Advanced Marketing Study (Project)

Coursework 3 of 3 (75% of total module mark): Final Report

 

Word Length; minimum 7,200 maximum 7,500, excluding word count for references

 

Submission Due Date: 18 Oct 2019 for FT students and 20 Oct 2019 for PT students

 

Overview:

The final report is the culmination of your independent research study.  This assessment item follows through from the first piece of assessment, taking the proposal to its logical conclusions with you actually carrying out the research, interpreting and discussing the data collected, and drawing conclusions.  It should incorporate your abstract, introduction, updated literature review, methodology, findings, analysis and conclusions.  It should be fully and accurately referenced in Coventry University Harvard Style and should include your research instruments (e.g. questionnaire) and other relevant documents.

 

The aim of Coursework 3 is to produce a ‘mini research thesis’. Thus the final report will include refined versions of material submitted for Coursework 1 and 2.  Although these sections would contain similar information, they should NOT be copied and pasted into Coursework 3, albeit improved where necessary according to the feedback provided. However, these sections are not reassessed, and therefore do not count towards the marks for Assignment 3. The content of each project may vary slightly. However, the general structure of all reports will be the same and should adhere to the following guidelines.

 

Submission of your project will be online via Turnitin on the module web.

 

Credits/Weighting:

This assessment contributes 75% to total module mark (15 credits). The final complete project will incorporate your literature review from CW2 but it is expected that this work will have been developed and refined from the earlier version submitted for this stage. You should incorporate any developments in your topic area right up to your final project submission date and you should also use the feedback you received from CW2 to enhance your submission here.

 

To pre-empt any misunderstanding the mark awarded for your literature review chapter will contribute towards the 75% of credits available for CW3, it will not change your previous mark for CW2.

 

The Brief:

Your final complete project should include the following sections:

 

  • Abstract/Executive Summary (~200 words)
  • Introduction (~500 words)
  • Literature Review (~1700 words)
  • Methodology (~2100 words)
  • Analysis/ Results (~2000 words)
  • Conclusions (~1000 words)
  • References (not incl. in word count)
  • Appendices (not incl. in word count)
  • Might also want to include Acknowledgments, Limitations and Implications for Future Research

 

More detailed descriptions of each chapter are provided below.

 

Abstract/Executive Summary

 

The abstract is a brief overview of what your project is about and to provide a taster of what is to come.  You can get an idea of different styles and forms of abstract from any of the journal papers that you have read for your project.  Similarly, executive summary is a summary of the problem, your methodological approach to it, your results, and some of the implications. It is crucial that this reads well. One should not reveal everything. It should entice the reader to read more. It should orient the reader as to what the report is about. If done well, it helps the reader enjoy the reading of your report. Note, this should not be longer than one page.

 

Typically this is framed around the following questions:

  • What were my research questions and why were they important?
  • How did I go about answering them?
  • What did I find out in response to my research questions?
  • What conclusions did I draw regarding my research questions?
  • Don’t give it all away though!

 

Introduction

The introduction should provide a lead into your project including the background of the industry, product, company or issue you are researching, explain the gap in the existing research and guide the reader through the rest of your project. You may find that some of the introduction to your original literature review can be incorporated here now that the lit review forms part of a larger document.  Typically this is framed around the following sections:

 

  • Central issue of your research
  • Why it was worth researching?
  • Background on the theoretical/academic basis of your research
  • Brief background about company/market if relevant?
  • Brief background of the research setting
  • Route map for the rest of the project
  • Rationale for your research
  • Your research aims and objectives

 

Literature Review

 

The literature review should provide the theoretical foundation for your study. It should include all the relevant theories and models relating to your research study and should provide a framework for your methodological design and analysis. As it is now part of a complete project there is less need for a detailed introduction as it will follow on from the chapter before, however the work should still be coherent, well-structured and have a clear storyline. In addition it should be an updated and improved version of the lit review that you submitted for CW2. Any new developments in your topic area should be incorporated and you should also use the feedback you received from CW2 to enhance the quality of your chapter generally. Typically it addresses the following purposes:

 

  • Set your study within the wider context
  • How it supplements previous work on the topic.
  • May inform research questions
  • Develop hypotheses
  • Suggest a methodological approach
  • Show how the academic theories discussed underpin your research project
  • The title should reflect content of chapter.

 

Methodology

Your methodology should explain and justify your chosen research philosophy (e.g. positivist/interpretivist, inductive/deductive etc…). You should explain why it is your preferred philosophy in terms of the way that you view knowledge and why it is the most appropriate approach for your particular research questions/objectives. The second part of your methodology should outline your research design, sampling approach, research setting, research instrument (e.g. questionnaire, interview questions), any ethical considerations and the validity, reliability and generalizability aspects.

