Formal report | GBA

You are also required to develop an Oral Presentation (accompanying audio-narrated PowerPoint) for the Formal Report. Instructions can be found later in this document. Options for the Formal Report: Choice is a good thing, right? There are four options for the Formal Report: Option 1: Imagine you work for a national employment/placement agency. Your clients range from the first-time job seeker to the executive level. You specialize in working with adults who have some work experience and who have just completed a BA or BS degree from your alma mater, Saint Leo University. The FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work for List comes out each year in midJanuary (available at http://fortune.com/best-companies/). Your supervisor thinks it might be useful and has asked you to prepare a report. Specifically, she wants to know: • Can establishing a working relationship with any or some or all of the companies on the FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For list help you do your job better? • Are any, some, all of these companies potential employers for the Saint Leo’s graduates you help find jobs? • Are there specific companies that the agency should target to establish an exclusive relationship with? Which ones and why? Option 2: The Federal No Child Left Behind (NCLB) education reform law (which was signed into law January 8, 2002) ties federal aid for the schools to the school system meeting academic standards and adhering to policies set by the federal government. Prepare a report for your Congressperson in the U.S. House of Representatives in which you • discuss the impact of this legislation on your local school system, • present your recommendation for what should or needs to be done, AND • detail a direct request for some specified action. To find out who your representative is, go to http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/ and follow the directions. Use information available at: • US Department of Education NCLB http://www2.ed.gov/nclb/landing.jhtml • Education Commission of the States (a nonprofit and nonpartisan organization with the mission to facilitate the sharing of education information among the states) http://www.ecs.org/ (search NCLB), • The American Federation of Teachers (the teachers’ union) http://www.aft.org/ (search NCLB)GBA 321 Formal Report Instructions 2 • The National Education Association (a volunteer-based organization, heavily involved with lobbying at both the state and federal level) http://www.nea.org/home/NoChildLeftBehindAct.html • or other information to substantiate your analysis. Option 3: Your immediate supervisor has stumbled across http://insecure.org/ —a site run by a self-described hacker who is interested in network security and providing free online information. Your supervisor wants to know how legitimate this guy is and has asked you to provide her with: • an over-view of the important issues in network security, • your opinion on Insecure.org., and • if possible, the applicability (if any) of the information from the site to your specific organization. Keep in mind as you prepare your report that your supervisor knows enough about information systems to be able to follow your reasoning as long as you do not slip into “High Geek Speak.” Option 4: Let’s say, Options 1, 2, and 3 make you yawn. But, you do need to prepare an analysis or some other type of formal report for your job, and you would like to use it for this assignment. If you are interested in pursuing this option, email the course instructor through the course email as soon as possible to discuss how best to move forward. Format for the Formal Report: Remember your audience as you plan, write, and complete your report. Your audience is under no obligation to read your report: It is up to you understand your audience well enough to craft a document that they will want to read. The Formal Report assignment is a formal business report and should follow the conventions as presented in Chapter 12: Writing Reports and Proposals and Chapter 13: Completing Reports and Proposals. In other words, use these chapters of the text as your style guide! Other valuable resources located in your text are Appendix A: Format and Layout of Business Documents, and Appendix B: Documentation of Report Sources. Use graphics (tables, charts, pictures, etc.) to assist you in illustrating your findings. Remember, there is some real validity in the phrase, a picture is worth a thousand words. Make certain to refer back to the section in Chapter 12 on Producing and Integrating Visuals as you prepare your report. Your report will be graded for: content, format, style, writing mechanics, and spelling. For this report you will want to include: PREFATORY PARTS • Title page • Letter or memo of transmittal. (Depending on which option you pick, you will need a letter or a memo. Letters go to individuals external to your organization, and memos are for internal correspondence.) • Table of contents and list of illustrations • Executive summary or synopsis (In academic writing, this is called an abstract.) BODY/TEXT • Introduction (must include problem/purpose, scope, background, limitations, organization) • Body (this is where you present your findings, discuss them, and interpret them, and what do you recommend). • Close (what where the key points? This is your call to action, what you want done.)GBA 321 Formal Report Instructions 3 SUPPLEMENTARY • Appendix, if needed (material referred to but not included in the text which you want your audience to see) • References (listing of your sources) Some FAQs about the Formal Report: How long should it be? To cover the assignment, you should plan on needing 4-6 pages of text. This is really not very long if you include pictures and graphics in your report (strongly encouraged). What format should be used? Typically use one-inch margins all around, single-spaced. Use the reference material in the appendices located in the back of the textbook for guidance regarding format. Pages need to be numbered (note the conventions for prefatory pages) and can go either at the bottom or top of the page. Use a font size of between 10 and 12 for the text. Use headers!! Why is it single-spaced? Increasingly readers are reading documents online or at least on a computer screen. Singlespaced is standard business format. Double-spaced is not as easy to read. Remember, the idea is to make the document accessible so the reader reads it! Reader accessibility is also why this report needs to be a single document and not assorted pieces. How do I cite materials? The standard for business is APA format. Use the reference material in the appendices located in the back of the textbook for in-text citation and list of reference formats. Good online sources for citing Internet materials in APA format can be found at APAStyle.org (http://apastyle.apa.org). My Turnitin Originality Report says I have not properly cited some of my sources and I know that I have! Most of the time you can see if you have a citation problem or if Turnitin’s decision making algorithm flagged something that is, in fact, properly cited. If you are unsure, contact your instructor to decide what needs to be done. Oral Presentation Instructions: Since we do not meet “live,” it is not possible for you to actually deliver your presentation to the class; however, you can prepare an outline for about a 3-5-minute informative presentation for your Formal Report, and then develop an audio-narrated PowerPoint presentation that corresponds with your outline. As a rule of thumb, a PowerPoint presentation is usually no more than one slide per minute; otherwise, your audience is “watching” and not “listening.” For longer presentations, the rule slides up to approximately three minutes per slide. The topic of your presentation is the one you chose for the Formal Repor

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