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1Saint Leo UniversityGraduate Studies in BusinessDBA 765Doctoral Written Comprehensive ExamI. COURSE DESCRIPTION:The Comprehensive Exam

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Saint Leo University

Graduate Studies in Business

DBA 765

Doctoral Written Comprehensive Exam

I. COURSE DESCRIPTION:

The Comprehensive Exam is an independent course of study designed not only as a culmination of the

student’s doctoral studies but also as preparation for the student’s advance to candidacy in dissertation

research and the writing to follow. The doctoral Student will be required to call upon the knowledge

gathered throughout the preceding courses of doctoral studies as well as utilize such knowledge in the

preparation of relevant research questions, formulation of the foundational review of the existing

literature, and a proposal of new research in the field of study. Display of substantive knowledge in the

field along with both qualitative and quantitative research techniques will be examined throughout these

exams.

II. REQUIRED TEXT:

No specific text is required for the completion of this course; however, the following are suggested:

Machi, L. A., & McEvoy, B. T. (2012). The literature review: Six steps to success. 2nd ed. Corwin Press.

ISBN 978-1-4129-6134-9; ISBN 978-1-4129-6135-6 (paperback).

Randolf, J. J. (2009). A guide to writing the dissertation literature review. Practical Assessment and

Research Evaluation, 14(13), June 2009. ISSN 1531-7714.

III. LEARNING OUTCOMES:

Upon completion of this course, students will be able to:

1. Exhibit knowledge of current issues in business management through the formulation of

relevant research questions that are substantively meaningful and ones that intellectually

contribute to the field of study.

2. Demonstrate an advanced writing style commensurate with the Doctoral education level,

together with appropriate American Psychology Association (APA) citations of referenced

work and the formulation of a related bibliography adequate for publication in peer-reviewed

journals.

3. Exhibit knowledge in the functional business areas, including the practical skills for leading

organizations within the legal, social, economic, and global environments of business.

4. Analyze both academic and applied research issues using research and critical-thinking skills.

5. Employ the Saint Leo University core value of personal development through

comprehensively researched and scholarly written assignments.

Assignment and Assessment of Core Value Learning Outcome:

Students will demonstrate Saint Leo University core values of personal development, as well as an

understanding of leadership predicated upon social responsibility, innovation, and accountability; in

addition to the ability to apply this knowledge to issues in business through the preparation and

completion of the Comprehensive Exam.

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IV. METHOD OF ASSESSMENT: A: Comprehensive Exam (90%)

• 2 questions worth 45% each

B: Comprehensive DBA Program Assessment (10%)

Comprehensive Exam (90%):

The Comprehensive Exam will consist of two independent essay questions, each of which must be

passed to the satisfaction of the Committee for advancement to the dissertation stage of the DBA

program.

DBA 765 COMPREHENSIVE EXAM

DBA 765 QUESTION #1:

Describe the background information as an introduction to the research problem and discuss the purpose

of the study. Identify and discuss a theory which helps analyze and understand the problem. Evaluate

the current state of the literature and the theoretical approach which will help solve the problem identified.

Present a model, and briefly discuss the research design. Be sure to include the assumptions and

limitations. Clarify operational definitions for all key terms used in the study. Finally, explain the

importance of the study. Your answer must follow APA format.

Required components for Question #1 (Failure to include all of the following will result in a failing grade

for the question):

• Introduction

• Problem background

• Theory identification and model

• Summary of literature

• Purpose of the study

• Assumptions and limitations

• Importance of study

• Brief discussion of research design

• Operational definitions of the construct(s)

DBA 765 QUESTION #2:

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In detail, describe the research proposal. Specify the step-by-step methods and procedures for the study

including the selection of subjects and a description of any instrument(s) used to collect the data. Present

the model, state each hypothesis, and explain the method(s) selected to conduct the data analysis. Be

sure to describe the reliability, validity, and measurement issues and how they will be addressed. Explain
assumptions and/or limitations. Your answer must follow APA format.

Required components for Question #2 (Failure to include all of the following will result in a failing grade
for the question):

• Subject selection

• Instruments

Model

Hypothesis(es)

Method(s) used to collect the data

Data analysis

Reliability/Validity/Measurement Issues

Assumptions and Limitations

Key

K

KeK

Comprehensive Exam Process:

The Student will have a finite period to craft comprehensive written answers to both examination

questions. Students must complete all examination answers and submit final papers to the course to the

Assignment folder by the following dates:

Question 1 – end of module 4; Sunday @ 11:59pm EST

Question 2 – end of module 6; Sunday @ 11:59pm EST

The Assignment folder is in the Exams and Assessment folder. Students that do not submit the

assignment to the Assignment folder will receive a zero. This is a key program assessment; the results

are used to ensure students are meeting program goals. The Dissertation Chair will distribute all final

papers submitted by the Student to the members of the Dissertation Committee. Each member of the

committee shall individually assign a grade to each assignment submitted by the Student.

Students who receive a passing score of 80% or greater for both questions independently, by at least

two of the three Dissertation Committee Members, PASS the DBA 765 Comprehensive Exam course,

and Students are authorized by the Dissertation Committee to advance to the Dissertation Phase of the

DBA program.

