Leadership Model for Successful Healthcare Executive Leaders: Direct Healthcare Providers Perspectives

Leadership Model for Successful Healthcare Executive Leaders: Direct Healthcare Providers Perspectives

This Research Plan (RP), version 2.41, must be completed and reviewed before taking steps to collect data and write the dissertation. In the School of Business and Technology, its satisfactory completion satisfies dissertation milestone 5, indicating that the RP proposal has passed the “scientific merit review,” part of the IRB process.
Before going any further, review carefully the Research Plan Instructions, v2.41, available on iGuide.  It will be difficult to complete the RP without using the Instructions.

Specialization Chair’s Approval after Section 1
When you have completed Section 1 along with initial references in section 8, send the RP to your mentor for review. When your mentor considers it is ready, he or she sends it to Dissertation Support to forward to your specialization Chair. The Chair approves the topic as appropriate within your specialization. You then go on to complete the remaining sections of the RP.

Do’s and Don’ts
•    Do use the correct form! This RP is for QUALITATIVE designs.
•    Do prepare your answers in a separate Word document. Editing and revising will be easier.
o    Set font formatting to Times New Roman, 11 point, regular style font Do set paragraph indentation (“Format” menu) for no indentation, no spacing.
•    Do copy/paste items into the right-hand fields when they are ready.
•    Don’t delete the descriptions in the left column!
•    Don’t lock the form. That will stop you from editing and revising within the form.
•    Do complete the “Learner Information” (A.) of the first table, and Section 1 first.
•    Don’t skip items or sections. If an item does not apply to your study, type “NA” in its field.
•    Do read the item descriptions and their respective Instructions carefully. Items request very specific information. Be sure you understand what is asked. (Good practice for IRB!)
•    Do use primary sources to the greatest extent possible as references. Textbooks are not acceptable as the only references supporting methodological and design choices.
•    Do submit a revised RP if, after approval, you change your design elements. It may not need a second review, but should be on file before your IRB application is submitted.

Scientific Merit

The following criteria will be used to establish scientific merit. The purpose of the review will be to evaluate if the study:

•    Advances the scientific knowledge base.
•    Makes a contribution to research theory.
•    Demonstrates understanding of theories and approaches related to the selected research methodology.


