- May 15, 2018 at 6:04 pm
Yes, just ensure it is uploaded somewhere!
Also check your submission confirmation statement which lists out the files (and retain it in case of any future problems about exactly which files were uploaded). If any file is missing from the statement then email it as an attachment to firstname.lastname@example.org TODAY before the p36 submission closes otherwise it will NOT be acceptedJune 2, 2018 at 3:50 pm
Hi all, Im looking to go with Topic 6 for a November 18 submission.
Firstly am I giving myself enough time???
Can anyone provide any tips or good reference places?
Also with regards to the questionnaire and sample size I’m thinking of basing this on a company I know well who will give me approval but they only have a small number of employees (about 20) would this be a sufficient sample size? and if not…is it still usable and a good point to note about the selection?
TPJune 3, 2018 at 3:22 pm
You are doing a very sensible thing – allowing yourself plenty of time to do a good piece of work (so many students leave it until 4-6 weeks before submission and then wonder why they fail!)
First off you need to understand some of the classic motivation theories (as you will subsequently in your analysis and evaluation have to apply them). So you could start by reading up on some of these: Maslow, Herzberg, Vroom, Alderfer, McClelland, McGregor. (A good search engine will bring them up using these key names and motivation)
It is usually better once you understand the theories (I suggest that you make brief notes on each) then to whittle it down to focusing mainly on about 3 (although you could briefly refer to any others if during the course of your research they seem appropriate, however remember overall it is better to apply 3 theories well rather than attempt to apply them all very superficially).
As you have already chosen your company think about which theories may mainly be applicable to them (without trying to pre-empt the outcome of the questionnaire too much) for example (and forgive the generalisations) are the workers mainly low skilled – in which case Maslow and McGregor would possibly be appropriate together with either Herzberg or Alderfer; if on the other hand you are dealing with high achievers then Herzberg, McClelland and Vroom may be more appropriate (although as a general theory Maslow seems to fit just about some of every scenario!)
Using Google scholar as the search engine is a good place to try to look for academic papers if you want to bring in a deeper layer of research (unfortunately though many of the papers require a subscription but if you have access to a good library you may be able to benefit from their group subscription to access some of these sources – ask the librarian)
A sample of 20 can be valid it depends on how representative it potentially is of the organisation – something you will be expected to discuss in Part 2 of your report.
One of the pitfalls of this topic is that students do poor surveys and therefore the subsequent analysis is weak. Spend time designing your questionnaire (read up on how to produce an objective survey) and remember that you need to discuss why and how you chose your sample, mentioning any limitations (so again before you start read up on operational research and how do a questionnaire if you have not studied this area before)
Map the questions to the theories (often it is appropriate to use a Likert scale e.g. ranging from ‘very important’ on a scale down to ‘not important at all’ for a question like ‘How important is it to you that you feel you are contributing to the achievement of departmental /organisation goals?’
You will also need to include a letter of authority from a senior manager permitting you to do the research so organise this asap. You should mention some practices in the workplace e.g. are appraisals annual or more frequent? does the company ever conduct its own questionnaires, is there a staff handbook (these days more likely to be in the form of HR webpages) and consider referring to these in your analysis. Absenteeism and staff turnover figures if available can also be useful statistics.
If you are seeking a higher grade you should also consider modern aspects of workplace motivation (which are too modern for most of the classic theories) e.g. what is the effect of the long hours culture, does the company provide flexible working practices; and does it demonstrate a caring attitude towards employees (any zero-hours contracts and what about sicknees -some organisations these days are very harsh about sick pay and time-off for illness and the like)
For help with actual referencing (a common cause of failure) there is both Appendix 3 of the Official Information Pack and the OT Ultimate Guide (written by Trephena, the OBU forum moderator) on the homepage – which sets out a list of rules which is useful for you to check against when doing your list and reviewing your work.
As you can see there is a lot to think about in these early stages however the more you plan and think about things now the better the likelihood of a good quality end report.
GillianJune 7, 2018 at 1:00 pm
i really need help in passing this topic. i just got enrolled for internship and i want to use the opportunity.
i just do not know how to approach this.
nuru.June 7, 2018 at 1:19 pm
whats the approach?June 7, 2018 at 4:36 pm
@nurumustapha – you can help yourself for a start by reading the Information Pack and looking at how do data gathering and the principles behind primary data collection. There is also a lot of good information on this forum thread so I suggest that you spend some time reading through it (start at the beginning) as unfortunately we really do not have the resources to repeat everything.
For example immediately above your question another moderator has set out quite a detailed response to a student which sets out an approach – so most of the answer to your question is on this page already.
