Bmgt 808r: Research Methods Syllabus

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University of Maryland – College Park Robert H. Smith School of Business

BMGT 808R: Research Methods Fall 2012
Instructors: Dr. Brent Goldfarb Associate Professor of Management & Entrepreneurship 4548 Van Munching Hall 301-405-9672 bgoldfarb@rhsmith.umd.edu

Dr. Rebecca Hamilton Associate Professor of Marketing 3456 Van Munching Hall 301-405-8270 rhamilto@rhsmith.umd.edu

Dr. Henry Lucas Smith Professor of Information Systems 4341 Van Munching Hall 301-405-0100 hlucas@rhsmith.umd.edu

Class Schedule: We will meet on Mondays from 1:00 to 3:40pm in VMH 3330H. Course Description: The purpose of this course is to introduce doctoral students to the philosophy of science and methods for conducting business research. Many business disciplines follow social science research paradigms that include surveys, case studies, qualitative studies, experiments and the analysis of secondary data sources. This course is appropriate for all doctoral students who want to develop a basic understanding of these fundamental business research techniques and when it is appropriate to use them. The major methodology that the course will not include is analytic modeling, which draws on microeconomic theory. Three faculty members representing different Smith School disciplines (information systems, marketing, management and organizational behavior) will guide the seminar. Given time constraints, we will be able to provide an introduction and overview of each topic; to conduct research using one of these methodologies the researcher will have to go into more depth on the chosen approach. Upon completing the course the student should be able to make an informed choice of the most appropriate methodology to be used to explore a given research question. The course is designed to be interactive and hands-on. As part of the course, students will develop a research proposal examining a topic they feel is interesting and relevant to their own discipline. Students will present their research ideas and proposed methods for studying them several times during the course, and will receive feedback from other students as well as the instructors.

Course Topics: 1. Introduction and Philosophy of Research September 10 (HL)  Thomas S. Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions  James D. Watson, The Double Helix  Kilduff, M., A. Mehra, and M. B. Dunn, “From Blue Sky Research to Problem Solving: A Philosophy of Science Theory of New Knowledge Production,” Academy of Management Review¸ 36, (2011), pp. 297-317.  Weber, Ron, “The Problem of the Problem,” MISQ, Vol. 27, No. 1 (March 2003), pp. iiiix.  Peters, D. and S. Ceci, 1982, “Peer-review practices of psychological journals: The fate of published articles, submitted again,” Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 5, 187-255

2. Formulating the Research Question September 17 (HL)  Richard L. Daft, “Learning the Craft of Organizational Research”, Academy of Management Review, Vol. 8(4), 1983, pg. 539-546.  Murray S. Davis, “That’s Interesting!” Philosophy of the Social Sciences, Vol. 1, 1971, pg. 309-344 (also at http://www.mang.canterbury.ac.nz/courseinfo/AcademicWriting/Interesting.htm).  Karl E. Weick, “Theory Construction as Disciplined Imagination”, Academy of Management Review, Vol. 14(4), 1989, pg. 516-531.  Schwab, A. E. Abrahamson, W. Starbuck and F. Fidler, “Researchers Should Make Thoughtful Assessments Instead of Null-Hypothesis Significance Tests” Organization Science, Articles in Advance, pp. 1-15.  Lin, M., H. C. Lucas, Jr. and G. Shmueli,” Is More Always Better? Larger Samples and False Discoveries,” Smith School of Business working paper  Vodanovich, S., D. Sundaram, and M. Myers,” Digital Natives and Ubiquitous Information Systems,” Information Systems Research. Vol. 21, No. 4 (December 2010), pp. 711-723

3. A Look at Several Empirical Methods: Surveys, Case study, Qualitative and Inductive Research September 24 (HL)  Judd, Smith & Kidder, Research Methods in Social Relations,...
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