 

 

Analysis/Results

 

Your findings/analysis/results/discussion can be structured in a number of ways depending on what works best for your particular project. Quantitative and qualitative analysis chapters will tend to differ quite significantly from each other. Again you can get ideas by looking at some of the journal articles that you reviewed in your lit review.

 

Some general rules are that for quantitative results you should make the best use of tables, charts and diagrams to present your analysis. You are likely to have developed some hypotheses for testing and the results of these are quite often summarised in one overall table as well as individual tables generated from SPSS/Excel. The most important tests/analyses may be included in the body copy of the chapter and less important tests in the appendices. Quantitative analyses often report the findings first and then include a follow-up chapter to discuss the findings (called Discussion). This is sometimes incorporated into Conclusions also.

 

For qualitative analysis it is usual to present your analyses in themes, outlining the crux of each theme in your own words and supporting your arguments with verbatim quotes (from your participants). You may include full transcripts in your appendices however it is preferred for you to include your analyses output such as ‘large sheet of paper’ in the appendices and it is good practice to include a profile table analysis of your participants. In both qualitative and quantitative you should compare your findings with those of previous studies so refer back to your literature review and reference those comparisons.

 

As a general rule you should follow the guidelines below:

 

  • Report the facts that your research discovered
  • Include tables/graphs
  • Include verbatim quotes from participants
  • Include narrative accounts of observations
  • Purpose is to present facts – not comment
  • Structure clearly and logically

– Correspond with research objectives

– Thematically

  • Compare to previous research
  • Be selective – important parts

 

Conclusions

 

This is your final chapter and if you have conducted your study well you should have sufficient knowledge and evidence to express your opinion so finally your chance to put your head above the parapet (although still in the third person). The conclusion should be selective and pull out the most important and significant aspects of your findings. It MUST answer all of your research questions/objectives and it should compare your findings with previous literature and theories and show where you have extended knowledge (found new things).

 

In comparison to your findings/analysis it should draw implications and make judgments about your study and in some cases make recommendations to the company or industry concerned. You may wish to include a discussion section in here or implications for Marketing Managers, and it is good practice to acknowledge the limitations of your study (e.g. small sample) and to make recommendations for future research.

 

References

 

Your project should be fully and accurately referenced in CU Harvard Style (guides can be found on the 300MKT module web). Ensure that any direct quotes are properly referenced to avoid plagiarism charges and make sure that you reference your paraphrased content too (they are still someone else’s ideas!).

 

Appendices

 

Be selective here. Do not include everything just in case. Consider whether each item is really necessary. Ensure that it is referred to somewhere in the main body of the report otherwise there is no point. Ensure that you do include:

 

  • Research instrument e.g. blank questionnaire, interview questions (discussion guide)
  • Ethics documentation

– Participant info, informed consent form, etc

– Proof of ethics approval

  • You do not need to include completed questionnaires though!

 

Intended Learning Outcomes

 

  1. Take responsibility for the identification, planning, research and writing of a major written project.
  2. Apply appropriate research methods in the investigation of a business issue
  3. Identify and critically review relevant business concepts and theories from the available academic literature
  4. Draw conclusions based on the analysis of evidence collected
  5. Communicate research findings in an effective manner.

 

N.B.

 

  1. Please note that work submitted late (where an extension/deferral has not been granted) will automatically attract a result of 0%. This will count as a failed attempt, and may result in you failing the module overall. You may be eligible to resit the failed assessment(s), subject to the University’s regulations on reassessment. The maximum module mark that can be awarded for resit work is 40%.
  2. Extensions will be in accordance with University and Faculty policy.

 

Submission Information

 

Submission of your project will be online via Turnitin on the 300MKT module web. Submit by          to the CW3 icon. You may submit more than one draft in order to check your Turnitin plagiarism score (although only one per day). The submission uploaded at the deadline date and time will be the version marked.

 

Checklist:

 

– 7,500 word report (+/- 10%)
– Double/ 1½ line spaced
– Arial/Times New Roman font size 12
– Referenced in CU Harvard style
– Include Cover sheet (Appendix 1), Submission Form (Appendix 2) and Ethics Approval Certificate plus associated documents (if any)
– Include Contents page
– Include page numbers on every page

 

Students MUST keep copies (electronic file if done on computer) of their assignment.

The electronic version of your assignment will be used to enable checks to be made using antiplagiarism software and approved plagiarism checking websites.

 

There will be a penalty of a deduction of 10% of the mark (after internal moderation) for work exceeding the word limits by 10% or more.

