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Practical Business Project Design and Thesis Writing

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Title: Practical Business Project Design and Thesis Writing


1
Practical Business Project Design and Thesis
Writing
  • Presented by WANG Huan

2
Welcome to the course!
  • Practical Business Project Design (PBPD) and
    Thesis Writing is a course that advanced learners
    can take at the end of their third year at BWOL.
  • It follows World Class English for Business (
    Book 1,2) as part of a series.
  • Learners will be expected to apply what they have
    learned to solving a practical problem related to
    their work.
  • By the end of this course, the learners are
    required to produce a practical project proposal
    and a thesis paper.

3
Outline
  • 1.  General Introduction
  • 2. Course Evaluation
  • 3. Stages in Completing This Course
  • 4. Questions and Answers

4
1. General Introduction
5
1.1 Objectives What will we learn from this
course?
  • Understand the whole process of selecting and
    designing a practical business project.
  • Learn to identify and explore a business issue
    using scientific research methods.
  • Become actively engaged in the process of
    designing a practical business project.
  • Learn to compile a practical business project
    proposal independently.
  • Write a BA degree paper!

6
1.2 Prerequisites What do we need to have?
  • Knowledge of English related to business.
  • Understanding of issues associated with business
    operation.
  • Some working experience related to the issue of
    discussion.
  • Analytical ability as well as an interest in
    doing research.
  • Reading of two textbooks (now available online)
  • Practical Business Project and Proposal
    Design (Hilton) Practical Project Design (Gu) !

7
1.3 Topic Selections Do we have a free choice
of topics?
  • No!
  • BWOL has prescribed 6 areas of problems that
    have been covered in your Business English Course
    as the topic scope for the PBPD and Thesis
    Writing course.
  • However, you have great freedom to decide on your
    topic selection within this scope!

8
6 areas of problems
  • a problem in customer service (BE Modules 2 8)
  • a problem in finance planning and assessment (BE
    Module 3)
  • a problem in product promotion (BE Module 4)
  • a problem in technology utilization in business
    (BE Module 5)
  • a problem in staff management (BE Module 6)
  • a problem in advertising planning or market
    research (BE Module 7)

9
1.4 Schedule Do we have a fixed schedule?
  • Yes. Every one of us should abide by the schedule
    set by BWOL. We should submit 3 assignments to
    the e-platform.

10
Course schedule
  • Course orientation
  • VOB Discussion sessions and feedback on Stage
    One and Stage Two Assignments (Stage Three
    Assignment will be scored.)
  • Submission of Assignments
  • Time table

11
A Rule of Thumb
  • We must check the schedule on the e-platform, and
    better, print out the schedule marking the dates
    and deadlines for the major events.

12
1.5 Learning-support Resources
  • The courseware provides the basic information
    about the course.
  • The e-learning platform has provided some
    reference books and websites articles to help you
    with research paper writing skills.
  • There is also a course-based forum on which you
    can pose questions, get answers and follow
    discussions between learners and tutors.
  • VOB broadcasts allow you to listen to discussions
    and feedback on your assignments.
  • At other times, you can contact your tutor by
    phone or email for personal assistance.

13
2. Course Evaluation
  • How will we be assessed in this course?

14
2. Course Evaluation
  • There are no progress reports or exams associated
    with this course.
  • There are 3 stages of the PBPD and Thesis Writing
    course, and evaluation is based on the result of
    the 3rd assignment submitted.
  • Assignments must be submitted on the e-platform
    in the proper order.
  • Students who fail after submitting the
    assignments will be given only one additional
    chance to pass the course!

15
3. Stages in Completing This Course
  • What shall we do in order to accomplish it?

16
Before start
  • Learn the courseware to get an overall
    understanding of the project design and thesis
    writing.
  • Start thinking about a problem which you or your
    business have encountered and of which you are
    interested in finding a solution.
  • Think about ways of collecting data from your
  • colleagues customers partners
  • or whoever involved in the project!

17
Stage I
  • Problem Identification, Problem Analysis and
    Project Design

18
Research stage
  • Some basic concepts about a practical business
    project (Unit 1).
  • Problem identification (Unit 1).
  • Problem analysis (Unit 2).
  • Project design (Unit 3)

19
Basic concepts about PBPD
  • A planned series of activities carried out in
    order to achieve some specific results in a
    specific period of time.
  • Common features of a project (U1A1T2)
  • Objectives (purpose, hypothesis, stakeholders)
  • An environment (current situation, customer needs
    and wants, SWOT)
  • Inputs (e.g. project team, capital)
  • Strategies and activities (project design)
  • A time-scale (duration)
  • Risks (preventive measures)
  • Outputs (results, discussion, conclusion)

20
Problem Identification
  • In problem identification you are going to decide
    a researchable business problem.
  • l An issue on how to achieve your objectives for
    a practical business project.
  • l A workable problem suitable for practical
    business research (empirical, verifiable and
    specific)!