Complete the following steps to request scientific merit approval (SMR) for your dissertation:
Topic Approval
1.     Develop topic and methodological approach:
•    Talk with your mentor about your ideas for your dissertation topic and a possible methodological approach.
•    Collaborate with your mentor to refine your topic into a specific educational research project that will add to the existing literature on your topic.
2.     Complete Section 1 of the RP form.
•    Complete Section 1 addressing the topic and basic methodology and e-mail the form to your mentor for approval. Follow the instructions carefully.
•    Collaborate with your mentor until you have mentor approval for the topic. After you have received mentor approval for Section 1, your mentor will submit these sections to your specialization chair for topic approval via [email protected].
•    The specialization chair will notify you and your mentor of their approval and will send a copy of the approval to [email protected].
•    The SMR team will also review and provide high-level feedback of your RP, which will be communicated to you and your mentor.
Milestones 3 and 4
3.     Complete Remaining RP Sections.
•    After your specialization chair approves the topic and basic methodology, and the SMR team has provided high-level feedback about your research plan, continue to collaborate with your mentor to plan the details of your methodological approach, incorporating feedback from the SMR team.
•    Once you and your mentor have agreed on clear plans for the details of the methodology, complete the remainder of the RP form and submit the completed RP form to your mentor for approval.
•    Expect that you will go through several revisions. Collaborate with your mentor until you have their approval of your RP plan.
•    After you have a polished version, you and your mentor should both review the SMR criteria for each section, to ensure you have provided the requisite information to demonstrate you have met each of the scientific merit criteria.
4.  After your mentor has approved your RP (Milestone 3), s/he will forward your RP to your Committee for their approval (Milestone 4).
•    After you have obtained mentor (Milestone 3) AND committee (Milestone 4) approvals of the completed RP form, your mentor will submit the completed RP via [email protected]  to have your form reviewed for Scientific Merit.
•    Mentor and committee approval does not guarantee SMR approval. Each review is independent and serves to ensure your research plan demonstrates research competency.
Milestone 5
5    (a). RP form in review: The scientific merit reviewer will review each item to determine whether you have met each of the criteria. You must meet all the criteria to obtain reviewer approval. The reviewer will designate your RP as one of the following:
•    Approved
•    Deferred for minor or major revisions
•    Not approved
•    Not ready for review
•    Other
5    (b). If the RP has been deferred:
•    The SMR reviewer will provide feedback on any criteria that you have not met.
•    You are required to make the necessary revisions and obtain approval for the revisions from your mentor.
•    Once you have mentor approval for your revisions, your mentor will submit your RP for a second review.
•    You will be notified if your RP has been approved, deferred for major or minor revisions, or not approved.
•    Up to three attempts to obtain scientific merit approval (SMR) are allowed. Researchers, mentors, and reviewers should make every possible attempt to resolve issues before the RP is failed for the third time. If a researcher does not pass the scientific merit review on the third attempt, then the case will be referred to the research specialists in the School of Business and Technology for review, evaluation, and intervention.
•    While you await approval of your RP, you should be working to complete your IRB application and supporting documents.
•    Once you have gained SMR approval (Milestone 5), you are ready to submit your IRB application and supporting documents for review by the IRB team.
Milestone 6
6.     Submit the Approved RP to the IRB:
•    Once you obtain SMR approval, write your IRB application and accompanying materials.
•    Consult the Research and Scholarship area within iGuide for IRB forms and detailed process directions.
•    You are required to obtain scientific merit approval (SMR) before you may receive IRB approval. Obtaining SMR does not guarantee that IRB approval will follow.
Milestone 7
7. Complete the Research Plan Conference call:
•    Once you have gained approval by the IRB, you are ready to schedule your Proposed Research Conference Call. You may not proceed to data collection until you have completed this call.
•    Work with your mentor and committee to set a date for the conference call.
•    Upon successful completion of the Proposed Research Conference Call, your mentor will complete the corresponding Milestone Report and you are ready for data collection.

Researchers, please insert your answers directly into the expandable boxes that have been provided!

A.  Learner and Program Information
(to be completed by Researcher)
Researcher Name
Researcher Email
Researcher ID Number
Mentor Name
Mentor Email
Spec Chair Email
Committee member
Committee Member

B.  Specialization Chair Approval Title / Topic Approval
(To be completed by Specialization Chair when Section 1 ia approved)
Please insert your electronic signature to certify that topic and title are appropriate to your specialization and return to [email protected].



RESEARCHERS:  Review carefully the Research Plan Instructions, v. 2.41, before you complete this form.
The Instructions are available on iGuide for your use.

Section 1.  Research Problem, Significance, Question(s), Title

1.1 Research Problem
State the research problem your study will investigate, including its background. See Instructions.
1.2 Purpose of the Study
State the purpose of the study. Typically, the purpose is to contribute to knowledge and solve the research problem. See Instructions.
1.3 Significance of the Study.
Describe the significance of your study’s investigation of the research problem.  Include a statement of the study’s particular significance to the field of Organization and Management or Technology. See Instructions.
1.4 Research Question
Write out your research question. A Qualitative study should be led by one open-ended question for a phenomenology; other approaches differ. See Instructions.
1.5 Method overview
Briefly describe the methodologies and methods (data collection and analysis) that will be used to conduct the study.
1.6 Dissertation Title
Do not write the title until Items 1.1-1.5 are complete. See Instructions.


