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COB 300 - Integrative Business

This guide helps students research their business plan proposals. Be advised this is NOT a comprehensive checklist for all topics that should be researched.

Document information as you search

Pasting a bunch of links into a document and making sense of them later will be counterproductive on this project. Map sources to exhibits - highlighting exactly what information it provides - throughout the research process.

This spreadsheet can be copied into your Google Drive and provides a method for tracking what information comes from each source.

Two other tips: 

  • Use persistent or permalinks. Copying the URL from the browser won't always reopen the search results.
  • Adopt a group file-naming convention to make your documents easier to search

Unlike other projects, starting the citation process the week it's due will cause unnecessary stress. Save valuable time by using this documentation method.


Recommended resources

Use a citation manager

Your business plan requires 2 types of citations: In-text citations in the written part of your plan and an alphabetized bibliography of citations at the end.

Remember:The goal of every in-text citation is to direct your readers back to the bibliography so they can verify the information on their own. They work together.

To ensure consistency, I suggest the free citation manager Zotero. Sources can be managed in group libraries, with PDFs included, and shared among team members. 

Recommended resources (Zotero)

Recommended resources (other help with APA style)

Use APA 7th style to cite your sources

For your business case or  business plan's bibliography or reference list, use JMU Libraries' COB 300 APA guide to check your work.


Use in-text citations

For attribution to sources within your plan or your case study (in-text citations), use one of these three methods to create APA in-text citations:

Method Example
Author-date signal phrase In a 2017 article, John Smith reported ...
Author-date in parentheses  ... (Smith, 2017). Note: Use this method at end of a sentence
Author name in signal phrase, date in parentheses  Smith (2017) argues that ...


Can you review our bibliography?

Neither the business librarian nor the peer research advisers has time to review the bibliographies for each student team. Therefore, we can't review any of them - it wouldn't be fair to do otherwise. 

Instead, take advantage of the Complete APA Citation Guide for COB 300 and the Google Slides tutorials throughout the site that show where to get the information you need to cite popular business resources.