Group Assessment: Essay Samples
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A reflective report is not just a description, list of events and series of complaints but it is source of illustrating personal judgment and improvements extracted from certain activities. Reflective report can be defined as,
“A considered view, in personal terms, of what an activity or new piece of information means to you or how it affects you. It is acceptable, even necessary, to write about yourself, your realizations, your feelings. Reflective writing requires evidence of what you have learned and what you will take away from the experience.”
The below manuscript is the reflective report of my group project that we have to take up in the ------semester of degree-------. The group project was aimed at developing a research proposal. Our teacher gave us the task to undertake a live project with into the specified areas of sports business and management. It is now very common practice to ask student to elaborate their findings in the form of reflective reports. According to the theory presented by Moughan & Webb (2001) cooperative learning experience is very important for achieving higher benefits in research field. This practice motivates them for better performance in future (Nellis, 2011). The day when teacher allocated us the research topic we were very nervous as none of us have prior knowledge about how to select the research topic and how to prepare the research proposal. Some of the group members take it as challenge while some were seeing at normal practice. This unequal corporation created a risk for corporation of group members (Maughan & Webb, 2001).
Group assignments are the tool for analyzing individual working capabilities in the teams (Johnston & Miles, 2004). It also enhances the individual sense of co-operation and team work. These assignments are attempted to judge individual’s knowledge and experience gained from specific projects and tasks. It is also a practice to evaluate how individual performs subjected to group work. This assignment aims to test our group abilities and skills to tackle the subject matter effectively (Kabsch, 2010).
I am a student of ______________. It is pre-requisite for this degree program to do several assignments. This report is about the group assignment undertaken by me with my other class fellows on the topic of preparing research proposal. As directed by instructor we need to develop the research proposal regarding any issue. Fortunately all of the team members were sport lovers.
Moon (2001) calls the process of selecting research proposal the fundamental stage for any research proposal. Mouton (2001) stated the research proposal as basis of successful research. Thus it is necessary to select the topic which is of most interest to researchers. All of us were sport lovers so we decided to select the research proposal related to sports. KaBo Sport is a newly emerged sport-brand. The reason for selecting this company as a main theme for our research was that e-commerce is important factor in current business scenario.
Aims and goals of the research:
Major goal of the assignment is to prepare a research proposal. The research was combination of primary and secondary data collection. These kinds of exercises develop the innovative skills of the students. I myself had an innovative mind and was must interested to work on this project. Teacher gave us an outline for dealing with this subject matter and our group developed major aims and goals of this assignment.
As described above, we were all having innovative minds and having much interest in companies providing sports goods utilizing the recent resources of e-commerce. Major demand of the assignment was also to conduct live project. This is why our group selected the start up business owned for proving sports goods (Borzekowski et al., 2008). After a comprehensive discussion we all agreed upon that following points can be enough to completely explore the subject of the assignment,
These were some of the issue which according to us was accurate for exploring the subject matter. All the research objectives were developed keeping in view their achievement and activity. We have to take extreme designing questionnaire and data collection. The major mistake that we committed while selecting the topic was that we did not specify any market of any specific areas so we had to face challenges in grouping the data accordingly (Suzuki, 2003).
The work was also started innovatively. We all brainstormed on the topic for a couple of days. This helped us to collect a good data of facts about the company and we also brainstormed to develop the research proposal in accordance with company selected. A study conducted by Brown & Paulus (2002) also confirmed that brainstorming can make the group tasks more effective and efficient. Paulus & Yang (2000) also stated that experimental brainstorming can make the work more interactive and learning. We worked according to the model presented by Paulus (2000) in her paper. He presented the semantic brainstorming model for group thinking in his research. This model is also helpful in enhancing the long term memory of the group members. The study further confirmed that utilization of the brainstorming while conducing group literary activities is beneficial for achieving group aims. An individual cannot brainstorm alone in the group. He needs to resonate with the groups and solitary idea-generations sessions (Leggett et al., 1996). The major target was to develop a plan that could completely justify our topic and help us to explore new opportunities. We did not divide the whole work into group members but every member equally contributed to each part of the assignment. This activity also helped in maintaining a balance for all stages of the work.
