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UNIV 110 Scholarly Inquiry and Research Methods: Assignment #1

Introduction to the skills and tools of information research in a high tech environment, beginning with topic analysis and ending with a sound, analytical research report. Emphasis is placed on development of critical thinking strategies.

Assignment One

Assignment is due at the beginning of the next class.  Send by e-mail attachment to


Use the above assignment template to complete the assignment.  It's a rich text format file that should work in any word processing program. Clicking on the link will download it to your computer.  Find it at the bottom of your screen (Chrome) or open it when prompted (other browsers).  If you have any problems, please e-mail me and I'll send you a copy.  You can enter your assignment answers right on this document and then send it to me by e-mail attachment.

Consult the rubrics to the right to determine what you should be doing to achieve excellence in the assignment.

 Assignment Instructions:

Do the reading: Research Strategies, Preface, Chapters One and Two.

A. View the "What is Scholarship?" presentation at and answer the following questions:

1. Explain what is meant by the statement: "Authority depends on context." 
2. Why is it important to understand the process by which information was created?
3. What are four "dimensions of value" given to information?
4. In considering Research as Inquiry, what is true research, and what is it not?
5. What is meant by "Scholarship is a Conversation?" Be sure to explain what a "conversation" is in scholarship.
6. In what ways is searching "strategic?"

B. Begin working on your topic (see the additional box below for an example of how to do this part of the assignment)

1. Choose a topic that you will research through this and the following assignments. It is advisable to contact me in advance of next class at so that I can have a look at your topic and make sure that it will work for this course.
2. Develop a working knowledge of your topic by looking it up the following:

  ○  Wikipedia

  ○  A more formal research tool. Find your subject area from the following website and use the books/e-books tab to identify online reference sources (dictionaries, encyclopedias, guides) related to your topic: -->Choose a subject area-->Find the Books/E-Books tab-->identify a reference source.  For example, in Leadership, find Encyclopedia of Management Theory, click on the table of contents, and navigate to the entry you want. For example:


(Do not use full books on the topic, journal articles or websites at this stage). 

3. Summarize in a paragraph of 8-10 lines the basic facts about your topic, based on your study of the two reference sources.  Don’t copy. Put the information in your own words.  Don’t pose any research questions at this time or describe how you plan to do your research on the topic.  Just summarize your working knowledge.  Which source – Wikipedia or the formal research work – offers you the “best” information, and why?

Please contact me at any time by e-mail if you have a question about the assignment or are running into difficulties.  Please use the assignment template at the top of this box.

An Example for Part B of this assignment

B. Begin working on your topic

1. My topic: (keep it brief, e.g. Delegation in Leadership)

Servant Leadership

2. Working knowledge from reference sources:

  ○  Wikipedia

Title of Wikipedia article(s) used: (e.g. “Delegation”) "Servant Leadership"

  ○  A more formal reference source.: Use as a guide to locate such sources.  No journal articles or websites.

Title of source used: (e.g. Encyclopedia of Leadership):  Encyclopedia of Management Theory: "Servant Leadership"

Summary in 8-10 lines of the most important facts/features of the topic:

Servant Leadership was first described by Robert Greenleaf in 1970 in his book, Servant leadership: A journey into the nature of legitimate power and greatness. This view argues that it is the role of a leader to serve rather than to dominate.  Serving brings benefit both to the employees and to the organization as a whole. While the concept of servant leadership has been found in leaders throughout history, notably in Jesus, this role, as described by Greenleaf, is very well suited to today's organizations where having an empowered workforce makes the organization stronger and more able to adapt to changing conditions. Servant leaders find a deep level of commitment among their workers. Despite the fact that servant leadership was described in 1970, it is still viewed as a fairly new theory, and not everyone in the leadership community is convinced that it is a useful form of leadership. Further research is needed to demonstrate its effectiveness.

Which source – Wikipedia or the more formal source - offers the best information? Why? Both sources covered the topic quite well, though the formal reference source went into more detail and generally provided stronger coverage.  

Your Professor


A well done assignment will include the following features:

1. Answers to the initial questions that show understanding and insight into the issues involved.

2. Choice of a topic that shows good likelihood of being researchable

3. Good choice of Wikipedia article and more formal reference source that address the topic well.

4. Summary is clear, covers the topic well, and summarizes rather than arguing a case.

5. Clear choice of which source offers the best information and explanation of why.