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Research Methods For Business, Eighth Edition

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  • Edition: 8th
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2019-10-29
  • Publisher: Wiley

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Research Methods For Business, 8th Edition explains the principles and practices of using a systematic, organized method for solving problematic issues in business organizations. Designed to help students view research from the perspective of management, this popular textbook guides students through the entire business research process. Organized into six main themes—Introduction, Defining the Management and the Research Problem, Theory, Collecting Information, Drawing Conclusions, and Writing and Presenting the Research Report—the text enables students to develop the skills and knowledge required to successfully create, conduct, and analyze a research project.

Now in its eighth edition, this popular textbook has been thoroughly updated to incorporate substantial new and expanded content, and reflect current research methods and practices. The text uses a unique blended learning approach, allowing instructors the flexibility to custom-tailor their courses to fit their specific needs. This innovative approach combines the face-to-face classroom methods of the instructor with internet-based activities that enable students to study what they want, when they want, at their own pace.

Table of Contents

About the Authors xxi

Preface xxiii

Acknowledgements xxv

1 Introduction to Research 1

Introduction 1

Types of Business Research: Applied and Basic 4

Managers and Research 7

Internal Versus External Consultants/Researchers 9

Knowledge about Research and Managerial Effectiveness 11

Ethics and Business Research 11

Summary 12

Discussion Questions 13

Case: The Laroche Candy Company 14

Case Questions 15

2 The Scientific Approach and Alternative Approaches to Investigation 16

Introduction 16

The Hallmarks of Scientific Research 17

The Hypothetico-Deductive Method 20

Alternative Approaches to Research 22

A Pragmatic Approach to Research 24

Summary 32

Discussion Questions 32

3 Defining the Management Problem 34

Introduction 34

Looking for Decision Opportunities or Areas for Improvement 35

Fixing Situations that are Broken 37

Providing Feedback to the Client Organization 46

Managerial Implications 46

Summary 47

Discussion Questions 48

Appendix: Background Information on the Organization 49

4 Defining the Research Problem 51

Introduction 51

The Management Problem 51

Defining the Research Problem 51

The Research Proposal 58

Managerial Implications 60

Ethical Issues in the Preliminary Stages of Investigation 61

Summary 62

Discussion Questions 62

5 The Critical Literature Review 64

Introduction 64

How to Approach the Literature Review 66

Ethical Issues 71

Summary 73

Discussion Questions 73

Practice Project 74

Appendix: Some Online Resources Useful for Business Research 75

6 Theoretical Framework and Hypothesis

Development 83

Introduction 83

The Need for a Theoretical Framework 84

Variables 85

How Theory is Generated 92

Hypothesis Development 94

Managerial Implications 100

Summary 100

Discussion Questions 101

Practice Project 102

7 Elements of Research Design 103

Introduction 103

The Research Design 103

Elements of Research Design 104

Mixed Methods 113

Trade-offs and Compromises 114

Managerial Implications 115

Summary 115

Discussion Questions 116

8 Interviews 117

Introduction 117

Primary Data Collection Methods 117

Interviews 118

Advantages and Disadvantages of Interviews 126

Summary 127

Discussion Questions 128

9 Observation 129

Introduction 129

Definition and Purpose of Observation 130

Four Key Dimensions that Characterize the Type of Observation 130

Two Important

Approaches to Observation 132

Advantages and Disadvantages of Observation 139

Summary 141

Discussion Questions 141

10 Administering Questionnaires 143

Introduction 143

Types of Questionnaires 143

Guidelines for Questionnaire Design 146

International Dimensions of Surveys 155

Review of the Advantages and Disadvantages of Different Data Collection Methods and When to Use Each 157

Multimethods of Data Collection 157

Managerial Implications 158

Ethics in Data Collection 158

Summary 159

Discussion Questions 160

11 Experimental Designs 164

Introduction 164

The Lab Experiment 166

The Field Experiment 170

External and Internal Validity in Experiments 170

Types of Experimental Design and Validity 177

Simulation 182

Ethical Issues in Experimental Design Research 182

Managerial Implications 183

Summary 184

Discussion Questions 185

Appendix: Further Experimental Designs 187

12 Measurement of Variables: Operational Definition 190

Introduction 190

How Variables are Measured 190

Operational Definition (Operationalization) 192

International Dimensions of Operationalization 196

Summary 196

Discussion Questions 197

13 Measurement of Variables: Scaling, Reliability and Validity 198

Introduction 198

Four Types of Scales 198

Rating Scales 202

Ranking Scales 207

International Dimensions of Scaling 208

Goodness of Measures 208

Reflective Versus Formative Measurement Scales 212

Summary 213

Discussion Questions 214

Appendix: Examples of Some Measures 216

14 Sampling 221

Introduction 221

Population, Element, Sample, Sampling Unit and Subject 222

Sample Data and Population Values 224

The Sampling Process 225

Probability Sampling 228

Non-Probability Sampling 232

Intermezzo: Examples of When Certain Sampling Designs Would Be Appropriate 236

Issues of Precision and Confidence in Determining Sample Size 241

Sample Data and Hypothesis Testing 244

The Sample Size 246

Sampling as Related to Qualitative Studies 249

Managerial Implications 250

Summary 250

Discussion Questions 252

15 Quantitative Data Analysis 254

Introduction 254

Getting the Data Ready for Analysis 255

Getting a Feel for the Data 260

Excelsior Enterprises: Descriptive Statistics Part 1 269

Testing the Goodness of Measures 270

Excelsior Enterprises: Descriptive Statistics Part 2 273

Summary 276

Discussion Questions 276

16 Quantitative Data Analysis: Hypothesis Testing 279

Introduction 279

Type I Errors, Type II Errors and Statistical Power 279

Choosing the Appropriate Statistical Technique 280

Excelsior Enterprises: Hypothesis Testing 300

Big Data Mining and Operations Research 302

Some Software Packages Useful for Data Analysis 303

Summary 304

Discussion Questions 304

17 Qualitative Data Analysis 307

Introduction 307

Three Important Steps in Qualitative Data Analysis 307

Reliability and Validity in Qualitative Research 319

Some Other Methods of Gathering and Analysing Qualitative Data 320

Big Data 321

Summary 321

Discussion Questions 322

18 Conclusions 323

Introduction 323

Conclusions and Recommendations: Where Your Journey as a Researcher Ends 324

Incorrect or Flawed Forms of Reasoning 332

Summary 334

Discussion Questions 335

19 The Research Report 337

Introduction 337

The Written Report 337

Contents of the Research Report 340

Oral Presentation 346

Summary 349

Discussion Questions 349

Appendix: Examples 350

Report 1: Sample of a Report Involving a Descriptive Study 350

Report 2: Sample of a Report offering Alternative Solutions and Explaining the Pros and Cons of Each

Alternative 353

Report 3: Example of an Abridged Basic Research Report 355

A Final Note to Students 359

Statistical Tables 361

Glossary 371

Bibliography 381

Index 389

Supplemental Materials

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The New copy of this book will include any supplemental materials advertised. Please check the title of the book to determine if it should include any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.

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