Explain,hat changes should we apply to our current information systems?’

Case Study Questions

You are required to answer the following questions based on the From Theme Park to Resort: Port Aventura case study:

  1. Using the Five Forces framework, the Value Chain and ONE other tool,
    conduct an in-depth internal and external analysis of Port Aventura [20 marks]
  2. Discuss the specific benefits / limitations of IS/Internet applications for the
    [10 marks]
  3. What information systems would you recommend to the company
    to solve their problems? Discuss the possible options and choose the
    most appropriate solution. [20 marks]
  4. What is the most appropriate acquisition method for your chosen solution?
    Give your reasons. [10 marks]
  5. Discuss the confidentiality / security risks associated with using an
    information system and recommend potential solutions for the Port Aventura
    [15 marks]

[Total: 75 marks]

MARKING GUIDELINES FOR THIS ASSIGNMENT

Performance in this summative assessment is judged against the following criteria:

  • Case Study Questions (above) 75%
  • Structure/presentation & clarity of writing 5%
  • Scope & relevance of literature sources 10%
    (including research, journals, etc)
  • Rigour of argument / Synthesis 10%

 

Total = 100%

 

Assessment Criteria Marks
  Possible Actual
S1 Case Study Analysis & Solutions Possible Actual 75%  
Q1 Strategic Analysis / Prob. Recognition (14 marks)

(Tools: 5FF/ VC/……           = 6 marks)

 

20

     
Q2 Specific IS/Internet Benefits (5) / Limitations (5) for Port Aventura 10      
Q3 Recommended solution 20      
Q4 Acquisition method (Recommendation: 4; Justification: 6) 10      
Q5 Security risks (7) & solutions (8) 15      
S2 Structure / Presentation & Clarity 5%  
S3 Rigour of Argument / Synthesis 10%  
S4 Scope / Pertinence of literature 10%  
  Quality of bibliography; Harvard Referencing 5  
  Use of supporting data / sources 5      
  Total     100  

 

The Case Study: From Theme Park to Resort: Port Aventura

Introduction

It was Saturday, 23 May 2009, and the weather forecast predicted a clear, sunny day. With the Spanish school year having just ended, it was one of the first days of a large influx of visitors to Port Aventura. The resort was operating at full capacity. It was past noon, and Fernando Aldecoa, Director of Finance at Port Aventura, was on watch duty, walking through the park. Watch duty had been implemented as a practice a few years prior and affected all managers and directors who rotated duties – once every 4 weeks – spending an entire day inside the theme park. Watch duty didn’t end until the last car left the parking lot. It was recognized as hard but extremely useful in order to `live the business’: walking through the theme park, attending shows, eating at the restaurants, and visiting the golf courses and hotels. In short, it put managers in the customer’s shoes.

Fernando walked by one of the areas of the amusement park known as China, one of the five focus areas in the park in addition to Mediterrania, Polynesia, the Far-West and Mexico. The China area recreated the landscape and the buildings of the Asian giant. China is also where the biggest attraction in the park is located: the Dragon Khan Rollercoaster. In the vicinity of the latter, Fernando had agreed to meet Mercedes de Pablo, Managing Director of the resort, who was also on watch duty that day.

`Boy is it hot today, Fernando! What a day to have watch duty,’ commented Mercedes amicably.

`With the hot wind coming from the west, we’ll have the water and ice cream trolleys working at full capacity,’ joked Fernando.

Both had agreed to meet for lunch and they headed to La Hacienda restaurant, located in the Mexico area of the park. On the way to the restaurant they consulted their smart phones which indicated the number of visitors who were then inside the park as well as forecasts at closing and a comparison of these figures with the daily budget estimates made by the Planning Department.

`What a day!’ commented Fernando. `If we have 31,000 visitors now, we’ll reach 36,000 with afternoon ticket sales. I think Planning has hit the target again.’

Meanwhile, Mercedes looked around her. The way she was dressed was peculiar, with her smart phone in one hand and a walkie-talkie dangling from her belt, as well as the fact that she wasn’t sweaty. But it wasn’t as peculiar as the eight guests who line up before her. They were wearing pleated pants, immaculate polo shirts and ID tags from a well-known insurance company.