The initial literature review was also necessary to formulate the basis for the research. We spend huge time in this part of the project. This review identified major factors that we can include into our study. Literature review also suggested the pattern used in other studies for dealing such behavioral studies. Although we spend a lot of time but still we felt that we did not fully covered some of the important parts of the business that can be considered as a issue (Huang et al., 2007).
Initially we clear some of our ambiguities about the topic and objectives. Internet search paved us way for clearing our concepts and ambiguities (Chung et al., 2004). This helped us in further processes too. There was not adequate information on the web so we had to go for new papers, journals and company pages. I also tried to meet some company officials. After going through this we realized that the actual situation may sometime vary from apparent condition. After gathering enough data about the research methods we designed our research project (Chiang et al., 2000). Research design was combination of independent and dependent variables. The independent variables we selected for our study were sales promotion, sense of financial control, convenience and security. The dependent variable for our study was the satisfaction and loyalty of the customers. We took to dependent variables but after finalizing the proposal we identified that using single dependent variable could give more clear and concise results as compared to two or more dependent variables (McMillan & Schumachar, 2014). The selection of the variables was toughest part of this assignment. Coolican (2014) also stated that variables are most important for designing any research. Esteem care should be done in selecting the research variables. These variables decide the outcome of the research.
We selected to complete this task in fifteen days but it took us more than fifteen days to just gather enough data about the company. The project needs to conduct both primary and secondary data collection. Secondary data was collected and utilized for literature review part. Primary data was collected using questionnaire. Here we did it mistake. We could not schedule our interview efficiently and thus have to face problems while conducting interviews. People were reluctant to share their information’s and we did not devise alternative strategies to gather such information’s. Here we understand the basic thing about humans and their behaviors. Despite of showing clear code of conduct on start of questionnaire we could not satisfy many respondents. Consequently we have to find out alternative ways to collect the desired information from respondents. Ryan & Deci (2001) interpret that human always reluctant to show their personal information’s. This motivates us to select the unusual method like focus group discussions and observations to gather information about respondents.
The great setback which we had to face at the end of second week was that we got too much involved in data collection that we ignored the writing of the assignment. Then we realized that we must note down each and everything under some headings from start of the time. Our teachers are not concerned with gathered data. They judge our work through our presentations in the form of elaborate report (Cooper & Schindler, 2003).
Although we worked hard for this assignment but poorly managed data and incomplete assignment will show only our slackness in completing the task. This would be sufficient for gaining fewer marks in the assignment. But our major aim was to learn some new innovative techniques from real world examples along with getting high marks.
We collected the necessary data for this assignment using Internet source, journals and library. The next task was compilation of this material in an efficient and effective way. Plagiarism is new concept preventing the copy paste. In order to avoid high plagiarism one must write each and everything in our wordings. This trend also enhances the students grasping power. We also tried to fully understand the topic and then try to reproduce the concept in own words (Sandelowski, 2000).
Collecting data was the most amazing part of the whole project. We have to face different people and bear their strange responses. Questionnaire filling tend to be like herculean task. People were not ready to share their personal information’s. So we have to devise alternative ways to gather the data. We have to take the support of their gestures, eye contact, and motion to judge about truth of their wordings. Some questionnaires were filled through emails or via telephonic conversations. So these have to include into the data with some precautions.
The data presentation mode we select was in the form of charts and graphs after conducting analysis using SPSS. But this could become much better if we incorporate micro fit model .As this model is latest and most convenient to use. Beside it gives highly valid results (Bickel, 2012).
All of the students were advised to submit their work for checking. The assignment report was not tending to be submitted into to word of word format. Rather we need to present our findings in the form of research proposal. The word need to present within word limit given. Initially we faced many hardships in managing the work according to the slide limit. But with continuous exercise we arranged the work accordingly (Conway & Briner, 2005).
Main hurdles of the assignment:
Although I prefer individual assignments over team works but the team work has developed my habit to work in coordination with other members. In team work all work is divided among team members so workload is manageable (Kabsch, 2010). We divined the whole parts equally among each member. Every member participated equally in all tasks from data collection to writing. I felt severe shortage of managerial skills in me. The exercise taught me that I had to develop proper managerial skills in order to be competent. This group assignment also taught us the problems of the researchers and surveyors. We sometime feel reluctant to share information’s with the researchers but it is very necessary to give them desired information’s. They are trying to find out valuable information from this practice (Schulz et al., 2010).
