MBA Oil and Gas Project (Distance Learning and Part Time) Handbook
Part 1: Background & Important Information
Professor David Gray
Aberdeen Business School
The Robert Gordon University
This Consultancy Project guidance has benefited from the input of a number of academics. Thank you.
A copy of this can be found on Campus Moodle.
The MBA project, worth 30 credits, provides the final test of your ability to achieve Masters level status.
The project is a piece of real world applied research, undertaken for a client, which offers you the chance to put into practice leadership and strategic thinking skills developed during the course of your studies.
All projects are strategic in nature and focus on a real, contemporary issue facing an organisation.
MBA projects are designed to enhance career options for all students by developing and enhancing your research, analytical, communication and personal skills at the highest levels of an organisation. The project thus provides a basic grounding in the process and methods which underpin consultancy.
Completing a project requires the collection, analysis, interpretation and presentation of information and observations. It is an orderly and practical exercise for which there are common criteria for evaluation. Students are therefore advised to proceed according to a practical plan in a systematic manner.
Remember a project is NOT a “big essay.” It should be regarded as a proper piece of applied research, undertaken for a client (usually someone within your organisation). If you think of your project as an essay, it will almost certainly be well below what you are capable of producing.
1.2 The difference between a consultancy project and a
There are significant differences between a consultancy project and dissertation: • The project is worth 30 credits, while a dissertation is worth 60. However, students have less time to deliver consultancy project. • The dissertation is a more academic piece of work. There is more emphasis on the literature review and the methodology and justification of research methods and it essentially written for an academic audience. • The project is a piece of relevant applied research produced for a client. The work is therefore more applied in nature, there is less reliance on academic literature (although key theories underpinning the work should be fully acknowledged and references), and the outputs should be written as reports for a client. • Assessment is also slightly different. In the dissertation there are two components, in the project three outputs are assessed; o the inception report
o the final report to the client (which should be accompanied by a presentation to the client and which forms 50% of the assessment) o an individual reflective report on the learning experience. These are discussed in more detail below. • The dissertation is always undertaken as an individual exercise, with a significant input from a supervisor who is an academic subject specialist. • Students can work on the consultancy project in groups (this is the modus operandi for students on the full time MBA course), but it is less common – although not unheard of – for part-time and distance learning students to undertake a collaborative project. • Furthermore, a group project should not be considered an easy option. A four person project is a substantial 120 credit piece of work and will be assessed accordingly. • The reflective report is always an individual exercise and is assessed accordingly (even when students complete the project in a group there should be no intra group collaboration on...