`I believe next year’s budget is ambitious given the current crisis,’ commented one of them.

`Yes,’ replied his partner. `But the chance to implement our national expansion program can represent a great leap forward for the company. We have to be ready.’

Mercedes was listening to the conversation when Fernando said, `They rented the Chinese theatre for the day and are presenting the company’s strategic plans for the coming years. They’ve brought together all the territorial delegates and the department heads, which should be around 200 people. The general manager comes here every summer with his family. He lives near Tarragona. He’s a regular customer. He wanted to bring his entire team here to give a different feel to the meetings they hold every year.’

`When we inaugurate the convention centre,’ continued Fernando, `we’ll be able to hold a greater number of corporate events and offer differentiating services.’

`What makes us different,’ replied Mercedes, `is that they can spend the rest of the day in the park, enjoy the rides, carry out group activities, spend all day outdoors; in short, they can work and really disconnect at the same time!’

`Good afternoon. Two for lunch?’ asked the restaurant hostess.

Fernando replied, nodding his head yes, when the girl replied, `We’ll have your table ready in a minute; wait here, please.’

‘Fernando,’ commented Mercedes, `I’ve been thinking about the different types of customers we currently have. I think it’s time we got to know them a little better.’

`We’ve been adapting our commercial strategy to the different customers,’ replied Fernando. `We have park customers, hotel customers, golf course, customers, and corporate customers who hold events. The Sales Department is doing a great job of knowing them better: they conduct surveys, they know the customer segments by nationality, age, length of stay by park zone, family units … They even know if the customers have liked the rides or not! We know the customer profiles very well and we are doing a great job of adapting to them.’

`I am not referring to the work of the Sales Department.’ said Mercedes. `What I mean is that we don’t need averages, majorities or standard deviations. We need to know each customer! Where do they eat? How much do they spend? Do they stay at the hotels? Do they come to the park 5 times every season? Do they play golf? We have to be able to recognize them when they arrive at hotel reception. And then, send them an e-mail when they return home in order to know if they enjoyed their stay. And, in addition, we need to send them a greeting on their child’s birthday. Are you following me?’

`Mercedes, look around you. How many of these visitors’ names do we know? Maybe 5% or 10% perhaps? It’s difficult to know every customer. The technologies we have weren’t designed for that. We’re not a bank! And you’re not only talking about knowing their names, but also their preferences, their opinions, how much they spend …,’ replied Fernando.

`We have to reach a point where we know all the corporate event participants and be able to offer them special deals so they come to play golf here. We have to make sure they know about the hotels and then bring their families on vacation. Another example is customers who have season passes. I can’t believe that we don’t know which season pass-holder comes the most during the year, or which one has eaten most often in our restaurants. We should have some details about some of them!,’ responded Mercedes.

`We have that type of information,’ replied Fernando. `But the volume of information this generates is huge, and we are still devising ways to collect it. Right now we’re considering different application scenarios that could help with this type of cross-cut view you’ve mentioned. But on the other hand, we want something that will serve for the whole resort. Customers who have season passes are a small group.’

`Come with me, please. Your table is ready,’ interrupted the nervous waitress.

`Serving 4000 meals would be enough to frighten anyone,’ thought Mercedes, `especially if it’s your first day at work as appears to be the case with this poor girl.’

`Poor thing. Today’s her baptism by fire,’ commented Mercedes out loud.

But Fernando wasn’t listening. While passing through the different dining areas and tables he was thinking about what Mercedes had requested. `Perhaps we do need to know our customers better, but … Is it possible? Is the information we have reliable? Which customers do we start to work on? What changes should we apply to our current information systems?’

Port Aventura history

In the mid-1980s the Walt Disney Company (Disney) had plans to build a theme park in Europe similar to those they already had in the US. Many European countries, including Spain, had approached Disney about setting up the park in their own countries. In 1988 Disney decided ultimately that the park would be located on the outskirts of Paris.

