MPA625 M8D1: Significance & Limitations Part 1

MPA625 M8D1: Significance & Limitations Part 1
Each Part has to have at least 500 words
Use question/ Answer format
In this activity, you will discuss how to deal with issues concerning statistical significance and limitations in your findings.
You have completed your presentation of your findings and an individual identifies a legitimate limitation that you have overlooked.
Based on the above background, respond to the following:
What is the best response in this scenario?
Does this compromise the validity of your study as a whole?

M8D2: Formatting Considerations Part 2
Each Part has to have at least 500 words
Use question/ Answer format
In this activity, you will discuss the appropriate formatting requirements for your final product.
Respond to the following:
How does your audience impact the formatting of your final product?
Compare and contrast how you would format your final product for a journal publication to how you would format your final product for a stakeholder meeting.

Leedy, P. D., & Ormrod, J. E. (2010). Practical research: Planning and design, 2010 custom edition (9th ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson.
Chapter 12: Technical Details: Style, Format, and Organization of the Research Report
Trochim, W. M. K. (2006). Write up (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.. Research Methods Knowledge Base. Retrieved from
Module 8: Module Notes: Organizing the Final Product
If you have ever attended a Science Fair, you know that the final product is presented using a poster board and an oral presentation. This is actually very similar to how you will present your final product in the workplace. Instead of a poster board, you will likely use PowerPoint (or something like it) that includes Excel graphs of your findings to support your position.
Prior to your presentation, you will likely develop a full report of your findings which will include:

At the beginning of this report, you should include an Executive Summary, which is a summary of your full report. The ultimate purpose of the Executive Summary is to provide a quick overview of the full report, using the same main headings. It is generally one to two pages, depending on the length of the report. As you may be asked to provide all stakeholders a copy of your report and because it may also be public information, it is important that the final document is well organized, accurate, and visually appealing.
Notes: Integrity & Accuracy
Although the people in your meeting are unlikely to question the nuances of your statistical analyses, it is highly possible that individuals will be able to sense inaccuracies and identify gaps in the analysis. Therefore, it is important to identify potential biases in the report. This is known as reflexivity. No analysis will be totally unbiased and people are aware of this. Rather than falling prey to negative feedback, address these biases first. Then, explain to your audience how you chose to deal with the biases, and why you made those choices, as well as the outcomes.
It is also likely that people will assess your credibility based on the mechanics and writing in the final report. The final report should be free of writing and mechanical errors. Moreover, it should not contain plagiarized information. Remember, these individuals are experts in their field. If published information on a subject in their discipline exists and they are faced with an important decision, they have probably read that information. It is not recommended to avoid using this information. Including the material to support or contest your argument improves the integrity of your findings. It shows that you have given consideration to other expert opinions. Show that you value these opinions by giving credit where credit is due. In the MPA program, this is done using the APA formatting style. However, depending on your workplace, other formatting techniques may be required.
Finally, be sure to include any data that may be useful for interpreting the final report. This information should be included in the Appendix. Survey questions, explanations of the methodology used, and any required permits to execute the study are often included in the Appendix.
Oral presentation and PowerPoint Summary
Once you have thoroughly reviewed your finished product, you should begin to work on your oral presentation. A PowerPoint summary will probably suffice. This document should be free of mechanical and writing errors as well and in addition, should be visually appealing.
Given below are a few tips to ensure you create an effective PowerPoint presentation.

Select each tab to learn more.
Details on Screen
Minimize the detail that you place on each slide. If you put paragraphs on a slide, the audience will read the slides, meaning they will not be listening to your explanation. Include your notes about the slide on your personal copy using the speaker’s notes area.
Space and Color
Make good use of space and color. Again, the PowerPoint should be visibly appealing. If there is too much or too little color, people may quickly lose interest or become distracted.
Visual Representations
Include visual representations of your data to meet the needs of everyone in the audience.
Copy of the Presentation
Provide your audience with a handout or a copy of the presentation as well. If you choose to provide a copy of the presentation, print copies with the notes section. Encourage your audience to take notes and/or write down their questions for discussion.
Tone of the Presentation
Set the tone of the presentation early. If necessary, address “housekeeping” concerns such as restroom locations, the duration of the presentation, and whether you would like to address questions as you go or hold them to the end of the presentation.
Audience Engagement
When speaking, be sure to pause from time to time to ensure that information can be processed. Monitor the room for engagement and address your audience accordingly.
Last but not least, maintain your professionalism. It is important to have fun and be personable but do so while being objective and proficient.
Final Words
Even if people agree with your findings, they may find reasons to question your credibility based on how you present the data. Even though this is perhaps the easiest part of the entire process, communicating your findings properly is just as important as the analysis.

So now that you’ve completed the research project, what do you do? I know you won’t want to hear this, but your work is still far from done. In fact, this final stage — writing up your research — may be one of the most difficult. Developing a good, effective and concise report is an art form in itself. And, in many research projects you will need to write multiple reports that present the results at different levels of detail for different audiences.
There are several general considerations to keep in mind when generating a report:
The Audience

Who is going to read the report? Reports will differ considerably depending on whether the audience will want or require technical detail, whether they are looking for a summary of results, or whether they are about to examine your research in a Ph.D. exam.
The Story

I believe that every research project has at least one major “story” in it. Sometimes the story centers around a specific research finding. Sometimes it is based on a methodological problem or challenge. When you write your report, you should attempt to tell the “story” to your reader. Even in very formal journal articles where you will be required to be concise and detailed at the same time, a good “storyline” can help make an otherwise very dull report interesting to the reader.

The hardest part of telling the story in your research is finding the story in the first place. Usually when you come to writing up your research you have been steeped in the details for weeks or months (and sometimes even for years). You’ve been worrying about sampling response, struggling with operationalizing your measures, dealing with the details of design, and wrestling with the data analysis. You’re a bit like the ostrich that has its head in the sand. To find the story in your research, you have to pull your head out of the sand and look at the big picture. You have to try to view your research from your audience’s perspective. You may have to let go of some of the details that you obsessed so much about and leave them out of the write up or bury them in technical appendices or tables.
Formatting Considerations

Are you writing a research report that you will submit for publication in a journal? If so, you should be aware that every journal requires articles that you follow specific formatting guidelines. Thinking of writing a book. Again, every publisher will require specific formatting. Writing a term paper? Most faculty will require that you follow specific guidelines. Doing your thesis or dissertation? Every university I know of has very strict policies about formatting and style. There are legendary stories that circulate among graduate students about the dissertation that was rejected because the page margins were a quarter inch off or the figures weren’t labeled correctly.
To illustrate what a set of research report specifications might include, I present in this section general guidelines for the formatting of a research write-up for a class term paper. These guidelines are very similar to the types of specifications you might be required to follow for a journal article. However, you need to check the specific formatting guidelines for the report you are writing — the ones presented here are likely to differ in some ways from any other guidelines that may be required in other contexts.
I’ve also included a sample research paper write-up that illustrates these guidelines. This sample paper is for a “make-believe” research project. But it illustrates how a final research report might look using the guidelines given here.
Trochim, W. M. K. (2006). Write up (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.. Research Methods Knowledge Base. Retrieved from

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