When you have read through and got specific questions that have not been answered before, then please post them here and we shall try to help. However remember that like a lot of things in life, a degree is about trying to work things out for yourself first, with some guidance. There is lots of guidance on this thread so you need to the preliminary reading first.June 20, 2018 at 12:28 pm
Firstly thank you Gillian your response was really helpful.
I’ve drafted my questionnaire and I know this is often a sticking point in passing so want to check I’m along the right lines before I run through it with my mentor.
I have 15 questions, Is this sufficient? I would think it takes 5 mins to answer and I didn’t want it to be too long in case participants get fed up but would that give me enough data to analyse? (baring in mind my small sample size of about 20)
The first few questions are based on the person ie trying to establish their salary and level of education which I’ve read several times is irrelevant BUT if I want to test that a well educated person is more Theory Y… likewise a high salaried person already has their basic needs met – therefore it feels relevant to me, but am I going off track???
I then have 3 sets of questions linked to 3 different theories
each set is laid out differently ie,
rating a list from 1-5 in importance
a rating of rarely to always
tick box of all that apply.
and a final question looking at more modern day needs.
Should I keep all questions in the same format or is it ok to set out as above as long as its clear whats being asked for? This is my main worry…. But again is this something to be discussed. Leave as is and give explanation as to why I’ve done it this way.
2 solid days worth of work have gone into it and I’m pleased with what I’ve come up with but that doesn’t mean it fits with the RAP requirements!!
Any advise gratefully received.
thanksJune 21, 2018 at 6:42 am
That all sounds good. Fifteen good questions are better than 20 poor ones. Maybe an idea to pilot test them – ask family or friends to read them to ensure they make sense and aren’t ambiguous. And yes a survey should be quick and easy for the respondents.
It is fine to collect demographic data as long as it is being used. So no problem with that but just bland statements unrelated to any significant point are not informative (It may even be interesting to note the percentage of women in the higher earning category (as an aside -after 40 years of equality legislation do the stats still show a significant difference I wonder?)
Use the most appropriate format for the responses -you need useful data that you can discuss in relation to the theories. Also if you can relate the analysis to HR policies -e.g. flexible working, employee developmentJune 25, 2018 at 1:05 pmJune 26, 2018 at 2:29 pm
I agree it is not clear from the Information Pack but the basic preliminary discussions about Motivation go in Part 2.
You need to outline about 3 or 4 classical theories (the ones you are going to use as a basis for your questionnaire).
In Part 3 you should show most of the results from your survey in the form of appropriate graphs and charts followed by the significance of the findings in relation to your organisation and the theories – that is where the company’s motivational policies come in.
Try to evaluate the effectiveness of them against the theories and the results you found. So take the results a question at a time, present a chart and then discuss – avoid repeating what the chart shows as the reader can see this for themselves (and so it is pointless and a waste of words) – your role is to focus on evaluating the findings and what this tells you about the effectiveness of motivation in the company and the potential implications of this (bringing in examples from the theory and the policies)July 12, 2018 at 11:35 am
Hello OBU teams,
I am newbie from Vietnam and going to register and submit topic 6 for the Nov period. The theories i will probably use is Maslow, Herzberg, Vroom and Adam in Analysing and Evaluating findings.
First of all, I have already read almost anything of topic 6 and a little bit of tips provided in OBU forum. I really appreciate your hard work, dedication and devotion towards the success of OBU students, especially @trephena and other moderators.
Second, I’ve currently encountered some following problems in planning stage:
1. As regards using Likert scale in designing questionnaires, as i do some search on the internet, i still don’t see any relevant point to my analysis afterwards if people tend to choose neutral option ( sorry for my stupidity 🙁 ).
2. The structure I am going to use for the survey :
A.General info (age,gender, …) : i found this somehow connected to the analysis. My country just reached the lower part of the middle-income developing countries a couple of years ago, there’s no surprise if almost of motivational factors could be explain by demographic analysis.
B. Motivational Factors : A Ranking Question to identify the most important motivation factor and a table comprises score-based questions ( Do not know whether Likert or scores exclude average value?) that list factors related to 4 motivational theories in order to identify the obstacles affect employees’ performance, motivational factors and motivation patterns of the organisation as well.
Is the survey fine if i structure it like that? Do i need to modify or adjust something?
3. In “Analysis your findings” part, if i decide to include General Info Analysis, could i use charts and tables alone to save some words for the main analysis using 4 theories or couple of lines should be given as to illustrating the charts. When analyse the results, is it ok if i simply compare and explain the commons and disparities by using one by one theory under different sub-sections.
