Sample Assignment 5: Problem-based Learning (100%)

RRU students

Note: This assignment totals the full course requirements of 100%.

Assignment Description

Part 1

Team Assignment – External Scan Report and Presentation (20%)

Each team will complete a comprehensive scan of the client's ecosystem which will include a thorough analysis of the prevailing external environment, including driving forces and the relevant industry sector using applicable tools, techniques, and models, from their prior course work and from this course.

Each team will also conduct a thorough competitive analysis based upon a review of the client video case, web site, and applicable secondary research. Completing this deliverable (comprising two elements – see below) will familiarize each team with the client's competitors' strengths and weaknesses, the 'key success factors' required for the industry sector, and the nature of the client's competitive advantage.

The teams will present and submit this deliverable to the instructors on the second Monday by 9:00 am and deliver the assignment to the relevant drop box at the course site by the same time. Each assignment will include:

  • A PowerPoint presentation (aim for 10-12 slides) capturing the key elements of the team's written report and any ‘ah ha’ moments that emerged while undertaking the analysis. Presentations should take no more than 15 minutes.
  • A written report – maximum 3,500 words + Appendices . The Executive Summary is included in the word count. This external scan document will also be included in the team's final report to the client as an Appendix item.

Part 2

Team Assignment - Final Report and Presentation to Client (30%)

Each team will complete a comprehensive consulting report for the client which contains their insights and recommendations relative to one external, market driven issue and one internal, managerial oriented issue. The report will also contain the previously completed external scan that will be attached as an Appendix item.

Final Presentation to Client: On the final Wednesday each team will make a 15 minute presentation to a panel consisting of the client and the course academic leads.

This PowerPoint presentation (aim for 10-12 slides) will summarize the findings and insights contained in their final report. Teams will share their critical synthesis, systematic inquiry, and any new knowledge relevant to the issues which emerged from the data and information they uncovered in their research, as well as that provided by the assigned client.

Final Report to Client: Teams will deliver two full hard copies of their complete final report at the commencement of the final Wednesday at 8:30 am. Reports must also be submitted to the drop box at the same time. The length of the report should be between 7,500 and 10,000 words + Appendices plus an Appendix containing the external scan) with appropriate adherence to formatting, citing, and professional consulting standards. Please use the Royal Roads formatting guidelines. The reports are to be carefully crafted, polished and concise with a focus on providing the client with actionable insights and recommendations.

Part 3

Individual Assignment - Reflection (30%)

Each learner will complete an individual paper which addresses the following question:

Based on your recent team deliberations and client interactions during the residency, provide your own personal insights and critical assessment as to the client organization's potential to meet its stated growth objectives over the next two years.

The format will be a succinct, professional report, addressed to the organization’s leadership team,and should incorporate innovative models, tools and methodologies that have been developed during your MBA program studies.

A word count range of 2000 - 3,000 words + appropriate Appendices - will apply.

The assignment will be reviewed and graded by the course instructors and will not be shared with the clients.

This assignment will be submitted via drop box at the start of class on the final Tuesday at 9:00 am.

Part 4

Contribution (Individual, 20%)

Business professionalism, here, means participating and contributing actively. Effective participation is not just speaking in class, but involves reflecting on colleagues' positions/observations and responding as appropriate. Meaningful contributions relate to both course 'content' and the discussion 'processes'. Specifically, your instructors will be looking for evidence of your contributions toward: contributing to the learning environment; engaging in constructive feedback; demonstrating leadership and professionalism; fostering effective communication within and outside the class; championing personal growth and professional development; achieving greater Emotional Intelligence (EQ); and assuring confidentiality.

To further clarify:

Content contributions – demonstrate the ability to think critically about the topic at hand, solve problems using models, principles and theories discussed, separate facts from opinions, identify reasonable assumptions, provide significant analyses, and suggest ideas, alternatives or actions not previously identified. These contributions add breadth and depth to the class's understanding of the material being discussed, and should occupy a substantial portion of the class time.