The Catalan Government did not relent in its determina­tion to build Spain’s first theme park in Catalonia. To this end they contacted Anheuser Busch, owner of the Busch Gardens theme parks, about building a park in Catalonia together with a consortium of Catalan companies. In 1992, and with an investment of approximately 300 million euros, construction began on the park. Construction lasted approximately two years, and, on 1 May 1995 the park named Port Aventura located in the province of Tarragona in northeast Spain and approximately 100 km from Barcelona was officially opened. At the outset, the theme park was organized into five different thematic areas: Mediterrania, Polynesia, China, the Far-West, and Mexico. Each of these areas had at least one outstanding ride, though the star was the Dragon Khan rollercoaster, whose peculiar shape formed the park skyline.

 

Since its inauguration, the park’s management policy was to continue investing in new rides and other attractions and expand the park (Table 1). In mid-1998, after having carried out major renovations on the majority of park attractions, the park accepted an offer from the American company, Universal Studios, to become a shareholder in Port Aventura in order to build its European holiday destination. After the arrival of Universal Studios, the park continued its development plan and built two 4-star hotels and a water park, the Caribe Aquatic Park. The theme park, together with the hotels and the water park, was to be the first major Universal Studios Resort in Europe and it was renamed Universal Mediterrania. In 2004, Universal Studios sold all its shares of Universal Mediterrania to the financial institution La Caixa (www.lacaixa.es) who became the maximum shareholder (La Caixa controlled 80% of the stock). But by contract and in exchange for a fee, Port Aventura was guaranteed continued commercial exploita­tion of the Universal brand and its products and technology.

In order to adjust to seasonal adjusted demand, Port Aventura continued promoting shows. Likewise, it con­tinued to invest in new rides and consolidated the supply of new business lines: three golf courses, a convention centre, a shopping mall, and hotels (Table 1). In 2008, Port Aventura had 3.7 million visitors (see the Appendix). The visits were divided among: Port Aventura theme park (3.3 million visitors), the Caribe Aquatic Park (260,000 visitors), the Beach Club complex (60,000), and the hotels with 250,000 visitors who generated 780,000 overnight stays. These numbers represented sales of E166 million. At that time, Port Aventura had nearly 4000 employees.

The successive park enlargements and future projects had changed the initial park idea by changing the types of customers, as well as their behaviour and the type of stay.

Table 1 Change in main investments

Year       New rides, hotels, and golf courses         Investment (E million)

1995      (Initial investment)                                                    300

1996      Stampida                                                                            9

1999      Fiestaventura                                                                   7

2000      Sea Odissey                                                                     27

2001      Temple of Fire                                                                16

2002      Caribe Aquatic Park, Port Aventura                    108

Hotel and El Paso Hotel

2003      Caribe Hotel                                                                    53

2005      Hurakan Condor                                                              6

2006      Beach Club and show renewals                              11

2007      Furius Baco                                                                      17

2008      Golf courses (45 holes)                                               40

2009      Convention Centre and Gold River Hotel            95

Source: Port Aventura.

Port Aventura organisation

Since taking over as Managing Director in 2004, Mercedes de Pablo focused on imprinting her vision of an integrated resort throughout the organisation. Accordingly, she designed an organisation that enabled the different departments to provide service to the diverse business lines (park, hotels, golf courses, and events).

Mercedes created the `Analysis and Strategic Planning’ area as part of the Commercial Management department. This new area would centralize the management of park revenues. For instance, they decided and set pricing and resort commissions: the price of a day ticket (E44 in 2009), the price of each overnight stay (which varied daily on the basis of the actual and estimated occupation), park food prices, commissions paid to agencies and tour operators, event prices, etc. Accordingly, Commercial Management integrated and coordinated income genera­tion, the sales processes and the packaging of services for all the businesses at Port Aventura.

 

With this same global vision Mercedes de Pablo also restructured the Operations department into areas tied to the diverse service lines and responsibility: shows, restaurants, shops, entertainment and park operations (admissions, parking, and cleaning), and hotels. Each group was specialized in the operational management of an area, from the processes and procedures to recruitment and training, thus promoting specialization and rotation regardless of the business to which they provided service. For instance, the hotel restaurant resources were able to exchange positions with the park or golf restaurants on the basis of needs since they all had a single manager, Restaurants & Food Services.