4. The industry norms and direct competitor info (salary, annual salary increase rate, net profit margin, labor turnover, etc.) should be take into account as to the evaluating of human resources policy. I found such information really difficult to obtain.
5. Regards to Citation, I’ve just skimmed through @trephena articles and i wonder if we use Kaplan or BPP textbook, we simply refer to those or we need to look for the original sources ( almost original articles charge a fee which is not affordable to me)?
Finally, I know your time is precious and any advice from you would be extremely value to me. Thank you so much again and wish you all the best.July 28, 2018 at 5:54 pm
Just a few questions
1.Is it possible to send online questionnaires say, through google forms? If so in the Appendix do i just insert the link ?
2.If i don’t have access to a physical library will online content (google scholar and the internet) suffice?July 30, 2018 at 7:29 am
Many apologies buinamthang1992 I have only just seen your question.
1. Please do not try to produce the answers to you questionnaire! Your questions are appropriate and you conduct the survey sample well although some people may settle for the middle Andre not everyone should
2. I cannot comment with reliability on different cultural attitudes however people seek out different types of work according to various needs. For example having worked as a professional(an (intercompany accountant or lecturers in the last 30 years) one of my great needs is mental stimulation. However I doubt the cleaners in those organisations had that motivation and and I am sure similarly I would have left a routine role after a short time through boredom. This demonstrates the need for you to survey workers doing different roles and not those at the same level in an organisation
B. I don’t fully understand your question here.
3. You should use charts/graphs to show results and commentary to link any significant findings back to the theories -this is what evaluation is about. Focus on what your findings show in relation to the theories and what it tells you about how the people in your organisation are motivated. (Not all theories apply to every question surely? So in general your approach sounds ok although I would select 3 fairly different Theories) -4 possibly is too many for 7,500 words)
4. Some benchmark with other organisations or statistics is required. Normally countries produce an average wage statistic. Does your organisation have not have starting salaries with pay scales ?
5. You need to use a variety of sources -just relying on a study text is not adequate. A simple Google search should bring up sources. (Unless there are internet restrictions in your country – in which case you need to state this quite prominently in your work otherwise a marker will consider you are being lazy!)July 30, 2018 at 7:34 am
cborerwe – many people use Survey Monkey and include a copy of the questionnaire in the appendices. However there are severe limitations of this method in developing countries as effectively you are excluding those without regular access to the internetJuly 31, 2018 at 5:45 am
Thanks so much for your helpful advice, GillianM.
I do apologise for the vagueness of my terrible English in part B. What i mean is when i use five options in multiple choice question, is it really useful to analyse result? i.e. i found it’s difficult if people tend to choose middle point (Neutral), i haven’t got the idea yet? why don’t we choose 4 options( i.e. 1=strongly dissatisfied, 2=dissatisfied, 3=satisfied, 4=strongly satisfied)?. In my point of view, this type of question will eliminate the “neutral” point( the option people usually choose because it is easy and less time-wasting). Therefore, it seems explicit for analysing and making recommendation later on.
Please help me clarify it because i get stuck in this confusion and can not start gathering data.July 31, 2018 at 9:31 pm
Yes you may eliminate the middle ranking – there are no hard and fast rules about it however many respondents do not always like to be forced to choose between what would then be either a negative or positive position.
Remember it is your project so you are free to choose. Just remember to set out your sampling frame and consider data limitations and this possibly the lack of inclusion of a neutral is something that you should mention and why you have decided to use it.August 1, 2018 at 4:31 pm
I’ve got quite a way into my project now and have written up about 80% but I have much more to add although also a lot of waffle to remove!
Just looking for guidance on how much detail we need to go into in the conclusion and then recommendation.
1-Presumable a one line conclusion isn’t sufficient even though you’ve probably already said it in the results?
2-My recommendations I think I have gone into too much detail as to why they need to be done how they might work how they might fail the costs involved the impact on company the impact on staff….. Im not sure I can give examples here but say i think they need outsourced help with XYZ Can I just put that and give an example of a company who could provide it? Or am I right to explain WHY they need to do this, and costs involved? (Its just taking up too much text!) Also how many recommendations is sufficient? (I have 6, based on the needs identified in the questionnaire)
3-Also how much to we need to stick to the structure? I have results and analysis as 2 separate chapters where as it would be much easier to put the analysis under each result? Although I do find I am just repeating what the graph tells me and not sure what else needs to be said?
