The initial research proposal will consist of the following SIX (6) items: 1. Identify a business research topic 2. Define the research questions for the identified problem or opportunity 3. Select the appropriate research methodologies and techniques to use for the research project 4. Describe the research process 5. Describe data collection and analysis methods 6. Describe expected research outcomes PROBLEM STATEMENT: What exactly do I want to find out? What is a researchable problem? THEORY, ASSUMPTIONS, BACKGROUND LITERATURE: What does the relevant literature in the field indicate about this problem? VARIABLES AND HYPOTHESES: What will I take as given in the environment i.e. what is the starting point? Which are the independent and which are the dependent variables? OPERATIONAL DEFINITIONS AND MEASUREMENT Does the problem need scoping/simplifying to make it achievable? What and how will the variables be measured? What degree of error in the findings is tolerable? RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODOLOGY What is my overall strategy for doing this research? Will this design permit me to answer the research question? What constraints will the approach place on the work? INSTRUMENTATION/SAMPLING How will I get the data I need to test my hypothesis? What tools or devices will I use to make or record observations? How will I choose the sample? What degree of accuracy or level of confidence can I guarantee? DATA ANALYSIS What combinations of analytical and statistical process will be applied to the data? Which of these will allow me to accept or reject my hypotheses? CONCLUSIONS, INTERPRETATIONS, RECOMMENDATIONS Was my initial hypothesis supported or rejected? Why? What are the implications of my findings for the theory base, for the background assumptions, or relevant literature? What recommendations result from the work? What suggestions can I make for further research on this topic?
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