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Business Research Methods

Dr. T. Vetrivel, Dr. P. Priyadarsini and Dr. C. Meera

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AUC/MBA/2/02

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MBA, Second Semester,  Anna University Chennai 
Syllabus
 
BUSINESS RESEARCH METHODS
 
Unit 1: Introduction                                                                                                                                       (9)
Business Research – Definition and Significance – The Research Process – Types of Research – Exploratory and Causal Research – Theoretical and Empirical Research – Cross –Sectional and time – Series Research – Research questions/Problems – Research Objectives – Research Hypotheses – Characteristics – Research in an Evolutionary Perspective – the Role of Theory in Research.
 
Unit 2: Research Design and Measurement                                                                                           (9)
Research design – Definition – types of Research Design – Exploratory and Causal Research Design – Descriptive and Experimental Design – Different Types of Experimental Design – Validity of Findings – Internal and External Validity – Variables in Research – Measurement and Scaling – Different Scales – Construction of Instrument – Validity and Reliability of Instrument.
 
Unit 3: Data Collection                                                                                                                                   (9)
Types of Data – Primary versus Secondary Data – Methods of Primary Data Collection – Survey versus Observation – Experiments – Construction of Questionaire and Instrument – Validation of Questionaire – Sampling Plan – Sample Size – Determinants Optimal Sample Size – sampling Techniques – Probability versus Non-Probability Sampling Methods.
 
Unit 4: Data Preparation and Analysis                                                                                                   (9)
Data Preparation – Editing – Coding – Data Entry – Validity of Data – Qualitative versus Quantitative Data Analyses – Bivariate and Multivariate Statistical Techniques – Factor Analysis – Discriminant Analysis – Cluster Analysis – Multiple Regression and Correlation – Multi-dimensional Scaling – Application of Statistical Software for Data Analysis.
 
Unit 5: Report Design, Writing and Ethics in Business Research                                                (9)
Research Report – Different Types – Contents of Report – Need of Executive Summary – Chapterization – Contents of Chapter – Report Writing – The Role of Audience – Readability – Comprehension – Tone – Final Proof – Report Format – Title of the Report – Ethics in Research – Ethical Behavior of Research – Subjectivity and Objectivity in Research.
Unit 1: Introduction to Business Research
1.1.          Research
11
1.1.1.       Meaning and Definition of Research
11
1.1.2.       Features of Good Research
11
1.1.3.       Objectives of Research
12
1.1.4.       Research Process
13
1.1.5.       Scope of Research
15
1.1.6.       Research Approach
17
1.1.6.1.    Quantitative Research
17
1.1.6.2.    Qualitative Research
18
1.1.6.3.    Qualitative versus Quantitative Data Analysis
20
1.1.7.       Significance of Research
20
1.1.8.       Limitations of Research
21
1.1.9.       Research in an Evolutionary Perspective
21
1.2.          Business Research
22
1.2.1.       Meaning and Definition of Business Research
22
1.2.2.       Objectives of Business Research
23
1.2.3.       Types of Business Research
23
1.2.4.       Applications of Business Research
24
1.2.5.       Significance of Business Research
25
1.2.6.       Limitations of Business Research
26
1.3.          Types of Research
27
1.3.1.       Introduction
27
1.3.2.       On the Basis of Application
27
1.3.2.1.    Pure Research
27
1.3.2.2.    Applied Research
28
1.3.3.       On the Basis of Objective
28
1.3.3.1.    Exploratory Research
28
1.3.3.2.    Descriptive Research
29
1.3.3.3.    Causal Research
30
1.3.4.       On the Basis of Extent of Theory
31
1.3.4.1.    Theoretical Research
31
1.3.4.2.    Empirical Research
31
1.3.5.       On the Basis of Time Dimension
32
1.3.5.1.    Cross-Sectional Research
32
1.3.5.2.    Time-Series Research
33
1.3.5.3.    Panel Study
33
1.3.5.4.    Cohort Study
34
1.4.          Research Questions/Problems
34
1.4.1.       Introduction
34
1.4.2.       Components of Research Problem
35
1.4.3.       Precautions in Identifying Research Problem
35
1.4.4.       Selecting the Problem
35
1.4.5.       Defining Research Problem
36
1.4.5.1.    Nature of Problem Definition
36
1.4.5.2.    Process of Problem Definition
37
1.4.5.3.    Necessity of Defined Problem
38
1.5.          Research Objectives
38
1.5.1.       Introduction
38
1.5.2.       Framing Research Objectives
38
1.5.3.       Types of Research Objectives
39
1.6.          Research Hypotheses
39
1.6.1.       Meaning and Definition of Hypotheses
39
1.6.2.       Characteristics of Hypothesis
40
1.6.3.       Sources of Hypothesis
40
1.6.4.       Importance of Hypothesis
41
1.6.5.       Types of Hypothesis
41
1.7.          Theory and Research
42
1.7.1.       Meaning of Theory
42
1.7.2.       Role of Theory in Research
43
1.7.3.       Components of Theory
43
1.7.4.       Theory Generation
44
1.8.          Literature Review in Research
46
1.8.1.       Introduction
46
1.8.2.       Purpose of Literature Review
46
1.8.3.       Process of Literature Review
46
1.8.4.       Factors Influencing Writing Literature Review
47
1.8.5.       Importance of Literature Review
47
1.9.          Exercise
48
 
