This section describes the assignment of writing a
tutorial paper on Project Management.
- To learn by teaching others about project management
- To publish your work in a public online book
This assignment asks you to prepare a tutorial paper to be used to teach
project management to others. The idea of students teaching others is
nothing new. For sometime it has been clear that when students are asked
to teach others they learn a great deal more than when they study the material
for themselves. This is why medical residents are asked to "lean
one, do one, and teach one." Managers too can learn more from teaching
This assignment pulls together all student's work in one central place to
create an open and free online book on project management. This idea was
first proposed and put into place by Duncan Neuhauser for a course on management
of public health. His experience has shown the utility of having a
cumulative index of student's work online. We are following his lead in
creating a cumulative set of tutorials by students for students.
The idea is relatively simple. You select a topic. If something
on the topic has already been posted, then you take the work of others and
improve it substantially. Once you are done with your draft, you show your
work to another person in the course who will provide you with a written
feedback following a rubric the instructor provides. Revise your work
further and then either submit it to the instructor for inclusion in the online
collection or post it to Wikipedia and submit the URL to the instructor.
You will receive an evaluation and a grade for the paper from the instructor, at
end of the semester.
- Select a topic: Here are some topics for which we are
currently looking for contributions:
- Project risk assessment
- Portfolio project management
- Activity based costing
- Return on project investment and business value of project
- Cost and benefits of electronic health records
- Why projects fail?
- Project management in clinical settings
- Vendor selection and contracting
- Project teamwork and communications
- Remote management of contractors and staff
- Ratings of project management software or electronic health records
- Other topics with instructor's approval
- Check work of other students: Examine the
work of previous students and the work already posted in
Wikipedia. Make sure that you can make significant new
contributions. You can use the work of previous students verbatim, as
long as you include them as authors in the revised manuscript. The
order of the authorship depends on the extent of each person's
contributions. Do not re-invent the wheel.
- Check published literature: Look at
Pubmed and also check
Google scholar to find out scientific progress in the field.
Do not make claims that are not supported by data. You can rely on
papers published in health care as well as papers published outside of
- Draft paper: The draft of the paper must be finished by mid-term.
Write well. Make sure your points are clear and are demonstrated with
appropriate images. Remember that the reader is another student who is
just beginning in the field. Give many examples and provide case
studies. Give steps by step guides. Explain all terms when they
are first mentioned and list them also at end of the paper. Put all
references at end of paper. Make sure that the draft paper has the
- Title page: Choose a title that appropriately describes
the paper. Make it clear that it is a tutorial. For
example, if you are writing a paper on Activity Based Costing, then you
might want to title the paper as "A tutorial on Activity Based Costing."
Include author's names but no contact information or other
- Permission page: See section 7
- Executive summary: The summary should be able to stand
for itself and the reader should understand the scope of the paper from
it. It should refer to each of the major sections of the paper.
A well organized paper will allow you to take a sentence from each
section in the paper to organize the summary.
- Introduction: Discuss why this topic is important.
For example on the paper in Activity Based Costing, you might mention
that managers can understand what to price a service and how the work
process contributes to efficiency of operations. You might want to
mention how prevalent is use of the topic of the paper. For
example, you might want to mention how many papers in PubMed discuss
Activity Based Costing. Discuss who is the audience of the paper
and why they should read the paper.
- Review of the literature: Define the terms used in the paper,
show the relationships among the variables, review the literature
published in this topic.
- Step by step guide: Provide a step by step guide on how
a student can accomplish the tasks you are discussing in the paper.
This is the core of your paper. Give visual demonstrations of the
steps you are describing. Provide sufficient detail so another
student can accomplish the steps you are describing. For
example, if you are writing about Activity Based Costing you would list
the steps as (1) estimate clinic census, (2) estimate personnel costs,
and so on. For each step you would want to include formulas or
other visual guides that can help the reader understand the steps more
fully. For example, for the step on estimating clinic costs you
might want to provide a visual of sources of data for such an estimate.
- Example or case study: Provide an example taking the reader
through all of the steps you have described. Make sure that you
show each step both visually and describe it fully in the text.
- References and links: Give references to literature
reviewed and links to images used from the web.
- Index of terms: Alphabetically list all terms used in
the paper and their definitions
- Reviewers comments: Show peer review comments and extent of revisions done based on reviewer
comments (see section 5)
- Get feedback: Circulate your paper to at least one other
person (preferably someone writing on the same topic) and offer to review
their work as well. Every member of the team must do a separate
review. Send your review to the instructor as well as all of the
authors of the draft paper. Use the following rubric to organize your
response (make comments for each of the sections indicated):
- Report the date you received the draft and the date you
responded to the draft
- Begin with what worked well. Point to specific sections of
the paper and use adjectives liberally to praise the authors.
This is the only place you are allowed to use adjectives, in all
other sections avoid use of adjectives.
- Discuss whether each major point has been made with an
appropriate visual aid.
- Discuss the use of font size to mark paper sections and the
hierarchy of ideas
- Discuss if color has been used appropriately to highlight
- Discuss writing style and errors
- Discuss the organization of the paper.
- Discuss if references are linked to PubMed and other literature.
- Begin with what worked well. Point to specific content
that made reading the paper worthwhile. You can use adjectives
in this section to praise the authors but do not use any adjectives
in remaining sections.
- Discuss if the authors have followed the recommended outline and
whether their departures from the outline make sense.
- Check that the title is appropriate for the paper. Make
sure that the paper does not digress into unrelated materials.
- Discuss the use of reference materials. Make sure that
there are no claims made that are not backed up by evidence from the
- Discuss whether the paper provides sufficient depth to serve as
a tutorial for you or for someone not familiar with the topic.
What could make the paper more useful?
- List what questions you had that were not answered by the paper.
- What you learned:
- Discuss what you learned from the paper that you would try to do
in your own draft. If the topic is new to you, discuss what
- Revise the manuscript: Using the feedback you have received
and what you have learned from your review of work of others, revise the
manuscript. A significant revision must be done, even if you have no
critical comments and even if the original draft was the best paper in the
- Post to the web: Post the revised manuscript to Wikipedia
(send the URL to the instructor) or send the manuscript to the instructor to
post on the course web site. Include the image of a signed permission
after the title page. Here is an example of text that should be on the
"We, the undersigned give permission for posting our work to the web.
We have removed all personal identifiers from this manuscript, except
for our name. We give permission for others to create a derivative
work from this manuscript, as long as we remain an author of the
derivative work and as long as the order of authorship reflects each
author's relative contribution. In case of conflict, the course
instructor makes the final choice of the order of authorship."
- Students who wish to prepare a video instead of the paper can do so.
All videos should also be submitted to peer review before final submission
to the instructor and posting to the web.
- Students who prefer their work to remain private can asked to be
exempted from their name appearing on the work or their work being posted on
- Students who prefer to submit their work for publication elsewhere (for
example trade or academic journals), should do so and indicate the
submission date to the instructor.
This page is part of the course on Project Management. This page was last edited on
01/31/17 by Farrokh Alemi, Ph.D ©Copyright protected.