If this RP is for your dissertation (after comps), forward completed Section 1 plus your references gathered so far (section 8) to your Mentor for review and for Specialization Chair’s Approval. (Work on your full Literature Review while waiting for topic approval)

Section 2.     Overall Methodology and Approach
The qualitative approaches accepted for SOBT are ethnography, case study, grounded theory, phenomenology, heuristics, Delphi and exploratory qualitative inquiry research.  Describe the qualitative methodology (for example phenomenology) and research model (for example Giorgi – empirical phenomenology or Moustakas – transcendental phenomenology) you propose to use.
2.1 Research Design
Describe your research design in words. See Instructions.
2.2 Methodology Approach
Qualitative approaches include, among others  exploratory qualitative inquiry, case study, ethnography, grounded theory, phenomenology, and the Delphi technique. If proposing a different/alternative approach than those listed , include information about researcher’s and dissertation committee member(s)’ training in the alternative model. See Instructions.
2.3 Methodological Model
Within the approach, describe the model of that approach adopted for this study. Include references to primary sources for that model. See Instructions.
2.4 Rationale
Discuss how your design is suited to answering your research question(s). See Instructions for details.

Section 3.  Framework, Constructs, Variables, Operational Definitions
3.1 Theoretical/Conceptual Framework
Describe the business theory base that guides or focuses this study or defines the constructs it will investigate. See Instructions.
3.2 Units of Analysis
Descriptions of units of analysis should be consistent with the title and research question. See Instructions.
3.3  Constructs, Phenomena, Issues, or Elements of Interest

List the specific constructs or phenomena that are the focus of the study reflected in the research question and title. Provide citations to the relevant theoretical framework. Number each construct/phenomenon.

Define (i.e., describe fully) each construct/phenomenon listed with references to relevant theoretical framework, if any.

See Instructions.
3.4 Conceptual Definitions
Define (i.e., describe fully) each construct/phenomenon listed in Item 3.3 with references to relevant theoretical framework, if any. See Instructions.
3.5  Observational Definitions (Qualitative)
For each item in 3.3 & 3.4, describe how it will be identified and observed during data collection. See Instructions.
3.6 Rationale
Show how the observational data (Item 3.5) will provide data appropriate to the unit of analysis (Item 3.2) to answer the research question (Item 1.3) properly. See Instructions.
3.7 Contributions to the Field.
Your study should make a contribution to your field based on the approach used to conduct the research:

Case Study
Grounded Theory
Delphi Technique
Exploratory Qualitative Research
Describe how your study is grounded in and/or adds to knowledge in the field of organization and management or information technology.
Section 4.  Population and Sampling
4.1 The Population
Describe the larger group (population) of people, or data in which your study is interested. Do NOT describe the actual sample here. See Instructions.
4.2 The Sample Frame and Sample
Describe the characteristics of your Sample Frame, sample, including (A) demographics, (B) inclusion criteria if any; (C) exclusion criteria if any. See Instructions.
4.3 Sampling Procedures
Describe in detail the (A) recruiting, (B) selecting, and (C) assigning-to-groups procedures you will follow for obtaining participants (your sample). Include citation(s) supporting the sampling methods. See Instructions.
4.4 Sample Size
Describe your intended sample size and how you determined it. Provide citations (primary sources) to support it. If you are investigating more than one group describe all relevant groups. See Instructions.
4.5 Rationale
Describe how selection procedures and sample size are consistent with research question. Indicate resources consulted to make these decisions. See Instructions
4.6 Ethical Considerations
(45 CFR 46; APA Ethical Principles)
Identify ethical issues involved in sampling procedures. (Key Belmont principle: equity) (IRB Application will describe how they are dealt with.) See Instructions)
Section 5.  Role of the Researcher ( QUALITATIVE)
5.1 Role of Researcher: “as instrument”
Describe the role of the researcher as “instrument of data collection” within the  framework of the selected approach and model.

Indicate how potential bias arising from the researcher’s  previous experience or preconceptions will be addressed using such tools as bracketing, journaling or epoché—be specific about how these will be operationalized.

Is there any potential conflict of interest with the proposed sample? If so, indicate how this will be addressed.

See Instructions
5.2 Role of Researcher: Background and training
Describe your background and experience. See instructions.
5.3 Role of Researcher: New Experience
For each data collection method with which the researcher is inexperienced, describe how researcher will demonstrate the necessary skill level in that method. See Instructions.
5.4 Ethical Considerations
(45 CFR 46; APA Principles)
Discuss ethical issues around the researcher’s competence (training and experience). Include consideration of APA (2011) ethical principle of practice and research within competence. See Instructions.
Section 6. Instruments, Field tests, Data Collection: Qualitative

6.1 Data Collection Instruments
Describe each data collection instrument (demographic questionnaires, formal interview protocols, forms, etc.). If none, type N/A. But all methods must be clearly described in 5.1. Indicate how the validity of interview questions has been ensured using a review by an expert panel

See Instructions.
6.2 Field Testing
Describe any field test of any procedures including practice (role-playing) interviews. Field tests require no IRB review. required. See Instructions.
6.3 Data Collection Methods and procedures
Describe each of the planned data collection methods; relate them to the pertinent research question(s). See Instructions.
6.4 Credibility and Transferability
Discuss the criteria for judging your research: credibility, transferability, dependability, trustworthiness  and confirmability.
6.5 Ethical Considerations
(45 CFR 46)
Describe any ethical issues about data collection procedures. (Management plans will be described on the IRB Application, not here.). (Key Belmont principle: beneficence, risk/benefit analysis.) See Instructions.

Section 7. Researcher’s Critical Analysis of Design
7.1 Procedures Diagram
Diagram the step by step procedures from sample recruitment through data analysis. Ensure that there are no procedural confusions. See Instructions.
7.2 Types of Data
For each data collection method, describe the type of data to be generated. Indicate how the data are appropriate for answering the respective research question(s)See Instructions
7.3 Data Preparation
Describe how each set/type (Item 7.1) of data will be prepared for analysis. What software will you utilize? i.e. AtlasTi, nVivo.  See Instructions
7.4 Data Analysis
Describe analysis procedures for each distinct data type (e.g., audiotapes, transcripts, video tape, field notes, photos, etc.). Consider this a recipe, described step-by-step so others can repeat your steps. Ensure that the methods are consistent with chosen methodological models, if any (Item 2.3).  See Instructions
7.5 Data Presentation
Describe how findings and the meaning of your data will be presented to the committee in Chapter Four of dissertation.  See Instructions
7.6 Risk Level Estimate
(45 CFR 46)
Estimate, for each of the following, whether the risk of participant discomfort or harm is minimal or more-than-minimal. Use definition in 45 CFR 46.102(i). When there is more than one procedure, estimate the highest level. (Type “Minimal” or “More than Minimal” after each item.)
See Instructions.
7.7 Assumptions
Identify the key (A) theoretical, (B) topical, and (C) methodological assumptions of the study; provide citations to support their adoption. See Instructions.
7.8 Strengths
Evaluate the strengths of your study. See Instructions.
7.9 Limitations
Evaluate the weaknesses of your study at this time.  Indicate areas to be improved before start of study and areas that cannot be improved. Give reasons for not redesigning any limitations, if any. See Instructions.

Section 8. References
In the field below, provide your references for the seminal research about your topic, and key theorists/researchers associated with the selected methodology. You will continue to build on this list of references for your Chapter 1 Background of the Problem, Chapter 2 Literature Review and Chapter 5, where you will discuss your findings in the context of the literature.
Use proper APA formatting.

Learner:  Stop here and submit to your Mentor for final approval. Continue working on your final literature review while you wait for SMR approval.


Mentor: This form must be approved by all committee members prior to submission for SMR review.  Please send completed and approved RP to [email protected] for SMR review.

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