Final Report Guidelines

Schedule

The final report will be written in groups of two after the first four group meetings. On the 5th group meeting (support group) the teacher will look through the preliminary reports and give feedback on them. The more work you have put to the report before this meeting, the easier it will be for you to finish the report on your own.

*The presentation version of the report has to be submitted to the instructor and the peer evaluators till the day indicated in the Course schedule. The final report groups will present their work and the peer evaluation groups their critique on the 6th group meeting.

Final Report Groups

The report groups will consist of two people from the same practice group. You are free to choose you pair, or if needed, the group instructor will divide you into pairs. The final report groups will be formed during the 4th group meeting. The group instructor will assign a peer evaluator group for each final report group so that every report group has to both write a final report and evaluate another report.

Instructions

The report group has to formulate a research question from the course data, i.e. one independent variable, one dependent variable, and possibly a third background variable. Using the methods learnt during the course, the group seeks to answer the research question in the final report. The research questions have to be approved by the group instructor. Email your research questions to the instructor by the time informed in the 4th session.

In order to get a passing grade, you have to do the following things in your final report:

• Explain and justify your choice of variables
• Present their basic statistics and distributions
• Explain and justify the variable transformations you have done
• Answer the research question with meaningful methods
• Edit the charts and graphs so that they are fit for publication
• Interpret your charts and graphs
• Write a short summary on your main findings

See the sample charts for guidelines on how you should edit your charts and graphs.

Final Report Length

The ideal length of the final report is 5 pages including charts and graphs. The written part should be concise and to the point.

Peer Evaluation

The job of the peer evaluators is to preexamine the final report and present their critique in the final meeting. The peer reviewers will go through each of the eight requirements of the final report, and give a short statement on each:

• Has the choice of variables been explained and justified?
• Have the basic statistics and distributions been presented?
• Have the variable transformations been explained and justified?
• Has the research question been answered with meaningful methods?
• Have the charts and graphs been edited according to the requirements?
• Have the charts and graphs been given concise and informative headlines?
• Have the charts and graphs been interpreted?
• Has a short summary on the main findings been written?

In addition to a short presentation in the final meeting the evaluators print out and fill a peer evaluation form, which they will hand in to the instructor in the beginning of the last meeting. (So make a copy of the form if you use it yourself when making your presentation.)

Presentation

Every final report group will give a short oral presentation during the last group meeting. The presentation should cover the research question, a summary of the findings and a chart or graph which demonstrates the findings. Both of the students responsible for the report should participate equally in the presentation. The maximum length of the presentation is 10 minutes, after which the peer evaluators have 5 minutes to present their critique. The possible files needed in the presentation should be brought along on a USB memory stick or saved in a folder accessible with a web browser.

After the presentation and the peer evaluator’s report the group instructor will decide if the work needs further review before submitting it for grading. The written report can be revised before submitting the final version even if the group instructor gives you a permission to submit it. The revised versions of the final report have to be handed in by the time indicated in the Course schedule. The final versions will be emailed (allowed formats: .doc, .odt, or .pdf) to the following addresses: timo.harmo(at)helsinki.fi . and ari.erti(at)helsinki.fi.