Undergraduate Research: Critical Thinking in Action Lynn Grinnell, PhD College of Business

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  • Undergraduate Research: Critical Thinking in Action Lynn Grinnell, PhD College of Business
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  • Agenda Background: Why is primary research an awesome way to teach critical thinking? Case study: Market research in Sustainable Business Strategies Activity: Develop an undergraduate research projects
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  • SPCs Critical Thinking Definition CASPER Communication Analysis Synthesis Problem-solving Evaluation Reflection
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  • Mapping SPCs Critical Thinking Definition to Primary Research Projects ResearchCritical Thinking Research the literatureEvaluation Identify a key question in the field Communication Design the studyProblem solving Create/validate instrumentEvaluation Gather data Analyze the dataAnalysis Draw conclusionsReflection Write/presentSynthesis
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  • CASE STUDY Team Project: Market Research on Mass Transit
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  • Prior Research: What works in products Saving money Convenience Perceived quality Personal relationships Technology and innovation Solutions that work, not that sound good From: Convincing the Unconvinced
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  • Prior Research: What works in policy language Independence Personal responsibility Helping people personally Integrity and ethics Stewardship Local solutions Limited, not big, government solutions Concern about Costs Next generation Personal health From: Convincing the Unconvinced
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  • Key Questions If prior research (focus group) shows Participants Agree/Strongly agree: Alternatives to cars Reduce gasoline use Reduce use of natural resources Reduce waste Then why do the affluent not ride mass transit? (e.g., buses) What features/benefits would convince them to ride the bus?
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  • Primary research Questionnaires/surveys One-to-one interviews Telephone interviews Focus groups Blogs Bottom line what sells? Secondary Strategies for the Green Economy EarthJustice market research Convincing the Unconvinced: presentation to Sustainable Florida conference Information from already published sources: Books, journals, papers, libraries, Internet Green Marketing Research: Research Methods From: Green Business Practices for Dummies
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  • Developing Surveys 1.Decide the information required. 2.Define the target respondents. 3.Choose the method(s) of reaching your target respondents. 4.Decide on question content. 5.Develop the question wording. 6.Put questions into a meaningful order and format. 7.Check the length of the questionnaire. 8.Pre-test the questionnaire. 9.Develop the final survey form.
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  • Sampling Practical planning Convenience sampling Targeted demographics At least 10 apiece (minimum 25-30) Discuss proper sampling Sample size Random Stratified (if needed)
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  • Survey Research in MAN 3781 Sustainable Business Strategies Survey developed by: Tara Bennett Dan Deaton Louis Neary Caleb Stallard
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  • Validating Instruments (not done for this study) Content Construct validity Expert validity Reliability Internal consistency Generalizability From multiple locations, random sampling Clarity One-on-one test Small sample Field test
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  • Online Survey Development Zoomerang or Survey Monkey Survey Monkey 10 questions/survey 100 responses/survey Real-time results Collect data via weblink, email, Facebook or embed in blog/website Zoomerang 12 questions/survey 100 responses/survey Real-time, online reports Example: http://www.zoomerang.com/Survey/WEB22D5EM2QKFJ
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  • Analysis: Histograms What does a histogram show? Number of cases in each group along a continuum Example: Amount of paper used Likert scale: Very satisfied to Very dissatisfied Shows the central tendency and variation When do you use it? When you have questions like: How does the number of low users compare with the number of moderate users and high users? Are more people satisfied or dissatisfied? (Is the distribution skewed?) Are most people in a broad range or a narrow range? (How wide is the variation?) Are there one or two that are really out of line? (Are there outliers?)
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  • How do you build a histogram? Use Likert scale for opinion questions Very satisfied to very dissatisfied For continuous variables (e.g., amount of paper used) Determine number of bars to have


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