Limitations of the assignment:
There were several limitations of this group assignment. One of the major limitations was focus group was only targeted of the aged from 15 to 24 therefore we could not collect the opinion out of this group. The questionnaire was rigid and so could not gather flexible data about the respondents. We gather information through survey and focus group but response rate was low.
The major step needed to improve this research is to include more variables like preference, availability, selection, price etc. These variables could lead to the more accurate and valid results. I could also recommend that we should expand this research to other areas so that we can know more about the consumer behaviors about the debit card purchases. We should use AIDA model for conducting new and further research (Smith & Swinyard, 1982).
Lesson learnt from the assignment:
As dictated before we gained many important lessons through this group assignment. One of the major lessons learned was practical applicability of theories and concepts in real life business examples which is very necessary for research students. Through this assignment, we realized that proper development of innovative and creative skills can be done only though exploring the real life businesses.
In the end it can be concluded that, this assessment not only increased my knowledge of the subject matter i.e., important aspects of the designing research and making research proposals. This practice enhanced by knowledge about current scenarios in designing research. We gained lots of information’s about also came to know about the subjects confronted and the limitations recognized in arranging and designing research. Further we also came to know how to address any discrepancies in marketing department. It also gave us valuable information about the future business studies for my career development. We also came to know amazing fats about the utility of the research (Rosier, 2002).
Bickel, R. (2012). Multilevel analysis for applied research: It's just regression!. Guilford Press.
Brown, V. R., & Paulus, P. B. (2002). Making group brainstorming more effective: Recommendations from an associative memory perspective. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 11(6), 208-212.
Chiang, L. J., Papierniak, K. A., & Thaisz, J. E. (2000). U.S. Patent No. 6,128,624. Washington, DC: U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
Chung, W., Zhang, Y., Huang, Z., Wang, G., Ong, T. H., & Chen, H. (2004). Internet searching and browsing in a multilingual world: An experiment on the Chinese Business Intelligence Portal (CBizPort). Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, 55(9), 818-831.
Coolican, H. (2014). Research methods and statistics in psychology. Psychology Press.
Cooper, D. R., & Schindler, P. S. (2003). Business research methods.
Conway, N., & Briner, R. B. (2005). Understanding psychological contracts at work: A critical evaluation of theory and research. Oxford University Press.
Huang, J. H., Lin, Y. R., & Chuang, S. T. (2007). Elucidating user behavior of mobile learning: A perspective of the extended technology acceptance model.Electronic Library, The, 25(5), 585-598.
Johnston*, L., & Miles, L. (2004). Assessing contributions to group assignments. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 29(6), 751-768.
Kabsch, W. (2010). Integration, scaling, space-group assignment and post-refinement. Acta Crystallographica Section D: Biological Crystallography, 66(2), 133-144.
Kotler, P., & Armstrong, G. (2013). Principles of Marketing 15th Global Edition. Pearson.
Leggett, K. L., Putman, V. L., Roland, E. J., & Paulus, P. B. (1996). The effects of training on performance in group brainstorming. In annual meeting of the Southwestern Psychological Association, Houston, TX.
McMillan, J. H., & Schumacher, S. (2014). Research in education: Evidence-based inquiry. Pearson Higher Ed.
Mouton, J. (2001). How to succeed in your master's and doctoral studies: A South African guide and resource book. Van Schaik.
Nellis, M. (2011). The integration of probation and electronic monitoring–a continuing challenge. A reflective report for CEP.
Paulus, P. B., & Yang, H. C. (2000). Idea generation in groups: A basis for creativity in organizations. Organizational behavior and human decision processes, 82(1), 76-87.
Rosier, G. (2002). Using reflective reports to improve the case method. Journal of Management Development, 21(8), 589-597.
Ryan, R. M., & Deci, E. L. (2001). On happiness and human potentials: A review of research on hedonic and eudaimonic well-being. Annual review of psychology, 52(1), 141-166.
Sandelowski, M. (2000). Focus on research methods-whatever happened to qualitative description?. Research in nursing and health, 23(4), 334-340.
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Suzuki, K. (2003). U.S. Patent No. 6,612,488. Washington, DC: U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
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