Assessment Task 1: Overview

 
Value:       50%
Due:          3 March @ 7pm
Task:         Write a 2,000 word (+/- 50 words) essay based on one of three essay questions.
 
Submission
You are required to submit your essay electronically via TURNITIN.
You are required to self-assess as part of your submission.
 
Assessment Criteria

  • Key issues relating to the question have been developed
  • Original and clear argument
  • Logical and convincing discussion
  • Ideas and assertions substantiated through use of high quality reference material and key academic perspectives/views used to develop arguments
  • Appropriate Harvard style referencing (in text and list of references)
  • Number and quality of references
  • Clear and comprehensive written style (spelling, grammar, syntax etc.)

 
Plagiarism
It is the presentation of the work, idea or creation of another person, without appropriate referencing, as though it is one’s own. Plagiarism includes cutting and pasting text from websites, and will be severely penalised. The use of another person’s work or ideas must be acknowledged. Failure to do so may result in charges of academic misconduct which carry a range of penalties including cancellation of results and exclusion from your program
 
Assessment Task 1: Essay Topics
Blackboard > Assessment > Assessment Task 1 – Research Essay
 
Research Essay – 2000 words, Due 3 March @7pm
Think of writing this research essay as participating in a debate.  You are required to choose one (1) of the following three statements (Topics 1, 2 or 3) and argue either in the affirmative (for) or the negative (against).  In arguing your case you are required to anticipate the response from the alternative argument and counter those arguments in your essay.
The three assignment topics have been finalised, of which you are required to pick one of the following:
 
Topic 1: Is leadership essential to the development of ethical decision making in modern organisations?
 
Topic 2: Which normative theory of ethics is most relevant to modern organisations?
 
Topic 3: In a Trump (post-truth) world, does ethics have role?
 
 

Academic Research (Finding Sources)

 

  1. RMIT Management Library Subject Guide

http://rmit.libguides.com/businessmanagement
This research guide will provide you with starting points for finding information.

 

  • ‘Ask a Librarian’ Service: http://www1.rmit.edu.au/library/askalibrarian
  • Chat, email, or call
  • The Ask a Librarian service is like an online Service Desk for RMIT students. Here you can get help with using Library resources, services and facilities. They will not answer academic questions but they will help you locate good academic resources for your study needs.

 

  1. RMIT iSearch

https://emedia.rmit.edu.au/isearch/
 

iSearch is an online tutorial that can help you improve your research skills.

Explore the tutorial and learn from the videos, activities and handouts that are designed to help you:

  • understand the information search process
  • choose appropriate information resources for your research
  • search and critically evaluate information resources
  • cite references using standard referencing styles.

 
 

  1. Research Peer Reviewed Journals
  • It is essential that you understand how to search for peer-reviewed journals (EBSCO, Proquest, Science Direct, Emerald, Google Scholar etc).
  • Look at the top journals for the area you are studying
  • E&G has suggested Journal of Business Ethics, Business Ethics Quarterly, Business & Society and Corporate Governance in addition to Academy of Management Journal, Academy of Management Review, Journal of Management Studies, Administrative Science Quarterly, etc.

How to Reference

 

  1. Learning Lab on Referencing

https://emedia.rmit.edu.au/learninglab/content/referencing
 

  1. College of business guidelines for referencing: https://www.dlsweb.rmit.edu.au/bus/public/referencing/
  • This link is essential for referencing. It shows you how to do it correctly.

 

What is referencing?

  • Referencing means acknowledging someone else’s work or ideas. It is sometimes called ‘citing’ or ‘documenting’ another person’s work.
  • Referencing is a basic university requirement.
  • It is mandatory for all students to cite or acknowledge information that has come from other sources.
  • Without appropriate referencing students are in effect “stealing” the work of others – this is tantamount to academic fraud.

 
There are consequences if students fail to reference their assignments. These may include:

  • Reduction in marks for assessment tasks.
  • Failure in a course of study.
  • Expulsion from a program.

 

Why do we reference?

  • To draw on the ideas, language, data, and/or facts of others. (You are expected to read and research widely).
  • To provide depth and support to academic work through citation of theories or key writers whose work supports your answer, argument, or contention.
  • To support academic writing, essays, business reports and oral presentations.
  • To demonstrate your ability to synthesise and analyse ideas sourced through your research.
  • To acknowledge work from others that you have quoted, summarised, paraphrased, synthesised, discussed or mentioned in your assignments.
  • To provide a list of the publication details so that your readers can locate the source if necessary.
  • To demonstrate the level and breadth of research undertaken by a student.
  • References used correctly will benefit your work and add to your final grade.