 
Unit 2: Research Design & Measurement
2.1.          Research Design
49
2.1.1.       Meaning and Definition of Research Design
49
2.1.2.       Features of Good Research Design
49
2.1.3.       Need of Research Design
50
2.1.4.       Factors Affecting Research Design
51
2.1.5.       Requirements for Good Research Design
52
2.1.6.       Research Design Process
52
2.1.7.       Types of Research Designs
53
2.2.          Exploratory Research Design
53
2.2.1.       Introduction
53
2.2.2.       Objectives of Exploratory Research Design
54
2.2.3.       Suitability of Exploratory Research Design
54
2.2.4.       Techniques of Exploratory Research Design
54
2.2.5.       Applications of Exploratory Research
55
2.2.6.       Significance of Exploratory Research Design
56
2.2.7.       Limitations of Exploratory Research Design
57
2.3.          Descriptive Research Design
57
2.3.1.       Introduction
57
2.3.2.       Objectives of Descriptive Research Design
57
2.3.3.       Techniques of Descriptive Research Design
58
2.3.4.       Applications of Descriptive Research
58
2.3.5.       Significance of Descriptive Research
59
2.3.6.       Limitations of Descriptive Research
59
2.4.          Causal or Experimental Research Design
60
2.4.1.       Introduction
60
2.4.2.       Basic Principles of Experimental Designs
60
2.4.3.       Causality in Experimental Research Design
61
2.4.4.       Types of Experimental Research Design
61
2.4.4.1.    Pre-Experimental Designs
62
2.4.4.2.    True Experimental Designs
63
2.4.4.3.    Quasi- Experimental Design
63
2.4.4.4.    Statistical Designs
64
2.4.5.       Validity of Findings
64
2.4.5.1.    Internal Validity
65
2.4.5.2.    External Validity
66
2.4.5.3.    Controlling Extraneous Variables
67
2.4.5.4.    Trade-offs between Internal and External Validity
67
2.4.6.       Applications of Experimental Research Designs
68
2.4.7.       Significance of Experimental Research
68
2.4.8.       Limitations of Experimental Research
69
2.5.          Variables in Research
69
2.5.1.       Introduction
69
2.5.2.       Dependent and Independent Variables
70
2.5.3.       Experimental and Measured Variables
70
2.5.4.       Qualitative and Quantitative Variables
70
2.5.5.       Categorical and Numerical Variables
70
2.6.          Measurement and Scaling
70
2.6.1.       Meaning and Definition of Measurement
70
2.6.2.       Functions of Measurement
71
2.6.3.       Measurement Process
71
2.6.4.       Measurement Techniques
72
2.6.5.       Different Types of Measurement Scales
73
2.6.6.       Scaling
76
2.6.6.1.    Scaling Techniques
76
2.6.6.2.    Process of Scaling
81
2.6.7.       Construction of Instrument
82
2.6.8.       Scale Evaluation Criteria
84
2.6.8.1.    Validity of Instruments
84
2.6.8.2.    Reliability of Instruments
85
2.6.8.3.    Practicality of Instruments
89
2.6.8.4.    Sensitivity of Instruments
89
2.6.8.5.    Generalisability of Instruments
90
2.6.9.       Difficulties in Measurement
90
2.6.10.     Measurement Error
91
2.6.11.     Criteria for Good Measurement
91
2.7.          Exercise
92
 