The support areas were structured into: Human Resources, responsible for carrying out hiring and the specific training for many of the park’s areas (each summer requires more than 3000 employees when the park is operating at full capacity); Technical Services, responsible for preventive maintenance and emergency repairs; Legal and Central Services, in charge of general purchases and legal and logistics management; Administration and Finance, responsible for providing back-up support to billing and the deployment strategy, implementation and maintenance of the information systems; and Resort Development, whose goal was to have a holistic view of the projects that were part of the park’s expansion process, maintaining this view beyond the park’s day-to-day operations.

Communications with the customer

Port Aventura’s media plan had always been characterized by its targeting of mass media communications channels (television, newspapers, radio, and outdoor advertising). On a segmented basis, promotional campaigns (basically discounts on prices) were carried out focusing on large collective groups (Carnet Jove, LaCaixa, Coca-Cola, etc.). Most of the promotional campaigns involved a call-to-­action (902 telephone number) and the product Ho­tel + Ticket.

The significant publicity efforts were concentrated on opening and low visitor months such as March and April, and in the autumn and winter using the appeal of Halloween and Christmas. The Halloween and Christmas shows were new proposals intended to adjust to seasonal adjusted demand and extend the season until December. On the other hand, they also attempted to lengthen the visitors’ stay during the same day, introducing fireworks, nightclubs, and discos.

In the more recent years, Port Aventura had put more emphasis on viral communication campaigns via the Internet, but the exploitation of one-to-one communication channels (e-mail and telephone) remained low and was limited to those members who had become fans of Port Aventura by registering on the corporate website. Accord­ingly, the Marketing department faced the enormous challenge of having to gather and exploit the maximum amount of customer information possible in order to know the customer better and implement personalized services.

Knowledge about the customer

This need to know the customer better led the Marketing department to use customer data obtained at the different contact points – that is, hotel reservations and check-in. And, when this was not sufficient, they adopted strategies to obtain new information from entry and exit surveys (some 200 daily) and, recently, obtaining visitor `migratory movements’ inside the park and hotels by giving a Global Positioning Systems (GPS) to specific customers. By exploiting the information that Port Aventura already had and with the support of market analysis consulting specialists, they were able to identify different behaviors, profiles and origins, which were structured into 13 resort customer clusters (see Table 2).

Table 2 Port Aventura client clusters

Spain: 5 clusters UK 4 clusters France: 4 clusters
·      Enthusiastic parents

·      Independent youth

·      Fans

·      Farsighted parents

·      Halloween

•          Beach families

·           Young partners

·           Whimsical/Impulsive

·           Families lagging behind

  • Enthusiastic parents
  • Independent Youth
  • Whimsical/Impulsive
  • Escapists

 

However, although identifying the various clusters was a first step, the sales and marketing areas had always expressed regret over the low traceability of the information since it was impossible to link each of the clusters to specific individuals. The surveys were anonymous, and the process of obtaining information from personal data (hotel reservations and check-in) was incomplete or inaccurate – for instance, a lack of complete information on all family members and no contact information such as e-mails – thus limiting their ability to offer specific and personalized promotional campaigns. As the Sales Director added, `The most reliable information that we have is from the Clients Club – customers with season passes. However, the new businesses that we are launching will change our customer structure, and we have to know the customer better.’

Information systems

The Port Aventura Information Systems Department (IS) was part of the Administration and Finance Management department led by Fernando Aldecoa. Robert Magi, Director of IS, commented that he had seen the growth of the resort since its beginnings. His 14 years of experience had enabled him to follow the evolution from theme park to resort as few within the organization had. During his experience at Port Aventura, Robert had adapted the information systems to each of the changes the company had decided to implement, adopting the strategy of looking for reliable, robust, and flexible tools for the changing environment to which he had become accustomed.

In 2009 the IS department had three sub-areas:

  • The `infrastructure’ team, responsible for the installation and maintenance of hardware and communications – data and voice – and for providing support to infrastructure equipment – that is, PCs, network devices, reprography equipment, etc. In 2009 this sub-area had nine employees.
  • The `administration and exploitation of information systems’ team was responsible for the operation and administration of the central servers and databases. This sub-area had nine employees.
  • And the `information systems team’ was responsible for the design, planning, development, and maintenance of the applications required by the business areas. The nine employees in this sub-area were specialized by application. Hence, they tried to imple­ment applications with a high degree of standardization in order to outsource their management and main­tenance.

