Explain what is considered acceptable or unacceptable behavior in a particular workplace, and why.

Topic 1: Power and Politics at Work “Telecommuters around the world face a dilemma: in their quest to escape from organisational politics, they unwittingly become its victims … No-one escapes from organisational power and politics.” (McShane & Travaglione 2005 p 224). Power and politics exist in every group and consequently are at every level of organisational life. In fact politics may be simply power in action. McShane, S., and Travaglione, T., (2005). Organisational Behaviour on the Rim.Boston: Irwin McGraw Hill. In line with a particular model or theory of power and politics in the workplace, you could conduct one or two interviews (perhaps with a manager and a staff member), comparing the two perceptions of office politics and power tactics. Alternatively, you might explore corporate ethics – what is considered acceptable or unacceptable behaviour in a particular workplace, and why.

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Assessment 3 – Research Report Guidelines


Give a simple but explanatory title. (eg, “Commonly found habitats for frogs with edible legs”.


150 words maximum.
Must communicate the significance of your study so that readers can decide if your study is relevant to their work and to help give them a quick overview of what you did.
Write the abstract last.
Summary of report abstract includes:
Research aim and rationale (1 or 2 sentences).
Method (1 to 3 sentences).
Main results (1 or 2 sentences).
Implications of results (1 or 2 sentences).
Avoid references in this section.
Ask yourself:

Can the reader figure out why you did the interview(s), what you did, what you found, and what you conclude?


Approx 500 words
Don’t label this section “Introduction”.
Presents the rationale for your interview(s): proceed from general to specific.
First paragraph gives a general introduction and context to the study and includes a GENERAL aim (not the specific hypotheses).
Next paragraphs review relevant literature (relevant theories, past research).
Relate aims of study to this background literature.
Integrate theory and experimental evidence to build rationale.
Keep focus clearly on literature directly related to your interview(s).
If study focuses on several issues, present in the same order in introduction, results and discussion.
State each specific hypothesis directly following the appropriate literature/argument.
Ask yourself:

Can the reader identify why you are doing the interview(s) and what the aims are?

Do your hypotheses ogically “fall out” of your rationale?


Approx 300 words
Reports how you did the interview(s). Provides sufficient information to enable a reader to replicate the study.
Major sections:

Describe basic characteristics of the interviewee(s) (eg, gender, age, ethnicity, occupation). DO NOT USE THE PERSON’S REAL NAME – REMEMBER CONFIDENTIALITY.

Describe overall strategy adopted.
Describe the questions used in your interview(s). MAKE SURE AN ADEQUATE SUMMARY OF THE INTERVIEW(S) IS IN THE APPENDIX.

Describe exactly how the data was collected and how long it took for the participant to answer your questions.
Ask yourself:

Would someone reading this have a fairly accurate picture of what we did without referring to the questionnaire?


Approx 300 words
Reports exactly what your interviewee(s) found with respect to your research questions and hypotheses.
Do not discuss or interpret findings in results section.
Present and describe basic information.
State whether your hypotheses are supported or not (eg, “the hypothesis that most frogs live in the sea was not supported as most of the frogs collected came from inland ponds”).
Deal with hypotheses in the same order as presented in the introduction.
Ask yourself:

Is the information presented clearly enough for the reader to form an accurate picture of the findings?


Approx 500 words
Interpretation of findings and statement of conclusions.
Move from the specific to the general.
First, restate hypotheses, summarise important findings (don’t give every detail again) and whether hypotheses were supported or not.
Relate findings back to the previous research and theory reviewed in the introduction. (eg, do the results support other people’s findings, fit with existing theories. Make sure this is NOT a rehash of the introduction.)
Don’t introduce a lot of new literature into the discussion – it should be in the introduction.
If relevant, try to explain any discrepancies (why are your results different to other people’s findings, or theories?)
Discuss implications of the findings in terms of theory, research, and real-world situations. (eg, Blogg’s theory that frogs are found mainly in the sea will have to be either expanded to include frogs living in ponds or re-examined to see if future studies need to concentrate on ponds rather than the sea. French cooks might need to hunt frogs in ponds in preference to the sea.)
Highlight any methodological limitations (briefly and in a positive light). How far can your findings be generalised (eg, to the which population? Workers in certain occupations? etc). Remember that one way to turn limitations around is to include suggested improvements as “the next study”. DON’T PUT YOUR STUDY DOWN – YOU WANT TO PUBLISH IT!
Provide explicit directions for future research.
Ask yourself:

Have you adequately presented the key findings and addressed them in the light of the aims and rationale for this piece of research?


You must give a list of all references cited in the report.
There should be at least 5 references primarily peer reviewed journal articles from the library journal database.
This is not a bibliography, so it only includes those references you actually cite. Do not use footnotes.
The list is alphabetical by the author’s family (sur) name.
Remember that it is okay to use the work of as many authors as you want, but you must cite where you found your source, otherwise you will be guilty of plagiarism.
Listing references – some examples:
Journal article

Leung, K. & Bond, M. (1989). On the empirical identification of dimensions of cross-cultural comparisons. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 20(2), 133-151.


Ting-Toomey, S. (1999). Communicating across cultures. New York: The Guildford Press.

Book Chapter

Chang, H. & Holt, G. R. (1994). A Chinese perspective on face as inter-relational concern. In S. Ting-Toomey (Ed.), The challenge of facework. State University New York Press.


Some examples of citing in the text are:

Paraphrasing or giving a summary of someone’s work or theory you might say:
Bloggs (1992) made the point that…

Bloggs and Smith (1996) also found that…

Another way to do this is not to include the author/s name/s as part of the sentence but place them in parentheses:
Ancient sea beds have shown traces of frog fossils (Bloggs & Brainy, 1986).

Using a secondary source from someone else’s work or using someone else’s summary of an author’s work you might say:
Bloggs’ extensive work in the area of frogs’ habitats has been summarised by Rockman (1998) who reports……

Bloggs, (cited by Rockman, 1998) found……

If there are two or more authors, use ‘et al.’ after the first complete citing:
Bloggs et al. (1991) showed that…

Use quotations as sparingly as possible. Too much quoting will lose you marks as the marker will think you don’t understand what you are reading. Only quote when the phrase is well-known, witty, uses jargon specific to that author, or you want to emphasise something which you have already explained. When quoting you must include the page number:
Bloggs said, “The simian mode is the terser of the two” (1984: 234).


Bloggs said, “The simian mode is the terser of the two” (1984, p.234).


Bloggs (1984) said, “The simian mode is the terser of the two” (p.234).

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