 
Unit 3: Data Collection & Sampling
 
3.1.          Data Collection
93
3.1.1.       Introduction
93
3.1.2.       Types of Data
93
3.1.3.       Primary Data versus Secondary Data
94
3.2.          Primary Data
94
3.2.1.       Introduction
94
3.2.2.       Significance of Primary Data
94
3.2.3.       Limitations of Primary Data
95
3.2.4.       Methods of Primary Data Collection
96
3.3.          Observation
97
3.3.1.       Introduction
97
3.3.2.       Methods of Observation
97
3.3.3.       Significance of Observation
98
3.3.4.       Limitations of Observation
98
3.4.          Survey Method
99
3.4.1.       Introduction
99
3.4.2.       Nature of Survey Method
99
3.4.3.       Survey versus Observation Method
100
3.4.4.       Types of Survey
100
3.4.5.       Survey Techniques
102
3.4.6.       Interview
102
3.4.6.1.    Types of Interview
102
3.4.6.2.    Significance of Interview
103
3.4.6.3.    Limitations of Interview
104
3.4.7.       Questionnaire
104
3.4.7.1.    Construction of Questionnaire and Instrument
104
3.4.7.2.    Guidelines for Questionnaire Construction
107
3.4.7.3.    Validation of Questionnaire
108
3.4.7.4.    Types of Questionnaire
108
3.4.7.5.    Significance of Questionnaire
109
3.4.7.6.    Limitations of Questionnaire
109
3.4.8.       Schedules
110
3.4.8.1.    Types of Schedule
110
3.4.8.2.    Significance of Schedule
110
3.4.8.3.    Limitations of Schedule
111
3.4.8.4.    Difference between Questionnaire and Schedule
111
3.5.          Experiments
112
3.5.1.       Introduction
112
3.5.2.       Steps in Conducting Experiments
112
3.5.3.       Significance of Experiments
113
3.5.4.       Limitations of Experiments
114
3.6.          Secondary Data
114
3.6.1.       Introduction
114
3.6.2.       Secondary Data Collection Methods
114
3.6.3.       Significance of Secondary Data
116
3.6.4.       Limitations of Secondary Data
117
3.7.          Sampling
117
3.7.1.       Meaning of Sampling
117
3.7.2.       Fundamental Definitions
118
3.7.3.       Census and Sample Surveys
119
3.7.4.       Census versus Sample
119
3.7.5.       Sampling Plan
120
3.7.6.       Advantages of Sampling
121
3.7.7.       Disadvantages of Sampling
122
3.7.8.       Sampling Errors
122
3.7.8.1.    Causes for Sampling Errors
122
3.7.8.2.    Types of Sampling Errors
123
3.7.8.3.    Preventing Sampling Errors
123
3.8.          Sample Size
123
3.8.1.       Introduction
123
3.8.2.       Determinants of Sample Size
123
3.8.3.       Determination of Optimal Sample Size
124
3.8.3.1.    Determination of Sample Size (n) when Estimating the Population Mean
124
3.8.3.2.    Determining Sample Size (n) When Estimating the Population Proportion
126
3.9.          Sampling Techniques
127
3.9.1.       Introduction
127
3.9.2.       Probability Sampling
127
3.9.2.1.    Types of Probability Sampling
127
3.9.2.2.    Advantages of Probability Sampling
129
3.9.2.3.    Disadvantages of Probability Sampling
129
3.9.3.       Non- Probability Sampling
129
3.9.3.1.    Types of Non- Probability Sampling
129
3.9.3.2.    Advantages of Non- Probability Sampling
130
3.9.3.3.    Disadvantages of Non- Probability Sampling
130
3.9.4.       Probability Sampling versus Non- Probability Sampling
130
3.10.        Exercise
131
 