 

Which referencing method do I use?

RMIT Business uses a particular Harvard Style of referencing.

 

  • Harvard is an author-date referencing style widely accepted in scholarly circles. Each reference is indicated in the text by the author and date of the publication cited, sometimes with added information such as page numbers. The full details of these references are listed at the end of the text in a Reference list. Please follow this information given to you by us regarding referencing.

 

When do I reference?

You reference whenever you have used a piece of information that comes from

  • Text books,  Journals, Published papers, (e.g. conference or working paper), Newspapers, Websites, TV/Radio interviews, Personal communication, Others

 
You must cite the origins of the information you are using, whether you have copied the words directly or whether you have paraphrased.
If in doubt—-REFERENCE!
 
 

Common mistakes: in-text referencing

One author in-text paraphrase

Klann (2007) argues that the five personality traits that distinguish a true leader are: bravery, compassion, optimism, self-discipline and the ability to communicate effectively.
or
(b) The five personality traits that distinguish a true leader are: bravery, compassion, optimism, self-discipline and the ability to communicate effectively (Klann 2007).

  • Do not add page numbers or quotation marks when paraphrasing.
  • There is no comma between the author and the year
  • The full stop is placed after the bracket when the citation is at the end of the sentence (See – Example b).

 

Two authors in-text paraphrase

Nordstrum and Vaughan (1999) suggest that in general, as countries become wealthier, they create tougher environmental and labour regulations.
or
(b) In general, as countries become wealthier, they create tougher environmental and labour regulations (Nordstrum & Vaughan 1999).

  • Do NOT add page numbers or quotation marks when paraphrasing.
  • There is no comma between the final author and the year
  • The different uses of ‘&’ and ‘and’ in the examples above.

– ‘and’ is used when the authors’ names are used as part of the sentence (See – Example a).
– ‘&’ is used when the authors’ names are used in the bracketed citation (See – Example b).
 
One author in-text direct quote

  1. a) Roberts (2005, p. 30) when investigating underlying inflation measures in Australia, found that ‘there is no evidence of bias for measures calculated using the distribution of  annual (rather than the quarterly) price changes, or the distribution of seasonally adjusted quarterly price change’.

Or

  1. b) When underlying inflation measures in Australia were investigated, it was found that ‘there is no evidence of bias for measures calculated using the distribution of  annual (rather than the quarterly) price changes, or the distribution of seasonally adjusted quarterly price change’ (Roberts 2005, p. 30).
  • Page number must be included after the date
  • There is no comma between the author and the year
  • Use single inverted commas to indicate the quote
  • The full stop is placed after the bracket when the citation is at the end of the sentence (See – Example b).

 

Two (or three) authors in-text direct quote

(a) Kearns and Manners (2005, p. 21) determined that ‘in general, the results suggest that monetary policy can account for only a small part of the observed volatility in the exchange rate’.
Or
(b) ‘In general, the results suggest that monetary policy can account for only a small part of the observed volatility in the exchange rate’ (Kearns & Manners 2005, p. 21).

  • There is no comma between the author and the year.
  • It is essential to write exactly what is written in the quote.
  • The different uses of ‘and’ and ‘&’ in the examples above:
    ‘and’ is used when the authors’ names are part of the sentence (See – Example a).
    ‘&’ is used when the authors’ names are used in the bracketed citation (See – Example b).
  • the full stop is placed after the bracket when the citation is at the end of the sentence (See – Example b).

 

Four or more authors in-text direct quote

The name of the first author is followed by ‘et al.’
(a) Ng et al. (2004) stated that…
Or
(b)…(Ng et al. 2004).

  • There is a full stop after al.
  • There is no comma between al. and the year, see Example B

Note:  Family names of all authors, and initials, are used in the reference list.
 

Secondary sources: cited in

(a)  Bartlett and Ghoshal (2001, cited in Daft 2004) suggest that companies expanding into global markets, are forced to do so because of economic, technological and competitive factors, which relate to economies of scale, economies of scope and cheaper production factors.
 