Thanks for your help
TAugust 1, 2018 at 8:48 pm
I am an former marker so I am going to be totally frank here. What markers are looking for overall is that you have used the theories well when analysing your results and also that where you can, you have related your results to the company policies and practices e.g. promotion opportunities and training and pay scales.
Your conclusion should be a summary of your results and in effect show that you have fulfilled your research objectives. Although there is no set ‘formula’ some students work I have marked have their objectives as headings in this section and then summarise the results for each of these objectives. For Topic 6 you are also expected to put forward some Recommendations to the management based on your findings.
There is no place for padding in any report (markers see through it and yawn!). Please do not make the common mistake of repeating in your text exactly what the graph shows – although I was too polite myself when a marker on the OBU BSC Applied Accounting
team to write this in the feedback I actually saw one marker comment “I am not blind so why do you think you need to tell me in words exactly what I can see for myself in your graph?” (Annoying the marker is NOT a good idea!) so make sure you are not wasting words by what Lord Alan Sugar would say are statements of the ‘bleeding obvious’ (quote)
Keep your recommendations succinct for as long as you have some relevant Conclusions and a few recommendations your pass and grade will depend on your Part 3 evaluation and analysis
You need a logical structure – as a mentor I ensure students guide the reader through their work as a common mistake by students is to forget the reader! You can separate out the findings and analysis but I wouldn’t recommend this for the RAP as it makes it harder to follow (although at a Masters dissertation level this is what I would recommend as structure is more prescribed). If you separate out the reader then needs to keep scrolling up and down (markers just do not like this as they need to be able to assess work as efficiently and quickly as possible) Lots of headings and appropriate graphs will help the poor overworked marker to make sense of your work and hopefully reward you with a pass 🙂 Good luck!August 4, 2018 at 1:37 pm
guys help me.i am yet to submit my dissertation in November and im still about to start working on it.Im having a hard time with choosing the right topic.At first i had chosen topic 6 but after reading your posts i am now confused.Initially i had thought that its easier than the rest of the topics.Guys can u help me choose a topic that is easy to pass and less tricky,please helpAugust 4, 2018 at 11:10 pm
In my opinion Topic 17 is the most interesting. Provided you choose a an appropriate company which has featured in a recent scandal then there will be a lot of material available for your research.
Unfortunately Topic 6 because it relies on primary data collection does not have a very high pass rate however Topic 17 does. Take a look at the threads for Topics 17, 18 and 20 all of which have decent pass rates to help you decideAugust 7, 2018 at 3:54 pm
thank you so much dear for your advice.God bless uSeptember 15, 2018 at 12:34 pm
Are we allowed to use bullet points within the dissertation rather than a paragraph to save word count? eg
Reasons for choosing topic/organisation
I am nearly finished but need to shorten my word count.
Also are we expected to mention things like quantitative/qualitative data?
Thanks for your help
TSeptember 16, 2018 at 2:21 pm
Although you may use some bullet points where appropriate most of the report should comprise proper sentences.
Normally lots of words are wasted repeating what a graph already shows (I warn against this in an article on my website absolutementoring.uk this is because for a marker it is boring and annoying and treats them as if they are incapable of understanding a graph! So remove all this duplication first. Then edit and trim out superfluous words.
I am unclear what you mean by “are we expected to mention things like quantitative / qualitative data? In what context are you asking – limitations of the data? Actual use of such data? As I don’t understand the question I cannot comment furtherSeptember 17, 2018 at 2:14 pm
Thanks Gillian. I wasn’t intending to use the bullet points in the later part of the report more earlier on. I chose this company because 1,2,3… just saves on a few words but I wont use if not appropriate.
Where we look at the approach, I assume it isn’t enough to just say “I will send out a questionnaire”, so how much detail are we expected to put here? Is it obvious from the questionnaire (hopefully!) and the learning statement that we have looked into how to build a good questionnaire or do we need to spell it out?
If thats the case then in this section I could say the data collected would be quantitative…..
Is something like the above what is expected from us?
Sorry trying to explain without putting too much detail that could be copied by others is hard! My mentor is brilliant for me to bounce ideas around but I’m her first student so neither of us have done this before and understanding the structure is hard.
TSeptember 19, 2018 at 9:48 am
You may use some bullet points as long as most of the report comprises written sentences (rather than the other way round!)
Your assumption “I assume it isn’t enough to just say “I will send out a questionnaire” ” is correct- this would probably result in an immediate fail for ‘Understanding of the models’ and techniques. You should look at some of the research papers on Google Scholar and you will see how professional academicians describe the operational background to their research and also consult Prof Phil Clarke’s article in the Information Pack. The stages in conducting the research are as important the results
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