Information systems architecture

Port Aventura was one of the pioneers in the sector to implement SAP R/3. Port Aventura decided to undertake this innovative project in 1995 in order to lay the foundations for back-office administration in the future and thus provide a solid base for the integration of future applications. They implemented various modules: Financial Accounting, Controlling, Sales and Distribution, Human Resource, Materials Management, Investment Management. In 2009 the SAP application had 260 users.

The IS architecture in 2009 was characterized by a hospitality management tool (Prestige), which was running in all the resort’s hotels and reservations centre (or `contact centre’). Prestige allowed for the integrated management of hotels, from the reservation process and guest management (room assignments, alloca­tion of rooms, check-in process, charges management, and billing) to the internal management of the hotel (housekeeping and maintenance control, etc.). Maintenance and updating of Prestige was outsourced to an IT partner.

Another of the key applications for resort management was Galaxy. Galaxy supported the sales and printing of park tickets and read the bar codes at the park entrances which included 20 turnstiles. With the introduction of Galaxy in 2005, Robert Magi was able to develop an agile ticketing system using various sales channels (ticket office at the park, agencies, and Internet) and, at the same time, exercise greater control over the visitors since Galaxy, by reading the bar codes, allowed the company to know the type of entry: day, afternoon, second consecutive day, free pass, season pass, etc. and the time of entry. Galaxy also provided real-time information about park visitors via smart phones to all operations managers and area directors, as well as providing daily attendance forecasts prepared by the `Analysis and Strategic Planning’ area, and daily maximum attendance estimates based on forecast calculations made by a custom-made application.

 

Other resort applications included: Concept Golf, used to manage the three golf courses; the Clients Club which was a database of customers with season passes; Storeflow, used for the sales in shops and restaurants at the resort; the ‘Website fans,’ application on the Port Aventura website for those who wanted access to contents and offers that matched their preferences; Presence, used to manage the contact centre; and the Surveys database which contained the results from the surveys conducted with customers at the resort.

In view of the variety of applications needed to cope with the different resort activities, one of Robert Magi’s main concerns was how to integrate the applications in order to encourage single management at the resort and to remove the intra- and inter-business barriers that might be perceived by customers. In that sense, Robert had led several projects such as the development of hotel room keys that allowed entry into the park through the access turnstiles, payment in the park’s shops and restaurants, payment of golf course fees and, of course, access to their hotel rooms.

Each of the company’s systems was geared to the operative specialization of each of the different areas. The following are the different applications, the departments in which they are used, and the approximate number of users of each application (Table 3)

Table 3: IS applications

Application         Department/area     Number of users

Galaxy                  Operations                               50

Prestige               Hotels                                         50

Concept Golf     Golf                                            20

Clients                  Club Sales                                  10

Storeflow            Shops and restaurants         400

Presence             Contact centre                        40

Gathering customer data

Clients Club

During 2008 approximately 35,000 season passes were sold. There were three available types: Silver, Gold (customers who held a Silver Card for 4 years) and Platinum (including golf). The prices ranged from E130 (Silver/Gold Card) to E330 for a Platinum Card. Buying a season pass allowed unlimited access to park facilities, free parking, shop and restaurant discounts, subscription to a bi-monthly maga­zine called Port Aventura, and attendance to exclusive events (movie sneak previews, children’s workshops, gymkhanas, etc.). The market for this product was concentrated in the provinces of Tarragona and Barcelona and was geared towards families with children.

The Clients Club information was very precise because, in order to acquire a season pass, customers had to go to booths located at the park entrance and, later on, in urban centres of the main cities to which the product was focused (Tarragona, Reus, and Vila-seca) at the start of each season (February-March). At each booth, registration and payment forms were filled in and clients provided the data needed to link season passes to family groups. The sales process through the registration form allowed Port Aventura to obtain high-quality data: personal information, contact data, and family group, all of which were very welcomed by the Commercial department. At the same time, however, at the Commercial department they were aware of some customers’ complaints regarding the slowness of the renewal and payment procedures for their season passes through the website. Every year customers buying season passes had to follow the same process as if it were their first year.