(b)  Companies expanding into global markets are forced to do so because of economic, technological and competitive factors, which relate to economies of scale, economies of scope and cheaper production factors (Bartlett & Ghoshal 2001, cited in Daft 2004).

  • Do not add page numbers or quotation marks when paraphrasing.
  • The full stop is placed after the bracket when the citation is at the end of the sentence (See – Example b).
  • The different uses of ‘&’ and ‘and’ in the examples above:
    • ‘and’ is used when the authors’ names are used as part of the sentence (See – Example a).
  • – ‘&’ is used when the authors’ names are used in the bracketed citation (See – Example b).

 
If the secondary source was written by two or three writers the in-text citation will be:
Chan and Wan (1996, cited in McShane & Travaglione 2003) stated that…
Or
…(Chan & Wan 1996, cited in McShane & Travaglione 2003).
 
If the secondary source was written by four or more writers the in-text citation will be:
Amabile et al. (1989, cited in McShane & Travaglione 2003) suggested that…
Or
…(Amabile et al. 1989, cited in McShane & Travaglione 2003).
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Writing an Academic Essay

 
The RMIT Learning Lab is a fantastic resource for helping with Assessment Tasks and Writing Skills:
https://emedia.rmit.edu.au/learninglab/
Example pages from the Learning Lab:

  • Writing Skills:

https://emedia.rmit.edu.au/learninglab/content/writing-skills

  • Essay Writing:

https://emedia.rmit.edu.au/learninglab/content/essay-writing
Within each page there are Study Tip pdfs and excellent Online Tutorials. For example:

  • Essay Structure:

https://emedia.rmit.edu.au/learninglab/content/essay-writing
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Further Advice to Avoid Common Essay Writing Pitfalls

 
Structure

  • Introduction, body, conclusion.
    • Introduction: Context, clear statement of argument (…In this essay I will argue…this essay will argue….), points that will be covered.
    • Body: A series of linked paragraphs, each addressing a key point to develop a clear and logically progressing argument that demonstrates wider reading and draws on supportive evidence. Can contain subheadings if that is what you want to do.
    • Conclusion: Summary of points covered, restatement of argument, other (e.g. bigger picture).
  • Word count. Follow assessment guidelines.

 
Content

  • It is important to demonstrate a grasp of the topic, including key studies, theories, context. However, don’t use up too much space introducing these things; use the majority of the essay to critically engage with the topic.
  • Show evidence of wider reading/research. When introducing evidence provide some descriptive detail – g Smith (2005) studied 400 middle managers in Minnesota and concluded. You then need to relate this evidence/research/theory to answer the overall essay question.  What does each piece of evidence suggest the answer is?
  • Appropriate use of supportive evidence: provide detail and temper language.

For example, NOT:

  • ‘This theory was tested by x and he found it was correct.’
    • Leaves the reader wondering: How was it tested? What did the research involve? How does it relate? Were there any limitations? Etc.
  • Important that argument flows logically/progresses, rather than going back-and-forth.

For example, NOT:

  • ‘This is right although there are some problems but it is mostly correct but there are some things to keep in mind but if you keep these things in mind it is mostly correct, etc….’

 
Style

  • Academic style (document from the Learning Lab):
  • Write clearly. This often means keeping it simple.
  • Link together short, coherent sentences; each with less rather than more information. This is a ‘punchier’ way of writing that is easier to follow.
    • For example: Introduce concept. Then elaborate. Then relate to argument. Then present supportive evidence.
  • Remove filler words and phrases e.g. ‘There can be no doubt that x…’ can become just ‘x…’
  • Show, don’t tell. A good rule to follow for all writing.
  • *No Sweeping statements without context or source material or supportive evidence*
  • Do it. You might like to trade essays with someone else for a final proofread. Spelling and grammar. Plenty not picked up by spell check (e.g. there, their, they’re).

 
Referencing

  • Where possible, see the original source, rather than citing somebody else who used that source it.
  • In-text referencing requires surname(s) and year and, if a quotation, page number only. No initials or first names.
  • Reference list. Follow guidelines.
  • The reference list is only for publications that you have used in your essay.

 
– – – – – –
Effective writing draws on a set of skills. Your skills will improve:

  • With practice.
  • By reading appropriate material, such as quality academic publications which demonstrate academic writing style, structure, and referencing.
  • By drafting your work up before the submission deadline