Like any other day, you went to bed and fell asleep. Next morning, a phone call woke you up, carrying the news that a fire broke out in the office. Being a business owner, you needed to have your disaster plan handy for such catastrophic situations. MBA students, who work towards becoming future entrepreneurs, require full knowledge of implementation of disaster recovery plan in order to ensure the safety of their organization and people working under it. The only way to master the recovery strategies is by practicing them on real life scenarios. Writing assignments is the best way to do that. So here is a step-by-step process of drafting an assignment on disaster recovery plan.
Note: For better understanding, we here present an assignment prompt and guidelines to complete the task along with relevant examples.
How does database backup advance the disaster recovery planning? State the significance of integrating both the database backup and disaster planning and the correspondence between database backup and disaster planning.
If this is the topic, how should you approach it? Spend 2 minutes of your time to understand how a complex assignment like the above can be accomplished with ease.
1. Identify the Key Terms:
Technically, the writer has to start the task by entering keywords in the databases or search engines. In order to do that, he or she has to apprehend the key terms in the assignment question.
If we look at the assignment prompt again, we find keywords like ‘database backup’, ‘advance’, ‘disaster recovery planning’ and ‘significance’. To take the first step in researching, you enter keywords or key terms like ‘the significance of backup database’, ‘advancement of disaster recovery planning’, etc.
Note: Be prepared to read the assignment topic for a few times to understand the dimensions of it.
2. Sieve Relevant Material:
After inserting questions into databases, you are likely to receive an ample amount of data. But you don’t need to use all of them. You may get numerous books, journals, articles on the discussed topic, but you need to select only a few of them.
If we consider the assignment prompt given above, the following references can be used to gather relevant data and information,
Chervenak, Ann, Vivekenand Vellanki, and Zachary Kurmas. “Protecting file systems: A survey of backup techniques.” Joint NASA and IEEE Mass Storage Conference. Vol. 99. 1998.
Denning, Dorothy Elizabeth Robling. Information warfare and security. Vol. 4. Reading: Addison-Wesley, 1999.
Hawkins, Steve M., David C. Yen, and David C. Chou. “Disaster recovery planning: a strategy for data security.” Information management & computer security 8.5 (2000): 222-230.
Mohan, C., Kent Treiber, and Ron Obermarck. “Algorithms for the management of remote backup data bases for disaster recovery.” Data Engineering, 1993. Proceedings. Ninth International Conference on. IEEE, 1993.
Chow, Wing S., and Wai On Ha. “Determinants of the critical success factor of disaster recovery planning for information systems.” Information Management & Computer Security 17.3 (2009): 248-275.
These five references are the most pertinent to the topic. Students can increase/decrease the number of references to be used in the academic paper writing depending on the requirements provided by professors or slant they are willing to take.
3. Analyze the data:
Gathering data and information is only the first step of researching. It is followed by reading the data critically and analyzing them further. While reading and interpreting data, students –
• Question as they read
• Do not necessarily accept other writer’ views blindly
• Identify the positive and negative aspects of the argument
• Distinguish and assess the presented arguments of other authors’
•Form opinion on what they have read so far.
Ask questions when you decide to use non-academic sources (like newspaper) in writing.
• Is the presented data and information meaningful and useful to your research?
• Is it difficult to identify how results can be used or applied to the study?
Students are expected to go beyond the provided reading list. But remember most academic writing uses academic (peer reviewed) sources. So, you need to be careful while choosing, analyzing or interpreting data. Here are a few don’ts of researching an academic topic:
Most authors state…
Who are these authors?
Assumptions without evidence:
‘Intuition, the key to good criticism’
What evidence backs this theory?
Emphasis on the past:
‘Artistes have always initiated social change’
The writer needs to present evidence and examples against this claim
4. Plan the Assignment:
After gathering, grouping and interpreting data, the writer needs to chalk out a plan of how they write effectively and save time later. The planning should include,
• Looking at research notes and deciding how these notes come together under the main section of the paper
• Creating a concept map that addresses tasks like analysis, thinking, planning and writing.
5. Structure the Assignment:
When students have their concept map ready at hands, they need to create a structure for assignment.
Note: The structure is created to guide you. It can be altered, revised and upgraded as new ideas and thoughts come to you as you write.
To create a detailed structure, you need to plan the whole assignment at a paragraph level. You need to think about main ideas that each paragraph carry and write the topic sentence one by one. After writing them, you need to check whether it synchronizes well or it needs some revisions.
Note: Some paragraphs carry more than one main idea. But paragraphs seem clearer when it includes one idea.
