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Archive for November, 2010

OAR Comment: Correlation? Association?

Sunday, November 28th, 2010

I am struggling with the OAR comments and have no chair/mentor to ask for clarification or help. Here is one of the comments:

Research Questions: Since the PSR dimensions that will be the dependent variables are described as “interrelated”, the Learner must include a discussion of how those interrelationships (i.e., correlations) will impact the assumptions of the selected statistical analysis procedures (and how the interrelationships will be controlled/handled if they represent a threat to those assumptions) as well as how those interrelationships might impact the interpretation of the findings

The variables in the proposal are sustainability status (nominal/independent) and levels of five purchasing social responsibility (PSR) dimensions (ordinal/dependent). The five PSR dimensions are related because they are all part of socially responsible corporate procurement policies. As these are not continuous, from my readings it appears that I cannot determine correlation (as above statement implies) but rather only association. I plan to use MANOVA analysis to identify associations among variables, because the variables are related. I am not sure I understand exactly what the OAR is asking in reference to how the interrelationships will be controlled/handled if they represent a threat to those assumptions. Here is what I have written so far:

There are five assumptions that must be met for MANOVA: the sample must be random, observations must be independent, each variable must be normally distributed, and within-group homogeneity of variance should be the same for both groups (Bray & Maxwell, 1985). Violating the assumptions does not invalidate MANOVA; it reduces robustness (Bray & Maxwell, 1985). Before running MANOVA, data will be tested for normality and outliers, which will be removed. Homogeneity of variances will be computed by computing the error variance (SS error) by adding the sum of squares within each status group (French, Macedo, Poulsen, Waterson, & Yu, 2008). Wilks’ lambda will be used to test mean differences in the two groups based on the combinations of PSR dimensions. SPSS converts Wilk’s lambda to an F distribution; if lambda is significant, “it implies that there is at least one significant contrast between groups and this difference can be detected when the entire set of outcome variables is examined” (Warner, 2008, p. 715).

My chair resigned and I don’t have that resource to consult. I am struggling with understanding several of the OAR’s complex comments. After all, this is a concept paper only – not the dissertation proposal.

CP rejected; changes needed

Thursday, November 25th, 2010

I received my concept paper (CP) back….rejected by the OAR. Here is the first comment:

The Learner has submitted a Concept Paper envisioning a quantitative research study to compare, analyze, and evaluate dimensions of purchasing supply responsibility related to sustainability. This is an important and timely research topic, and if implemented successfully, the findings would be useful for the business community. In general, the Introduction, Statement of the Problem, and Purpose of the Study sections are well articulated and the paper is consistent with Northcentral and APA (6th Ed.) specifications and format. There are, however, clarifications and modifications needed before moving to the next stage of the process as listed below.

I am pleased that the reviewers recognized the value of my topic and the intro, problem, and purpose, as well as APA format were mostly OK. However, there were four items listed below that paragraph that I must address. Some of the things that I need to address were resulted from changes recommended from the committee! I am working on making modifications to the CP now, and hope to have a finished version to turn in by Sunday, Nov. 28. Today is Thanksgiving and so I am off work for four days. I do have to grade some student papers from the COM/285 course that finished up on Tuesday, and work with my mentee at the University as well this holiday weekend.

About two weeks ago, I received a cryptic message from my chair that he was dropping me, or rather he had contacted my AA to drop me. However, the AA had not heard anything from him. She assures me that they will find me another chair. Unfortunately I have had little help from my chair, and now that I do not have one, I am getting no help. Navigating these waters has become increasingly difficult….

The Majestic Plastic Bag – A Mockumentary

Saturday, November 6th, 2010

Academy Award winner Jeremy Irons narrates a thought-provoking mockumentary about the journey of a plastic bag to the ocean. Then watch Charles Moore explain about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. Reflect on plastic bag pollution and decide how you can make a difference. Choose a sustainable solution, not a plastic-wrapped one.