Examples of Content contribution behaviours may include (but are not limited to):

  • Comes to class or online discussions having done the readings and being able to demonstrate application of the learning in class discussion
  • Brings relevant examples from current news events, work and real life experiences
  • Expresses opinions that are well thought out based on experiences, conceptual materials presented or outside readings
  • Identifies issues and presents potential solutions that integrate course material

Process contributions – are based on communication and reflecting skills and the ability to work with others. They affect the flow and structure of the class discussion. Examples of process contributions are: questions that lead to clarity, linkage to points raised earlier, discussions of differences of opinion, suggestions to explore related materials more fully, or meaningful summaries.

Examples of Process contribution behaviours may include (but are not limited to):

  • Comments or questions that follow from or add to, rather than distract from, those made by others
  • Demonstrates the ability to use conflict resolution techniques
  • Fosters and builds a team culture that is respectful, encouraging, supportive and receptive to change, progress and flexibility in order to achieve desired results
  • Recognizes the benefits of and embraces the different cultural backgrounds and values of others and works to build a collaborative and supportive work environment
  • Provides constructive feedback on the performance of others and seeks feedback from colleagues
  • Shares knowledge, solicits and values input from others and contributes to the work of the group
  • Demonstrates high level of integrity, personal responsibility and ethics. Contributions reflect support for student code of conduct guidelines and academic misconduct policies.

Your contributions will be assessed according to the following guidelines:

  • A To A+: Outstanding contributor: Contributions in discussions reflect exceptional preparation. Ideas offered are always substantive, yield one or more major insights, and provide direction to the group. Arguments are well substantiated and persuasively presented. If you were not a member of the discussion, the quality of discussion would diminish significantly.
  • B+ to A-: Good Contributor: Contributions reflect thorough preparation. Ideas are usually substantive, provide good insights into the topic under discussion, and sometimes provide direction for the group. Arguments reflect clear thinking. If you were not a member of the discussion, the quality of discussion would be diminished.
  • B- to B: Adequate Contributor: Contributions reflect satisfactory preparation. Ideas are sometimes substantive, provide generally useful insights, but seldom offer a major new direction for the discussion. Arguments are sometimes presented, and are fairly well substantiated and sometimes compelling. If you were not a member of the discussion, the quality of discussion would be somewhat diminished.
  • F: Unsatisfactory Contributor or Non-Participant: Contributions reflect inadequate preparation. Ideas offered are seldom substantive, are often off-point, provide few (if any) insights, and give no constructive direction to the group. Clear arguments on the topic at hand and/or integrative comments are absent. If you were not a member of the discussion, the quality of discussion would be improved or would not be changed.
Each team will complete a comprehensive consulting report for the client which contains their insights and recommendations relative to one external, market driven issue and one internal, managerial oriented issue. The report will also contain the previously completed external scan that will be attached as an Appendix item.

Final Presentation to Client: On the final Wednesday each team will make a 15 minute presentation to a panel consisting of the client and the course academic leads.

This PowerPoint presentation (aim for 10-12 slides) will summarize the findings and insights contained in their final report. Teams will share their critical synthesis, systematic inquiry, and any new knowledge relevant to the issues which emerged from the data and information they uncovered in their research, as well as that provided by the assigned client.

Final Report to Client: Teams will deliver two full hard copies of their complete final report at the commencement of the final Wednesday at 8:30 am. Reports must also be submitted to the drop box at the same time. The length of the report should be between 7,500 and 10,000 words + Appendices plus an Appendix containing the external scan) with appropriate adherence to formatting, citing, and professional consulting standards. Please use the Royal Roads formatting guidelines. The reports are to be carefully crafted, polished and concise with a focus on providing the client with actionable insights and recommendations.


Last modified: Monday, 9 July 2018, 12:39 PM