cultural diversity audits in my Real World applied research practice

Having conducted cultural diversity audits in my Real World applied research practice, I will share some insights to help you understand the internal workings of the SOCS 350 ON course project. Limitations of the course project: A cultural diversity audit is a multi-method form of research that involves secondary research (examining the content of published and internal documents and records) and primary research (interviewing organizational executives, conducting focus groups with employees, using an on-line survey asking employees about their experiences). The SOCS 350 ON course project involves only part of one of these methods: secondary research examining published documents (the organizational website and published documents providing information on current standards for cultural diversity initiatives in organizations) . Ethical considerations: Because of the strict research ethics that govern all research projects involving humans, students are not allowed to directly contact the organization they have chosen to research, or anyone associated with the organization. If a student chooses his or her own organization to research, only the organization’s website may be used. No contact with colleagues, use of internal documents or reference to his or her personal experiences in the organization is permitted. Creating a research instrument: The research instrument is a matrix that you will create to organize your data and analyze them. Your data consists of the facts that you collect from published documents and the organization’s website). The matrix consists of the following: • A set of benchmarks for best practices in cultural diversity initiatives that you identify from information publicly available on the internet or a research textbook if you have one; • A simple ranking grid for each benchmark by which you score the organization on the benchmark based on the information you find on the organization’s website. For ease of use the organization’s score on each benchmark is either very well developed (score = 3), partly developed (score = 2), not well developed (score = 1) or no information is available (score = 0) Collecting and analyzing the data (Findings). Using the research instrument, go through the website seeking information about cultural diversity initiatives in the categories you have identified as benchmarks. Score each benchmark numerically. At the end of this exercise you will have a partial understanding of the organization’s cultural diversity profile in the benchmark categories. If the website contains information about something the organization is doing that enhances its cultural diversity initiatives but which you did not have on your benchmark list, add a new benchmark and score it. Describe your findings for each benchmark in a short paragraph. What is the organization’s score for each benchmark? What does the score mean in terms of desirable characteristics or problem areas? If you identify a problem area, what would you suggest the organization do about it? Reporting the results (Summary and Conclusions): What have you learned about the organization’s cultural diversity practices from your research? What are the implications for internal cohesion within the organization, for recruiting and retaining staff and for enhancing the organization’s social responsibility image externally with stakeholders (shareholders if a publicly traded corporation or members of a non-profit organization, employees, suppliers, government agencies and the general public)? Based on your findings would you want to work for this organization or recommend it to others? Why or why not? Installments of the course project: Week 2 Course project research proposal. Week 4 Resources report (list of information sources you have used to create your benchmarks, general references to the cultural diversity audit model and of course the organization’s website) Week 8 Final research report, which is a comprehensive document incorporating elements of the course project research proposal, the resources report and adding the benchmark descriptions, findings, summary and conclusions. If you have done your work well and your research report is suitably well developed, it will likely be at least 1600-2000 words, not including the title page and references section. APA format throughout is required and the document must be free of spelling, punctuation, grammar, paragraphing and other editing errors.

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