Research Methods for Business Students


I have learned the importance of research through my academic journey. For instance, I have had many assignments and projects that required finding information outside of the course materials. Also, scholars have also found that academic research fosters innovation (Mozrall, 2017, par.9). That motivated me to take a course – Research Methods for Business Students offered online at on January 7, 2020, joining more than 1850 students; reading notes, watching tutorials, taking quizzes, and participating in forums. The course’s purpose is to equip business students with strong skills to write the best research papers with an excellent methodology.


Before taking the course, I was ever confused about what comprises of a credible research paper. I knew that there is a kind of research where researchers use samples from a population, and another one gathers information from libraries and the internet to explore, describe, or explain a topic. However, I realized that research papers in higher education should be organized in a particular methodology, that is academically acceptable and easy to support or describe a topic with credible information critically. Gaining that knowledge is critical for my academic success through the Capstone Projects, thesis, and dissertation writing. Besides, my profession must collect, sample, analyze, critique, and present data efficiently, and with excellence.

Since I took the course online, I presumed that the quizzes and assessment tests would be challenging. In past, I had heard a relative claim his course – Business Analysis required her to study a lot for the assessment. Nevertheless, the assessment tests were fair and tested mostly what was taught in the preceding lessons. While one has to be keen and approach the test diligently, it is comprehensive and exciting. I feel that the tests were suitable and sufficient for the purpose intended.

Analysis of Learning

What I Learned

I have learned the different types, structures, and the importance of the research methodology of an academic research paper. In module one, I learned that a research paper could be basic or applied. Either type can be exploratory, descriptive, or explanatory, based on a research topic that one chooses and their objectives. It took one day to go through all the nine lessons as I had to repeat the module twice. In module two-three lessons, I learned the importance of the literature review and how I can straightforwardly identify credible sources and create a simple library on my google drive. This is critical as information available online is not always credible. Module two took me two days; although it takes about two hours to read and watch through, I challenged myself to find a research topic, gather literature sources, and write a three-page literature review. I also read about the theoretical framework, which was not explained in details.


Module three took me three days to complete the eleven modules. It was an essential part that explored the actual researching exercise. I learned how to choose a research design for either qualitative or quantitative study. I also learned the ideal application of various data collection methods such as experiments, case studies, inquiry, and action research. Besides, I understood my role in the research exercise, and what could make my valid and reliable. It took me three days to learn about sampling and practice the various sampling methods in three lessons in module four. I found the need to review previous courses that entailed statistics and probability to compliment the information offered in this module. That way, I found it very exciting and straightforward to do sampling through either probability or non-probability techniques. Besides, module five concerning data collection, on which I learned the use of secondary data and collected primary data through semi-structured and structured interviews, observation, and questionaries. It took me two days to cover the four lessons for module five.

Generalizations and Conclusions

Overall, I learned that the best approach for academic research writing – advisably deductive or inductive, is positioning self between basic and applied research. The research topic will best be a connection between my academic course and personal interest. A literature review is essential, where relevant, credible sources are collected and stored in a library and used to expound the knowledge base of the research topic. The research onion is the best tool for stratifying and using various methodological strategies. The sample selected must be generalizable for the whole population to make the research valid. Lastly, secondary data is important, by primary data helps in making ideal and more ideal conclusions.

Literature Support: According to Bentley, Gulbrandsen, and Kyvik (2015 p.690), university research papers are best not be basic, since that is less informative, and not applied, since it would lack societal beneficence. Thus, as explained in module one, the best approach is that between basic and applied research. Maggio, Sewell, and Artino (2016 p.298) contend as with the course that literature review is the basis of quality research, which provides relevance, increases the scope of understanding, and organization. Also, Zefeiti and Mohamad (2015 p.2) insist that a research onion in methodology helps include all important parts of the research, fostering its validity.

Application in Context


This course generally links to the previous learning requirements, which have ever required consulting materials outside course materials. Studies show that higher education institutions are dedicated to widening the scope of research (Bentley, Gulbrandsen and Kyvik, 2015 p.694). While I have mostly written basic research in past, I could not score high due to poor organization of ideas and lack of credibility. As explained by Maggio, Sewell, and Artino (2016 p.298), research papers will have a strongly systemic and critical evaluation of literature sources to warrant it credible. Besides, I aspire to earn a Ph.D., the skills gained in this course are crucial throughout writing thesis and dissertations and their proposals (Bentley, Gulbrandsen and Kyvik, 2015 p.691). I assume that regardless of whether the course focuses on business students’ research, the same principles can be applied on other subjects or with slight variations.


In personal, career, professional development context, research methodology enhances individuals’ skills to collect, analyze, organize, and present findings in a manner that is valuable and has beneficence. Studies have shown that research skills link to educators’ effectiveness in performance by facilitating mastery of a systematic and comprehensive approach to teaching (Goldberg et al., 2010). Another study contends that teacher-researchers value in-service teachers’ professional development (Chow, Chu, Tavares and Lee, 2015). Authors provide evidence for teacher research benefits such as improved classroom experience and collaboration (2015 p.34). Therefore, this course has contributed to adding value to my career and professional competence. That is, I will have an easy time connecting between everyday experiences and organizing data both for work and academic purposes. That is in line with my career goal to become a professor.


The course has turned out to be very important to me, and I rate it as essential. The learning experience was good; it is both comprehensive and resourceful despite being an online course. Overall, it is a worthy course that all college and university students may consider taking. Although one might be skeptical about the complexity of the course and tests, they are all tailored to encourage understanding of the research methods.

Reconstruct Self-Concept

I will also utilize the various strategies for the research methods learned in both academic and work-related research. Currently, I can single out credible sources and develop a research question, and I intend to practice on sampling and data collection techniques. There is nothing I would have done differently.


Throughout the course, I have developed research topics with several interesting research questions for each. I have also found scholarly articles and other inline sources that relate to one topic, for which I have created a liberally with an excel sheet. I am working on drafting the feasible research design and requesting one of the department’s assessors to review it. Since everything I learned is currently apparent, I look forward to writing the best research papers and thesis in the future.

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Bentley, P., Gulbrandsen, M. and Kyvik, S., 2015. The relationship between basic and applied research in universities. Higher Education, 70(4), pp.689-709.

Chow, K., Chu, S., Tavares, N. and Lee, C., 2015. Teachers as researchers: A discovery of their emerging role and impact through a school-university collaborative research. Brock Education Journal, 24(2).

Goldberg, L., Parham, D., Coufal, K., Maeda, M., Scudder, R. and Sechtem, P., 2010. Peer Review: The Importance Of Education For Best Practice. Journal of College Teaching & Learning (TLC), 7(2).

Maggio, L., Sewell, J. and Artino, A., 2016. The Literature Review: A Foundation for High-Quality Medical Education Research. Journal of Graduate Medical Education, 8(3), pp.297-303.

Mozrall, J., 2017. Academic Research Plays A Crucial Role In Business Innovation. [online] Rochester Business Journal. Available at: <> [Accessed 6 October 2020].

Zefeiti, S. and Mohamad, N., 2015. Methodological Considerations in Studying Transformational Leadership and its Outcomes. International Journal of Engineering Business Management, 7, p.10.