Students who do not receive a passing score of 80% or greater on one of the questions, by at least

two of the three Dissertation Committee Members, FAIL the DBA 765 Comprehensive

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Exam course, and Students are not authorized to matriculate to the Dissertation Phase of the DBA

program. These Students must retake the DBA 765 Comprehensive Exam course utilizing the same

Dissertation Committee. The Student shall only be allowed to take the Comprehensive Exam two times.

Please note:

• The assignment deadline for each of the Comprehensive Exam Questions are final. The

Dissertation Chair and Committee Members must have adequate time to review the final

papers.

• All graduate policies regarding GPA and academic probation/suspension shall apply.

• The Saint Leo University code of Academic Honesty must be adhered to at all times.

• The Student shall only be allowed to take the Comprehensive Exam two times.

• If a retake is necessary, the Student will re-attempt the original questions given.

• Failure of the second attempt of the Comprehensive Exam may result in dismissal from the

program.

Key Assignments:

Certain assignments in this course are designated as Key Assignments. These Key Assignments must

be submitted to the respective assignment folder in the D2L course.

The following are Key Assignments in this course:

1. Comprehensive Exam Question 1

2. Comprehensive Exam Question 2

Comprehensive DBA Program Assessment (10%):
The Comprehensive DBA Program Assessment in this course is provided by Peregrine Academic

Services. The results are used to measure program-level learning outcomes as required by

accreditation authorities. The exam is a graded assignment in this course. It is graded on a curve,

since the exam is not based on a traditional 100-point grading scale (it is a nationally normed exam).

The exam is worth 10% of your course grade. Your score will be converted to a 10-point scale as

follows and automatically populated in the DBA 765 course Gradebook.

Assessment Results Course Score (%)

0-19 0

20-29 2

30-39 5

40-49 6

50-59 7

60-69 8

70-79 9

80 or higher 10

5

Please keep in mind that this exam is a program-level assessment of your academic program

knowledge. As such, it is not expected that you will necessarily know the answer to every question. It is

a standardized test used by many different colleges and universities. You can find detailed instructions

via the link in the Start Here menu.

The following distribution will be used in assigning grades:

Grade

A Exceptional A-
Excellent

B+ Very Good

B Good

Percentage

95% to 100%

90% to 94%

86% to 89%

83% to 85%

Assessment of the Learning Outcomes:

Learning

Outcome
Assessment Method

1 Comprehensive Exam: (Question 1)

2 Comprehensive Exam: (Question 1 – Writing Quality)

3 Comprehensive Exam: (Question 2)

4 Comprehensive Exam: (Question 2)

5 Comprehensive Exam: (Personal Development – Question 2)

SCHEDULE:

Module Topic – Assignment

One Part 1 – General Ground Rules and Communications Standards

The Dissertation Chair will serve as the Primary Reader on the Comprehensive Exam
and as DBA 765 Course Instructor. The Dissertation Committee Members will be
additional readers for the Comprehensive Exam.

Two Part 2 – Exam Development

The student will begin writing Question 1.

Three Part 3 – Question 1 continued

B- Fair

C Marginal

F Failure

80% to 82%

75% to 79%

Below 75%

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The student will continue writing Question 1 and prepare the question for submission to
the Chair. The student will have a finite time period to craft comprehensive written answers
to both examination questions.

Students must complete all examination answers and submit final papers to the course
Assignment folder by the following dates:
• Question 1 – end of module 4; Sunday @ 11:59pm EST

• Question 2 – end of module 6; Sunday @ 11:59pm EST

The Assignment folder link is in the Module 8 folder. Students that do not submit the
assignment to the Assignment folder will receive a zero. This is a key program
assessment; the results are used to ensure students are meeting program goals.

The Dissertation Chair will distribute all final papers submitted by the student to the
members of the Dissertation Committee. Each member of the committee shall individually
assign a grade to each assignment submitted by the student.

Students who receive a passing score of 80% or greater for both questions independently,
by at least two of the three Dissertation Committee Members, PASS the DBA 765
Comprehensive Exam course, and students are authorized by the Dissertation Committee
to advance to the Dissertation Phase of the DBA program.

Students who do not receive a passing score of 80% or greater on one or more of the
three questions, by at least two of the three Dissertation Committee Members, FAIL the
DBA 765 Comprehensive Exam course, and students are not authorized to matriculate to
the Dissertation Phase of the DBA program. These students must retake the DBA 765
Comprehensive Exam course utilizing the same Dissertation Committee. The student shall
only be allowed to take the Comprehensive Exam two times.

Four Part 3 – Administration of the Written Examination Cont.

Response is due for Question 2 – end of module 4; Sunday @ 11:59pm EST

Five Part 3 – Administration of the Written Examination Cont.

Student continues work on Question #2.

Six Part 3 – Administration of the Written Examination Cont.

Response is due for Question 2 – end of module 6; Sunday @ 11:59pm EST

Seven Part 3 – Administration of the Written Examination Cont.

Revisions, edits, and additional changes to examination questions, if necessary.