Here is an example of the assignment structure
Strategies used in disaster recovery planning
Importance of integration of database backup and disaster planning
You can expound the outline in more detailed manner or keep it simple like this. It completely depends on students.
6. Pen Down the Ideas:
An assignment is segregated in different parts. Each section of the assignment has its own purpose to serve like the introduction of the assignment states intentions of the research, basic information and background of the topic for readers’ general understanding. Remember academic tasks do not use headings like introduction, conclusion or body. But for students’ understanding, here we have used ‘introduction’ and ‘conclusion’ as headings.
• Writing the introduction:
An introduction is like a shadow of the whole assignment. As a reader, you only can see the outline of it, but not all of it. An ideal introduction highlights the background information of the topic, reasons for choosing the topic and more importantly introduce main ideas. While including the background, perhaps you could explain the title in your own words. When you state the purpose of the topic, do not forget to include a problem or controversy related to the topic (if any).
Here is an example:
This study is carried out to understand how the database backup advances disaster recovery planning and significance of both database backup and disaster recovery planning in a business. This report is divided into several segments describing the importance of database backup and planning for disaster recovery…
• Writing the Main Body:
We do not usually use ‘main body’ or ‘body’ as a heading. Instead, we give subject related headings in the content. The main body comprises a number of paragraphs that advances the research to the final frontier. Each paragraph contains a number of sentences which develop new ideas and/or expand upon exiting ones. The succession of well-structured paragraphs leads the audience reading a logical and coherent argument. It is advised to keep the outline in front of you while elaborating the ideas in writing. It gives you a sense of confident that you are going in the right direction. In case, you come up with a great new idea in the writing stage, do incorporate it. If the structure needs some revision, do it for the sake of the quality of the assignment. After all grades depend on it.
• Structure of the Ideal Paragraph:
1. An assignment paragraph should start with an introductory sentence which tells the readers the purpose of the paragraph and introduces to the main idea.
2. Evidence and examples should be included against the topic sentence or introductory line. The objective of incorporating evidence and examples is to strengthen the argument.
3. You need to state the connection between the presented evidence and the topic and also explain these examples/quotations support your claims.
4. You sum up the paragraph by drawing together the main idea mentioned in the content.
Here is an example of a first main body paragraph
Database backup refers to a process of making extra copies of data, which is necessary for future use (Technopedia, 2016). This important data is stored in some other place, not in the same place where the main data has been kept. The main purpose of the database backup is to secure the main data against the loss. Due to an unexpected occurrence, if the company loses the main data, the backup data can be retrieved and used. Not for recovering data, database backup is also used for retaining data for longer periods of time…
Here is an example of a second main body paragraph:
The recovery from the potential disaster is important (Microsoft, 2008). In order to keep the database secured from the disasters, a well designed database backup is needed. Data recovery is focused on the processes and policies, which helps the organization to survive worst natural disasters or man-made disasters. Hence, disaster planning is required to preserve the data and recover it with the help of the information systems by implementing different technologies (Bartkowki, Buitlear & Kalicki, 2012)…’
Here is an example of a third main paragraph:
Strategies used in disaster recovery planning:
Strategies for data recovery plan depend on the area in which the organization deals in. Setting a security protocol requires cost and time from the company. The organization has to undergo an analysis if cost benefit, so that they can be able to determine which strategy suits best in terms of effectiveness and providing the cost benefit (Gorman, 2014)…
Here is an example of a fourth main paragraph:
Importance of integration of database backup and disaster planning
A company recovers from a disaster when the data is restored once again in its place. The database backup and disaster recovery planning go hand in hand as they cannot be implemented properly without each other’s help (Mullins, C.S.,2012). The implementation of recovery strategies helps the management of the organization in many ways. The reason is, the database assists identifying the data, which has to be stored. On the other hand, recovery planning suggests the best suitable plan for recovering and protecting them from any loss…
• Write the Conclusion:
Generally, conclusion summarizes main ideas of the assignment and reminds the readers the significance of the discussed topic. The audience has to be convinced that you have answered the question clearly. It is advised that you should link your conclusion back to the title or introductory paragraph to help readers see the bigger picture.
Note: the length of the conclusion should be 10% of the whole assignment.
Here is an example of conclusion:
It can be concluded that any organization should put emphasis on creating data backup strategies and disaster recovery plans, so that organization remain unharmed during potential disasters. Keeping database backup is essential for making the business function smooth and hassle-free. It not only saves the cost of the company, but also saves time and efforts of the organization…
It is not an easy task after all. You may face numerous challenges while accomplishing the task. However, it is OK to make mistakes unless your grades are dependent on it. When it does, it is advised that students should have a plan B ready at hands.
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