estimated timings
Guidelines and Additional Information

• Select one of the topics from the list provided on page 3 on which to develop your research proposal
• You are required to use the Report Template provided (see page 4) so that your report will be well presented and logically organized.
• This is an advocacy document. You need to clearly explain why your recommended approach is appropriate, and what the benefits to the organization will be.
• Good clear presentation demonstrating effort to communicate effectively is essential and will result in higher grades.
• Use of the Harvard referencing style for citing references – see http://lrweb.beds.ac.uk/guides/a-guide-to-referencing/referencing is mandatory. This not only applies to the bibliography but also to in-text references. This is a major attribute of the Learning Outcome of this unit.
Research Skills Assessment 2 Topics

You are the Market Research Manager for a major producer of chocolate.
You manage a large and busy department conducting many and varied types of research projects.
The procedure is that Marketing or Product Managers write you a brief. Your task is then to respond with a short proposal (the specification has already been given to you in the Assignment 2 Specification)
These are some of the briefs that have recently come into the department. Pick one and respond with a proposal. (You should assume that the questions relate to the UK market only)

1. I am the Brand Manager of Flake. Please can you quantify how my market is segmented, and which segments are the major buyers of the product

2. I am the Product Development Manager of Easter Eggs. I would like to get user reaction to 3 different Easter Egg designs. How could you help me

3. I am the Packaging Development Manager of Bourneville. I would like to get user reaction to new packaging designs. How could we do this

4. I am the Advertising Manager of Dairy Milk Fruit & Nut. I need an assessment of the current advertising campaign and a test of a proposed campaign

5. I am the Marketing Manager of Crunchie. I want an assessment of how much my market share would change if I reduced the size of my chocolate bar 15%

6. I am the Marketing Manager of Dairy Milk Whole Nut. How many extra packets will I sell in the first month of launching a BOGOF

Template for Assessment 2
Research Proposal (50%)

1. Topic Selected

e.g. I am the Advertising Manager of Dairy Milk Fruit & Nut. I need an assessment of the current advertising campaign and a test of a proposed campaign
2. Introduction and Background of Research

Background of the research, why doing this research is important, what is significance of doing this research
3. Research Questions

Research questions this project will address.

Students are expected to rephrase the selected topic into doable, actionable research questions, which narrow down the topic and focus the research project. The identification of the research questions should be based on a short review of relevant literatures.
4. Aims and Objectives

Ideally the aims/objectives should be researchable, realistic, and achievable.
5. Proposed Research Methods

Research design of the primary research; Choose and justify the research method(s) which are appropriate to address the research questions; Type of data to be collected; how will the data be collected; how will the data be used or analysed.
6. Project Plan, Budget and Timeline

Detailed explanation of project plan, project phases, activity timeline and budget of the project tasks.

7. Issues to be considered

Discuss on potential issues you may encounter during the research process, such as accessibility to the data, time and resources needed to complete the research, budget constraint, validity of the data, and potential ethical issues;
8. Potential use of the research findings

What are the likely outcomes of the research How research will benefit the target organization and other potential users of research
9. Conclusion and recommendations

Concluding remarks and recommendations to the client/other stakeholders in relation to the research project.

Research Skills Assessment 2 Grading Sheet

Criterion Description 1 – 34 (F – F-) 35 – 39 (E) 40 – 49 (D- – D+) 53 – 59 (C- – C+) 63 – 69 (B- – B+) 70 – 100 (A- – A+)
Literature used and referencing In the report students should demonstrate their wider reading of business research methods. Student should not rely only on the main text book or web pages. Relevant journal articles should be considered. Poor or failing pieces of work may rely on one textbook and/or some ‘google’ articles. Appropriate, accurate and consistent style of referencing should also be taken into account under this heading. Very little or no use of published work. Poorly referenced if at all. Some attempt to use external literatures. Poor referencing. Heavy reliance on very limited sources. Little evidence of any attempt to collect a broader range of information and literature. Poor referencing. An adequate use of available sources. Correct referencing for the most part. A good range of literature used. The answer demonstrates appreciation of their appropriateness. Full and accurate referencing. An excellent work will have wider reading about business research methods. Relevant literatures are used to support the in-depth review and reflection of research methods as well as case study analysis. Full and accurate referencing.
Understanding of Theory The report should be developed progressively demonstrating students’ understanding of theories, principles, and techniques of business research methods. The report, including elements of principle review & reflection and case study analysis, should demonstrate students’ ability to appreciate various theories and techniques of business research methods and their applications. There is no understanding of the theories and principles of business research methods. A referral principle review and reflection will show poor understanding business research methods with constant misunderstandings. Referral answers will not consider the issues posed in the assessment brief in a coherent or detailed way. A poor review and reflection will show limited understanding of theories and principles business research methods. A very narrow view and a limited range of issues addressed Average principle review and reflection will show students’ general understanding of theories and principles of business research methods. Shows consideration of some of the issues in a reasonably coherent way Good principle review and reflection will demonstrate students’ appreciation of theories and principles of business research methods and their application. Demonstrates a breadth of understanding of the issues posed in the assessment brief. Excellent principle review and reflection should demonstrate deeper thinking of theories and principles of various research methods and their applications. Demonstrates a comprehensive consideration of the issues and related theories, and apply relevant theories to address the underlying issues.
Conclusions and recommend-dations This section relates to the ability of the student to provide a persuasive conclusion and set of recommendations based on the issues raised, arguments and points made in the report. Are the arguments persuasive Are the conclusions supported by the body of the report Little or no argument and very poor conclusions. Poorly argued and with conclusions that just do not follow from the evidence presented. Poorly argued with rather unconvincing conclusions. The reader may well doubt that the conclusions are valid. The work will be reasonably argued but the conclusions will not be entirely convincing from the evidence presented. The reader will have some doubt as to their validity. The work will be soundly argued and the conclusions will be largely convincing but some doubt could remain in the reader’s mind as to their validity. The work will be well argued and the conclusions will follow naturally from the evidence presented. No doubt will be left in the reader’s mind as to their validity. A conclusion that contradicts perceived wisdom and is well justified will be particularly welcomed.
Presentation and completeness The report should be complete which include all the elements according to the requirements. A good report is expected to be organized logically and neatly. Use of language and grammar should not hinder the understanding of readers. The report is incomplete. Main elements are missing. Poorly organized report, without a clear structure, many required elements are missing. Report has been put together without a clear logic. Some required elements may be missing. The readers have difficulty understanding content of the report. All the required elements are included, but some elements may not have sufficient detail. The content of the report is clearly presented. No major difficulties understanding the content of the report The report is well organized with a clear logic. All the elements as needed are included, but a clear flow between the sections may be missing. The report has a logical flow and clear logic between sections. The report is comprehensive with all the required elements included. Readers can appreciate the content very easily.