Eight

Part 4 –Comprehensive DBA Program Assessment Deadline and Grading

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Comprehensive DBA Program Assessment Deadline Sunday @ 11:59pm EST – No

extensions will be granted on this exam – Plan to take ahead of Module 8 to ensure timely

completion.

All three members of the Dissertation Committee shall individually assign a grade to each

written assignment submitted by the Student.

Wherein the student receives a passing approval by the Committee for both questions

independently and collectively, the student shall be done with the Doctoral Written

Comprehensive Exam and shall be authorized to advance to the Dissertation Phase of the

DBA program.

If the student does not receive an overall passing score of 80% or greater for each

question, by at least two of the three Dissertation Committee Members, a failing grade of

“F” shall be assigned to the Student for the course. Any student who Fails the

Comprehensive Exam shall not be allowed to matriculate to the dissertation phase, and

the DBA-765 course must be retaken utilizing the same Dissertation Committee. The

student shall only be allowed to take the Comprehensive Exam two times.

Please note:

• The assignment deadlines for the Comprehensive Exam Questions are final. The

Dissertation Chair and Committee Members must have adequate time to review

the final papers.

• All graduate policies regarding GPA and academic probation/suspension shall

apply.

• Failure of the second attempt of the Comprehensive Exams may result in dismissal

from the program.

XI. GRADING RUBRIC

DBA 765 GRADING RUBRICS – QUESTION #1 (page 1 of 2)

Grading Criteria – CONTENT

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1. Required components for Question #1

(Pass/Fail)

Failure to include these categories will result in a failing grade.

• Introduction

• Problem background

• Theory identification and model

• Summary of literature

• Purpose of the study

• Assumptions and limitations

• Importance of study

• Brief discussion of research design

• Operational definitions of the construct(s)

2. Knowledge, Research Depth, and Critical Thinking (25 points)

• Purpose of study

• Assumptions and Limitations

• Importance of Study

3. Synthesis, Analysis, and Comprehension of the Current Literature (25 points)

• Introduction

• Problem background

• Importance of study

4. Organization, formulation, topic and identification, Key Points (15 points)

• Brief discussion of design

• Operational definitions of the construct(s)

5. Demonstration of Theory Knowledge and Usage of Theoretical Models (15 points).

6. Ethics, Social Responsibility, and/or Core Values (5 points)

7. Proper Use of APA Formatting and Style (5 points)

8. Grammar, Word Choice, and Terminology (5 Points)

9. Composition and Punctuation (5 points)

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS:

Students who receive a passing score of 80% or greater for both questions independently, by at

least two of the three Dissertation Committee Members, PASS the DBA 765 Comprehensive

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Exam course, and Students are authorized by the Dissertation Committee to advance to the
Dissertation Phase of the DBA program.

Students who do not receive a passing score of 80% or greater on one (or both) of the two

questions, by at least two of the three Dissertation Committee Members, FAIL the DBA 765

Comprehensive Exam course, and Students are not authorized to matriculate to the Dissertation

Phase of the DBA program. These Students must retake the DBA 765 Comprehensive Exam

course utilizing the same Dissertation Committee. The Student shall only be allowed to take the

Comprehensive Exam two times

TOTAL AVAILABLE POINTS = 100

DBA 765 GRADING RUBRICS – QUESTION #2 (page 1 of 2)

Grading Criteria – CONTENT

1. Required components for Question #2

(Pass/Fail)

Failure to include each of these categories will result in a failing grade.

• Subject selection

• Instrument(s) (i.e., how constructs will be measured)

• Model

• Hypothesis(es)

• Method(s) used to collect the data

• Data analysis

• Reliability / validity / measurement issues

• Assumptions and limitations

2. Knowledge, Research, Depth, and Critical Thinking – Subject and Sample (20 points)

• Subject selection

• Instrument(s) (i.e., how constructs will be measured)

3. Synthesis, Analysis, and Comprehension – Construct and relationships (25 points)

• Model

• Hypothesis(es)

4. Model measurement (25 points)

• Method(s) used to collect the data

• Data analysis

5. Data issues (10 points)

• Reliability / validity / measurement issues

• Assumptions and limitations

10

6. Ethics, Social Responsibility, and/or Core Values (5 points)

7. Proper Use of APA Formatting and Style (5 points)

8. Grammar, Word Choice, and Terminology (5 Points)

9. Composition and Punctuation (5 points)

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS:

Candidates who receive a passing score of 80% or greater for both questions independently, by
at least two of the three Dissertation Committee Members, PASS the DBA 765 Comprehensive
Exam course, and Candidates are authorized by the Dissertation Committee to advance to the
Dissertation Phase of the DBA program.

Candidates who do not receive a passing score of 80% or greater on one (or both) of the two

questions, by at least two of the three Dissertation Committee Members, FAIL the DBA 765

Comprehensive Exam course, and Candidates are not authorized to matriculate to the

Dissertation Phase of the DBA program. These Candidates must retake the DBA 765

Comprehensive Exam course utilizing the same Dissertation Committee. The candidate shall

only be allowed to take the Comprehensive Exam two times.

TOTAL POINTS AVAILABLE = 100

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