 
Unit 4: Data Preparation & Analysis
4.1.          Data Processing and Preparation
132
4.1.1.       Introduction
132
4.1.2.       Importance of Data Processing
132
4.1.3.       Processing Operations of Data
133
4.1.3.1.    Validity of Data
133
4.1.3.2.    Editing of Data
134
4.1.3.3.    Coding of Data
135
4.1.3.4.    Classification of Data
137
4.1.3.5.    Data Entry
138
4.1.3.6.    Tabulation of Data
139
4.1.4.       Problems in Data Processing
141
4.2.          Data Analysis
142
4.2.1.       Introduction
142
4.2.2.       Objectives of Data Analysis
142
4.2.3.       Phases in Data Analysis
143
4.2.4.       Data Analysis Techniques
143
4.2.5.       Types of Data Analysis
144
4.2.5.1.    Qualitative Data Analysis
144
4.2.5.2.    Quantitative Data Analysis
145
4.2.5.3.    Qualitative versus Quantitative Data Analysis
145
4.3.          Bivariate Analysis
146
4.3.1.       Introduction
146
4.3.2.       Bivariate Statistical Techniques
146
4.3.2.1.    Linear Correlation
146
4.3.2.2.    Simple Regression
149
4.3.2.3.    Two – WayANOVA
150
4.4.          Multivariate Analysis
150
4.4.1.       Introduction
150
4.4.2.       Uses of Multivariate Analysis
150
4.4.3.       Multivariate Statistical Techniques
151
4.5.          Factor Analysis
152
4.5.1.       Concept of Factor Analysis
152
4.5.2.       Objectives of Factor Analysis
152
4.5.3.       Statistics Associated with Factor Analysis
152
4.5.4.       Procedure of Factor Analysis
153
4.5.7.       Type of Factor Analysis
155
4.5.8.       Applications of Factor Analysis
155
4.6.          Discriminant Analysis
156
4.6.1.       Introduction
156
4.6.2.       Objectives of Discriminant Analysis
156
4.6.3.       Steps in Discriminant Analysis
156
4.6.4.       Applications of Discriminant Analysis
158
4.7.          Cluster Analysis
158
4.7.1.       Concept of Cluster analysis
158
4.7.2.       Objectives of Cluster Analysis
158
4.7.3.       Statistics Associated With Cluster Analysis
159
4.7.4.       Procedure of Conducting Cluster Analysis
159
4.7.5.       Applications of Cluster Analysis
162
4.8.          Multiple Regression and Correlation
162
4.8.1.       Introduction
162
4.8.2.       Multiple Regression Analysis
163
4.8.2.1.    Assumptions of Multiple Regression Analysis
163
4.8.2.2.    Steps in Multiple Regression
163
4.8.2.3.    Methods of Calculation
164
4.8.3.       Multiple Correlation Analysis
166
4.8.3.1.    Properties of Multiple Correlation
166
4.8.3.2.    Methods of Calculation
166
4.9.          Multi-Dimensional Scaling (MDS)
168
4.9.1.       Concept of Multi-Dimensional Scaling (MDS)
168
4.9.2.       Objectives of MDS
168
4.9.3.       Statistics and Terms Associated with MDS
169
4.9.4.       Steps in Multi-Dimensional Scaling
169
4.9.5.       Use of MDS
170
4.10.        Application of Statistical Software for Data Analysis
171
4.10.1.     Introduction
171
4.10.2.     SPSS
171
4.10.3.     SAS/STAT
172
4.10.4.     STATA
173
4.11.        Exercise
174
 
 
Unit 5: Report Design, Writing & Ethics in Business Research
5.1.          Research Report
175
5.1.1.       Meaning of Research Report
175
5.1.2.       Characteristics of Research Report
175
5.1.3.       Different Types of Research Report
176
5.1.4.       Formulation of Research Report
177
5.1.5.       Contents of Research Reports
178
5.1.6.       Significance of Report Writing
180
5.2.          Research Report Format
180
5.2.1.       Introduction
180
5.2.2.       Title of the Report
180
5.2.3.       Table of Contents and Chapterisation
181
5.2.4.       Contents of Chapter
182
5.2.5.       Executive Summary
183
5.2.5.1.    Need of Executive Summary
183
5.2.5.2.    Writing Executive Summary
183
5.2.5.3.    Tips for Effective Executive Summary
184
5.2.6.       Introduction to Report
184
5.2.7.       Statement of Objectives
184
5.2.8.       Methodology
185
5.2.9.       Limitations
185
5.2.10.     Findings
186
5.2.11.     Conclusions and Recommendations
186
5.2.12.     Appendix
186
5.3.          Report Writing
187
5.3.1.       Introduction
187
5.3.2.       Pre-Writing Concerns
188
5.3.3.       Writing the Draft
189
5.3.3.1.    Role of Audience
189
5.3.3.2.    Readability
191
5.3.3.3.    Comprehension
191
5.3.3.4.    Tone
191
5.3.3.5.    Final Proof
192
5.3.4.       Presentation Considerations
192
5.3.5.       Mechanics of Writing a Research Report
193
5.3.6.       Precautions in Preparing Research Report
195
5.4.          Ethics in Research
196
5.4.1.       Introduction
196
5.4.2.       Principles of Ethical Research
197
5.4.3.       Ethical Behaviour of Research
198
5.4.3.1.    Sugging and Frugging
198
5.4.3.2.    Research Integrity
198
5.4.3.3.    Treating Others Fairly
199
5.4.4.       Subjectivity in Research
201
5.4.5.       Objectivity in Research
202
5.5.          Exercise
203
 
 
Question Paper – June 2010
205
Solved Paper – June 2011
206
Solved Paper – May/June 2012
216
Unit-Wise Classification
227

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Business Research Methods

Business Research Methods

Dr. T. Vetrivel, Dr. P. Priyadarsini and Dr. C. Meera

Write your review