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Assignment 4: Annotated Bibliography
Note: I STRONGLY encourage you to work through the library exercise found in
the Discussion section before starting this assignment. It is available for
two weeks, starting September 25.
Assignments 4 and 5 are inter-related: Assignment 4, the annotated
bibliography, lays the ground work for Assignment 5, the research paper. As
a consequence, both assignments involve the same research question and case
A topic in management related to organizational theory
A case study of an actual organization in which that topic is at issue.
For example, the topic of organizational life cycle or the topic of
innovation and change are both topics that could be found as an issue in the
American Red Cross, on which much has been published in scholarly
Both the topic and the case MUST appear in both Assignment 4 and Assignment
5, or else you will not receive full credit on those assignments.
Select a topic that is of interest to you from the following list of
organizational theory issues. (Note: There may be another topic related to
this course that interests you. If so, please get your professor’s input
and approval before proceeding.) Sample topics: boundary spanning, bounded
rationality, bureaucracy, change, control and coordination, design for the
international environment, diversity management, ethical behavior, external
environment, innovation, inter-organizational relationships, learning
organization & knowledge management, manufacturing technology, open systems,
organization decline, organization design and/or redesign, organization life
cycle, organizational culture, political features and use of power,
reciprocal interdependence, social responsibility, sustainability, teams,
Find a case study in the UMUC virtual library that involves that management
issue and provide the full reference to its source. Though not required, to
get the most from this assignment, this case study could be in an industry
where you work or plan to work in your career. For example, it might be
health care, government, manufacturing, hospitality, technology, global
trade, child care, national security, transportation, energy, etc. –
whatever is your interest. Select an organization in that industry for your
case study. By choosing an industry that is relevant to you, you’ll learn
more about it from this assignment. In addition, your insider knowledge will
give you a framework for understanding how an organization in that industry
operates; that will make the assignment easier for you.
A published case study is any article that discusses in sufficient detail
the issue facing an actual single organization and how that organization
addressed that issue. Some of the databases in the virtual library allow you
to search using “case study” as a filter. However, just because the term
case study exists in the title of the article may not mean that the article
actually gives you enough information to work with; you have to make that
judgment. Two of the best sources of articles – ABI/Inform Global and
Business Source Complete – don’t allow for searches using case study as
a criteria, so you may have to do some digging. Generally speaking, a
published case study should be between 10 and 15 pages in length to give you
enough information to work with.
Develop a research question to explore the issue as it relates to the topic
within the selected case study organization.
Find and read at least five articles in scholarly journals in the UMUC
library databases that discuss the issue you selected and that may assist in
answering your research question.
Develop an annotated reference list that includes at least five scholarly
articles (in addition to the case itself). See additional information under
the Course Content tab for readings about both annotated reference lists and
case studies: Creating Annotated Bibliographies and Analyzing a Case.
Your information on the management issue must come from articles in
scholarly journals found in the virtual library,not from the Internet,
Wikipedia, newspapers, popular magazines (e.g., Time, Newsweek, Business
Week), etc. Academic journals are those usually published by universities or
by professional societies (e.g., The Journal of the AMA). Just having the
word “journal” in the title of the publication doesn’t actually make
it a journal; after all, The Wall Street Journal is still just a daily
Additional supplemental information about the organization you’re studying
(not the issue) can come from non-academic sources. While many organizations
have been the subject of published case studies and even some (such as,
again, the American Red Cross) are more frequent subjects of case studies,
you may need to go outside the journals in the UMUC library for additional
information specific to that topic as it relates to that organization. That
is acceptable provided the primary source of your information about the case
is the study in a scholarly journal in the UMUC library. For additional
information on how the organization is addressing the management issue, you
can use non-library resources (e.g., the organization’s web site, articles
in newspapers and general interest magazines, etc.).
Note: Do not employ Wikipedia and other encyclopedia-type sources. These are
“open sources”, meaning that anyone – knowledgeable or not – can
contribute. They are not subjected to the same form of editorial scrutiny as
are newspapers and magazines, much less to the extent that peer-reviewed
articles are scrutinized for quality.
In a similar vein, be appropriately skeptical of what organizations post to
their web sites; they can sometimes be nothing more than puffery. A
statement such as “we have increased sales by 4.5% annually for each of
the past five years” is one thing, especially if it is backed up by
statistics; a statement of “we are the leading provider of quality
widgets” is another matter, especially if there are no statistics provided
to support that.
In your references list, for any supplemental sources on the organization
(case) from the Internet, include the site where you found it and the date
you retrieved it.
To be complete, your submission must include:
Case study (with full citation)
Five detailed annotations for 5 articles (including citations)