Wittenburg University Case Study
Case Study 2 – Mastering Teacher Leadership Business Research Methods 1
This case presents a situation that is quite common in the education field and addresses the responses by institutions to new legislation imposed upon them. As is often the case, the legislators do not address the impacts to organizations, leaving the actual implementation to the end user (i.e., public and private schools). In this particular case, Wittenburg University (WU) is faced with the decision of whether to develop and deliver a Master of Arts degree in classroom leadership. 1.) Build the management-research question hierarchy for this opportunity. The initial step in the research is the creation of a management-research question hierarchy, to formalize the process. For this case study, the management-research hierarchy is presented in Appendix A. The purpose of this hierarchy is to examine the various stages of the research question and present a logical sequence of increasing focus that will allow the development of a survey instrument that can be delivered to potential program applicants. The initial stage is to identify and state the management dilemma, which in this case is the impending new legislation. The State of Ohio intends to require all licenced teachers to have, or complete, a master’s degree before obtaining their second licensure to teach. Given that this is new legislation and WU is not obligated to offer a program, the “management dilemma” actually presents an opportunity for WU to develop a new degree program, thereby increasing revenue for the university. The second stage of the process is to identify the management questions. In this case, WU needs to decide what purpose would the new program serve?; would this program duplicate teacher development courses?; what format should the new program utilize (e.g., part-time, distance)? The third stage addresses the particular research questions: Does WU have the faculty/administrative capacity to offer the full program?; is there sufficient return on investment to offer the program?; and if all is positive, should WU develop and offer the program. 2
Investigative questions, as part of a survey instrument should examine the demand for the program, what is the potential market, what other competition exists, and what would the program-costing model look like. One other variable that should be explored is the potential of Ohio teachers moving to another state to avoid the legislation. On a similar scale, movement within the policing industry is often impacted by similar factors, so this question should be examined. The final stage of the process is that actual measurement component, whereby researchers will examine the demographic information, correlate and analyze the data collected from the surveys. In order to increase the confidence level of the analysis, survey questions should utilize appropriate ranking/rating scales, and ensure open-ended questions are avoided. Once the data has been analyzed, researchers will be able to provide WU administrators with sufficient information upon which to base a decision on whether to proceed with the program. 2. Evaluate the appropriateness of the exploratory stage of the research design. As noted earlier, the new State of Ohio legislation presents an opportunity for WU to implement a new graduate study program, and increase their enrollments. Before proceeding to the program development stage, however, WU needs to conduct exploratory research to guide their decision making process. An initial step in the process is to conduct secondary research, utilizing available resources, to identify similar programs (i.e., competition) and responses to similar legislation in other states. Given that the majority of this secondary data will be discovered via internet searches, the researchers should conduct a source evaluation. The course text identifies five factors to evaluate secondary data: “Purpose – the explicit...
References: Cooper, D. R., & Schindler, P. S. (2008). Business research methods. New York: McGraw-Hill Irwin. Leedy, P. D., & Ormrod, J. E. (2010). Practical research planning and design. Upper Saddle River, NY: Pearson Education Inc.
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