 

Marking Criteria

 

A copy of the marking scheme and feedback for this coursework is attached. The final report checklist explains what assessors are looking for when they mark your work.

 

How to submit your assessment

 

The assessment must be submitted by (given date).  No paper copies are required. You can access the submission link through the module web.

 

  • Your coursework will be given a zero mark if you do not submit a copy through Turnitin. Please take care to ensure that you have fully submitted your work.
  • All work submitted after the submission deadline without a valid and approved reason (see extenuating circumstances below) will be given a mark of zero.
  • Extenuating Circumstances – The University wants you to do your best. However we know that sometimes events happen which mean that you can’t submit your coursework by the deadline – these events should be beyond your control and not easy to predict.  If this happens, you can apply for an extension to your deadline for up to two weeks, or if you need longer, you can apply for a deferral, which takes you to the next assessment period (for example, to the resit period following the main Assessment Boards). You must apply before the deadline. You will find information about the process and what is or is not considered to be an event beyond your control at https://share.coventry.ac.uk/students/Registry/Pages/Deferrals-and-Extension.aspx

 

 

Plagiarism

 

As part of your study you will be involved in carrying out research and using this when writing up your coursework. It is important that you correctly acknowledge someone else’s writing, thoughts or ideas and that you do not attempt to pass this off as your own work.  Doing so is known as plagiarism.  It is not acceptable to copy from another source without acknowledging that it is someone else’s writing or thinking. This includes using paraphrasing as well as direct quotations. You are expected to correctly cite and reference the works of others. The Centre for Academic Writing provides documents to help you get this right. If you are unsure, please visit www.coventry.ac.uk/caw.  You can also check your understanding of academic conduct by completing the Good Academic Practice quiz available on Moodle.

 

Moodle includes a plagiarism detection system and assessors are experienced enough to recognise plagiarism when it occurs. Copying another student’s work, using previous work of your own or copying large sections from a book or the internet are examples of plagiarism and carry serious consequences. Please familiarise yourself with the CU Harvard Reference Style (on Moodle) and use it correctly to avoid a case of plagiarism or cheating being brought.  Again, if you are unsure, please contact the Centre for Academic Writing, your Academic Personal Tutor or a member of the course team.

 

 

Return of Marked Work

 

Marked work will be available online in Turnitin. You can expect to have marked work available to you by about 2 – 3 weeks after the submission date. If you fail this coursework you must contact your supervisor asap and arrange a meeting to discuss what you need to do to bring your work up to a pass standard.

 

Note:

 

Please make sure that your name, ID number and the module number appear on the actual coursework assignment as well as on your cover sheet.

 

In addition indicate on your cover sheet your supervisor’s name to ensure that your assignment goes to the correct person for marking.

 

 

 

 

 

300MKT DISSERTATION FINAL REPORT CHECKLIST

The following checklist is for the guidance of students, supervisors and markers in judging the merits of each section of the dissertation report.

 

Overall Outcomes:

Focus on a specific marketing issue.

Formulate a marketing issue into a set of specific research objectives.

Critically analyse the literature relating to a marketing issue.

Apply appropriate research methods in the investigation of a marketing issue.

Analyse valid and reliable evidence to draw valid conclusions.

 

Abstract/Executive Summary

How well has the complete report been summarised?

Introduction

How well does the background set the scene?

How clear is the rationale for the project?

How clear and realistic are the research objectives?

 

Literature Review How widely/deeply has the student read the subject?

Have the key seminal texts been mentioned?

Have the most relevant theories been covered?

Has there been critical analysis of the literature?

Is there a theoretical framework?

Is there a clear and logical need for the research proposed?

To what extent is the text adequately referenced?

 

Methodology

Has the student justified their research plan in terms of perspective, design and data collection and

analysis?

Have the issues of validity, reliability and generalisability been addressed?

Have the data collection methods been fully explained?

How sound is the sampling method and make-up of the sample?

Have ethical issues been fully addressed?

 

Analysis/Results

How successful was the data collection?

Has the data been analysed using appropriate techniques?

Is the data clearly and accurately presented in an appropriate format?

Is there a transparent link between the data and the findings?

Has the student attempted to apply the theories discussed to their findings?

Are the research findings synthesised?

How well does the analysis address the research objectives?

 

Conclusions

Are the conclusions consistent with the analysis?

How closely do the conclusions address the objectives?

Has knowledge been extended?

How appropriate/feasible are any recommendations made?

Has the need for any further research been addressed?

 

Overall

How structured, presented, integrated, logical and coherent is the dissertation?

How clear and persuasive is the dissertation?

How well does the dissertation flow?

How well are issues argued?

Quality of references, accuracy and format