21
Problem Analysis
  • 6 methods for problem analysis (Unit 2 )
  • 1) the analytic method 2) Socratic
    dialogue
  • 3) cause analysis 4) questionnaires
  • 5) observation 6) brainstorming
  • 3 aspects of current business analysis
  • The financial situation
  • The present stock turnover
  • Customer profiles
  • 2 methods of customer needs and wants analysis
  • a. focus group b. customer surveys
  • SWOT analysis -- Strengths, Weaknesses,
    Opportunities, Threats
  • Your tutor will provide you with some help and
    guidance during the problem analysis stage.

22
  • You are required to write a problem analysis
    of the project. The analysis should include the
    following information
  • 1) A discussion of the current situation
    concerning financial status, human resources,
    physical resources, customer or client profiles,
    social and political environment, etc. related to
    the problem
  • 2) A discussion of needs and wants analysis
    related to the problem
  • 3) A SWOT analysis of the situation related to
    the problem!

23
Project Design (11 items)
  • project objective (s) (U3A1T1)
  • project rationale (U3A2, A3 i.e. why are you
    doing the project, whats the underlying
    rationale for the project )
  • project hypothesis (U3A1T2 i.e. what you are
    going to prove through your project)
  • activities planned to take place (U4A2T3) (in
    words and in flow chart)
  • a critical path analysis of these activities
    (U4A3T1) (in words and in flow chart)
  • people involved in the activities and their
    responsibilities (U4A1T2)
  • time-scale of the activities (U4A3T2) (in words
    and in flow chart)
  • cost consideration (U4A2T1) (in words and in
    table)
  • risk analysis concerning people, time and product
    and your proposed protective measures (U4A2T2)
  • plan for the monitoring and evaluation of the
    project (U4A3T3)
  • a project framework (U4A2T3)

24
Submission of Assignment 01
  • A specific research problem
  • A detailed problem analysis
  • A literature review (bibliography)
  • A complete project
  • A professional project proposal

25
Stage II
  • Thesis writing (first draft)

26
Writing stage
  • Conclusion of the project (Unit 5)
  • Collection of raw data (portfolio)
  • Analysis of raw data

27
Thesis Writing
  • a title page
  • a table of contents
  • an introduction (current situation, project
    objectives hypothesis, outputs, total estimated
    cost, benefits)
  • a main body (detailed activity plan and approach,
    timetable or schedule, cost breakdown)
  • a conclusion (summary of the project, reemphasis
    of the benefits)
  • a bibliography (a list of references)

28
Reminders
  • l Read the relevant units and try to understand
    properly what you will need to do.
  • l  Read the specifications carefully.
  • l Be sure to include all the essential
    information and to present them in the format as
    required.
  • l  Go through the marking criteria following each
    assignment as a checklist.
  • l   A hard copy (printed paper) may be required
    by your tutor in addition for the e-version.
  •     You will need to pass the previous stage
    before you can proceed to the next stage.
  • It is YOUR responsibility to keep in touch with
    your tutor!

29
Submission of Assignment 02
  • Finalized project design and project proposal
  • Data Collection/Appendices
  • Project Implementation
  • Discussion
  • Conclusion
  • Introduction
  • Abstracts

30
Stage III
  • BA Degree Paper (final draft)

31
BA Paper
  • Adjustment to the feedback
  • Proof-reading
  • Finalization of the whole paper

32
Submission of Assignment 03
  • The final draft of BA degree paper should be
  • complete in structure,
  • coherent in content, and
  • polished in language

33
4. Frequently Asked Questions
34
FAQ1
  • Answer
  • Participation in discussion sessions is not a
    requirement, but you still need to keep in touch
    with your tutor. Remember that you must
    successfully complete each stage.

Question What if I cannot participate in
discussion sessions?
35
FAQ2
  • Answer
  • You may find it helpful to review your
    Business English textbooks and read books on the
    BPPD recommended book list. BWOL tutors have
    also compiled lists of sources on the Internet.
    You may also go to bookstores to see if there are
    resources fit for your research.

Question Where can I find ideas and resources
for my research?
36
FAQ3
  • Answer
  • You may try to find a business and design a
    small, simple and practical research project for
    it. However, you need to indicate clearly your
    position in the project. You may also try to sell
    some products or service by yourself, such as
    phone cards, books, gadgets, or serve as a tutor
    for kids, consultant for others, etc.

Question What can I write about if I have
always been a student and have no working
experience?
37
Summary
Identify a problem
38
Thank you! Wish you success!
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