Potential publication to analyze for assignment

Note: This is not a full review but rather a quicker analysis to see if this publication is suitable enough for the assignment

Publication title:




Burcu Bulgurcu  – Sauder School of Business University of British Columbia Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z2 CANADA – burcu.bulgurcu@sauder.ubc.ca

Hasan Cavusoglu – Sauder School of Business University of British Columbia Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z2 CANADA – hasan.cavusoglu@sauder.ubc.ca

Izak Benbasat Sauder – School of Business University of British Columbia Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z2 CANADA – izak.benbasat@sauder.ubc.ca


Researching UBC tells me that it’s a high ranking university and checking the emails shows me that they were in fact all registered there at some point. Further research of other field-related publications by each of the authors, and LinkedIn profiles of the authors lead me to believe they are credible to publish information relating to their field of knowledge.

From the abstract i got the following information very easily:

What is the research topic?

Employees in relation to information security and how policies, staff tendencies have an effect on information security.

What did the authors do?

They examined previous literature, research, then generated models & theories which they tested by doing their own research in the form of surveys.

What they discovered

Organizations should create appropriate training and security awareness programs that ensure employees’ information security awareness

Effects of attitude, normative beliefs, and self-efficacy to comply on a customer service employee’s intention to comply and possibly break policy are significant

ISA has a direct significant influence on attitude toward compliance and plays a major role in shaping outcome beliefs

Read the introduction to get the big picture of the area of research, note any words that you don’t understand and look them up. Try to identify from the introduction what ‘research question(s)’ was that the authors were hoping to answer.

There wasn’t any words in the introduction that most people would have to research.

It’s very clear what they’re going to be looking at at in the intro and these are the questions they specifically state:

(1) What are the broad classes of an employee’s beliefs about the overall assessment of consequences of compliance or noncompliance that influence attitude toward compliance and, in turn, intention to comply with the ISP?

(2) What are an employee’s beliefs about the outcomes of compliance and noncompliance that influence beliefs about the overall assessment of consequences?

(3) What is the role of information security awareness (ISA) in shaping an employee’s beliefs about outcomes and attitude toward compliance?

Read the conclusion. If this is well written it will be another summary of the paper (a bit like the abstract) but it will focus more on the results and what they seem to mean.

the conclusion is well written and draws from the findings of the research and survey results.




Assignment 2 – Finding a suitable paper

I went through a bunch of research papers related to studies containing IT and picked out two that would be most suited for the assignment. I found google scholar a useful tool but i was surprised just how many publications were inaccessible without paying a one off fee. Because of the costs i decided to take Claire’s advice and use the library since they subscribe to such publications.

I followed the criteria for finding papers:

  • 10 pages or less
  • Author has to have done at least some of their own research
  • Single author – don’t want a perfect piece of work to be critical of
  • Post-2008 if possible – must teach me something relevant


Finding a Topic to Critically Analyze for Assignment Two

I’ve taken a bit of a holiday from blogging for this class but now that i’ve got other projects out the way i can work on this.

Assignment two is 25 hours – time which will be spent critically analyzing a piece of academic literature using all of the knowledge accumulated up until this point. I’ll definitely do my analysis on an IT topic since that’s what interests me the most, but i think half of the challenge for me will be finding a good IT related paper to critically analyze. It will be a lot harder to critically analyze an IT paper than a history paper for example because IT concepts are set in stone whereas history has many interpretations/stories where any writer bias can be more easily be found.

Tomorrow i will search the internet for academic papers using some advanced search means. I will then find five papers i think will be best suited for the assignment, and narrow it down to one so i can make progress on the assignment and journal.

Week 6 – Focus Groups

Focus Groups

This week we went over last weeks work which we were meant to do in pairs and blog about. My group was assigned Focus Groups as a research method to find out about.

What are Focus Groups?

Definition 1 (Wikipedia): A focus group is a small, but demographically diverse group of people whose reactions are studied especially in market research or political analysis in guided or open discussions about a new product or something else to determine the reactions that can be expected from a larger population.

Definition 2 (ours): A Primary research method using an open conversation among a small group with a moderator asking questions.

What kinds of questions/problems might Focus Groups be useful for?

Situations where a small diverse group could give the best answer (Primary research).

How could it be used in IT research? (example)

A specific example of the use of focus groups in IT research can be read here:


Other areas of research where focus groups could be useful are:

  • Exploration: Finding out about an issue of importance from the target population
  • Program Development: Asking members of the target population what types of activities they  would enjoy
  • Systematic Research: Collecting in-depth data on specific research questions
  • Evaluation: Collecting in-depth data on specific evaluation questions to determine program success or progress

from http://www.mmgconnect.com/projects/userfiles/file/focusgroupbrief.pdf

What are the main strengths of the approach

  • People may express opinions in person that may not come out on paper in a large analysis of data.
  • Focus groups also allow for team members to build on others feedback.

What are the main weaknesses of the approach

  • Group-think – As most of the conversation will be face to face, some people within the conversation may influence others
  • Reluctance to express dissatisfaction with something face to face i.e. when asked to give feedback on a piece of software, people may be reluctant to criticize it face to face as opposed to giving feedback on paper anonymously.

Week 5

Determining credibility and validity

Credibility – How believable a piece of information is to the receiver

Validity – How likely is it to be true (valid)



Research questions – what are the good, bad and why?

Breaking down example questions

  • Which of these two laptops gives the best performance
    The problem with the question is that no context is provided – What does best mean  Best for a particular game? – best in a general sense? if so, what does that general sense mean?
    easy to test through numeral analysis to bring together an average for what constitutes good performance
  • are virtual worlds like second life or mindcraft useful for teaching
    Useful for what subjects?
    Assumes resources are available to everyone equally?
    Not all vitual worlds are equal? Minecraft and second life are not very comparable
    What do we mean by useful?
    Useful for whom?
  • why dont many school students 16-18 yr old choose to study OT and polytechnic or university
    is this relevant to an IT project?
    What is many?
    No context of which students
    Pro: It is being specific about certain things (school leavers, 16-18yrs)
    Question assumes that the title is true
    No geographic context


  • Which ISP in NZ gives the best value for money?
    What does ‘best value’ mean?
    Different geographical regions even in NZ
    Asking for one specific answer but could be several
    People value different things in an ISP, best value for whom?


  • How do I feel about trying to work with slow internet speeds?
    What is slow?
    Who is the “i”
    It’s a creative paradigm question


  • What are the main security issues associated with ‘cloud computing’
    What are ‘main’ security issues?
    Extremely broad
    What is meant by cloud computing?

Week 4 – Identifying the right approach

As a follow up from last week, Claire talked about the need to identify the right approach when it comes to the knowledge you want to discover.

I will save this quote from claire as i think it is very relevant considering we have research assignments and projects coming up.”Identifying the ontology and epistemology of our own, or others’, research is important as it underlies the choice of research method and the credibility of the results”


To recap on the meanings: