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MACC 5P61: Corporate Governance

A brief guide to researching corporate governance issues.

The Successful Term Project Research Process

What are the keys to research success?

  • Research is always a multi step process.
  • Research is often interdisciplinary.
  • Think broadly about your topic; then narrow and refine the focus.
  • Keep a record of everything you find and where and how you find it.

Follow These Steps for Research SuccessSteps to success

  1. Identify your topic
  2. Gather background information
  3. Focus your research
  4. Evaluate your sources



Adapted from Burkhardt & MacDonald (2010, p. 22)

1. Identify Your Topic

  • Your topic is the idea that you are interesting in researching for the term project.
  • State your topic in the form of a question. 
  • If the question is too broad to be researchable, refine the question in order to narrow the focus of your research.

2. Gather background information

  • Gather background information in order to get an overview of the topic.
  • Use both general and subject-specific encyclopedias and dictionaries.
  • Get more focused, in-depth, or historical background in the topic.

3. Focus Your Research

  • Gather up-to-date, current information on the topic.
  • Use appropriate periodical information from popular, trade, and scholarly sources.
  • You goal is to gather in-depth, focused information on the topic including research studies, surveys, and information from high-quality and appropriate web sites.

4. Evaluate your sources

Identifying Academic Sources: A Checklist

  • Authoritative: written by a recognized expert in the field
  • Sourced: the author credits information sources in footnotes or a bibliography
  • Peer-reviewed: the work is checked by reviewers or editors prior to publication
  • Objective: the work examines a topic fairly (i.e. it is not biased)
  • Written for academics: the audience of the work may include students, professors, or others interested in academic research.

Types of Academic Sources May Include:

  • Books published by university presses or scholarly publishers
  • Journal articles in peer-reviewed journals
  • Published reports.

Adapted from: