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MERLOT II


    

Peer Review


Company Data

by Susan Frey
 

Ratings

Overall Rating:

4.75 stars
Content Quality: 4.75 stars
Effectiveness: 5 stars
Ease of Use: 4.75 stars
Reviewed: Dec 26, 2006 by Business Editorial Board
Overview: This interactive, 7-section, basic, tutorial is designed to help individuals develop an effective research strategy to find the right information about companies located primarily in the United States. Among the resources presented are: EDGAR, Marketline Business Information Center, LexisNexis Academic, Selectory Online, and ABI/Inform . The tutorial ends with a printable checklist.
Learning Goals: The guide is specifically designed for Indiana State University freshman and sophomores, but is appropriate for any adult learner who is unfamiliar with searching for company data. Fundamental concepts of conducting company research are linked to illustrated, step-by-step guides, demonstrating how to search a variety of online business resources. Embedded quizzes offer the user the opportunity for gauging their mastery of the material.
Target Student Population: This tutorial is used by students in freshman English and business classes, distance learners, and university career center clients doing research prior to interviews.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills: None
Type of Material: Tutorial
Recommended Uses: This module would be very useful in introductory business classes or general education classes that require research on company financials or general company background.
Technical Requirements: Internet access with a standard browser. The tutorial does run better on Netscape.

Evaluation and Observation

Content Quality

Rating: 4.75 stars
Strengths: Company Data is an excellent, stand alone module that teaches and demonstrates company research methodology and research sources for U.S. based companies. Information is current and relevant, providing accurate information. The module is clear and concise and informed by scholarship. The amount of content is adequate, well integrated and summarized, making Company Data an admirable self-contained tutorial.
Concerns: While not necessarily a concern, users should realize that some of the links are specific to the authorÂ’s institutional setting, but with proper supplemental information the module is adaptable to any college or university. In addition, some of the links require users to be registered before they can be used.

Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths: This tutorial covers effectively the concepts used to teach students how to research company data and financial information. Learning objectives are included, with concepts reinforced progressively. Important terms are highlighted and defined. A two question interactive self-assessement appears at the end of each segment. Overall, the module is a excellent teaching tool for learning and/or reviewing how to conduct company research online.
Concerns: None

Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

Rating: 4.75 stars
Strengths: Screen layouts are nicely designed and eye pleasing. Use of color is excellent. A section heading table of contents is included in the left frame of every screen as well as a link to a more detailed site map. Navigation and links function as intended with the exception of those shown on the site map. Scolling per screen display is minimal. Quiz questions provide a link to a review of content for incorrect answers given. In terms of use, Company Data as a tutorial set is very easy to read and understand.
Concerns: Once a quiz question review link is chosen users cannot return to the next question without reading and/or clicking through all prior screens. Links on the site map lead to a dead end.