In addition to the registration form, Clients Club members were recorded in the Galaxy application each time they entered the park, in the Prestige application when they made a reservation at a hotel and in Storeflow when they bought something inside the park (they had to swipe their season pass through a point of sales terminal in order to obtain the Clients Club discount). However, none of the applications (Galaxy, Storeflow and Prestige) were able to cross-reference information with the Clients Club database, as the only reports generated by these systems were limited to aggregated sales volume by product type (they knew how many Clients Club members had entered the park that day, but not who).

Hotel

The process of obtaining customer information at the hotels varied depending on the moment in which the data were generated.

  • Reservations: The high dependency on travel agents and tour operators limited the volume and quality of information received. Oftentimes, the information was adjusted to only what was strictly necessary in order to reserve a room. Reservations were done through the contact centre where operators (approximately 40) responded to calls from travel agencies and introduced the information received by fax from tour operators. In order to expedite administrative tasks with these intermediaries (travel agencies and tour operators), the company decided in early 2007 to implement a commu­nications systems that allowed the intermediaries to reserve a room directly in the Port Aventura system through a web interface. The main problems with managing reservations through contact centre operators stemmed from the need for agility in making reserva­tions, agility which often required entering customer data again without previously looking up the customer’s historical information. This limited the possibility of identifying repeating customers and made it more difficult to make queries on the customers’ historical records. Additionally, and in order to reduce the dependence on intermediaries, the team that managed the reservation website attempted to enhance direct booking through a webpage from which they could analyse the ideal type of information to request and evaluate the quality of the information received.
  • Check-in: The check-in process was also influenced by tour operators: the unloading of buses, massive check­-ins and the need for agility and flexibility led to the execution of a pre-check-in service which expedited the issuance of hotel keys and park entry tickets as quickly as possible.

Finally, the knowledge about the hotel customers’ behaviour in the park was limited to global data provided by Galaxy (park entry but not when the customer left the park since there are no exit turnstiles with bar code readers) and some data derived from room charges while staying at the park (a service only used by 3-5% of all hotel customers).   .                                                                                  .

Park

The theme park consumers generated the most revenue and continued to do so even after the park expanded and launched its diversification plan. Park consumers generated 3 of every 4 euros invoiced by Port Aventura. However, the park customer data, which were generated from Galaxy, were limited to global data by ticket type sales and to aggregated data on sales generated in shops and restau­rants. Within this context, the Marketing department became interested in conducting surveys inside the park as well as at both the entrance and exits. Through these actions they could identify geographic origins, family units, length of stay, and different levels of satisfaction inside. However, they still had no personalized information by customer in order to implement personalize services.

Golf

The three golf courses were inaugurated in 2007. In the development of the strategy for the golf courses and the deployment of the Golf Concept application, Port Aventura management took the opportunity to implement some data gathering processes geared towards increasing customer data accuracy. At the resort level, golf customers had certain specific characteristics such as their golf handicap, their preferred tee time, etc. This information needed to be known by the rest of businesses as well as the golf customer contact points within Port Aventura so as to provide the desired integral service.

Fans

The people who were interested in staying informed about specific content and promotions according to their preferences could register on the Port Aventura website. When registering, fans had to introduce their name, surname, Spanish national identity card or passport number, email address, and physical address. Port Aven­tura verified these data and stored the information in the fan database.

Next steps

As Mercedes and Fernando left the restaurant, Fernando thought about the next steps. The request for more knowledge about the individual customers that Mercedes had just made and the Marketing department’s desire to implement one-to-one forms of communication required making changes to Port Aventura’s information manage­ment processes and systems. To support the one-to-one marketing approach, the company needed to set some priorities and answer several questions: which information management processes should they change? What changes should they introduce into the company’s working roles? Likewise, given the different degrees of completeness and accuracy of customer data, should the company target all customers at once or should it start working on specific segments? Furthermore, any changes to the information management processes would require adapting the infor­mation systems. However, should the company replace its existing information systems with a new, integrated one or should it opt for a data warehousing solution that would enable it to consolidate the data from the diverse systems? Fernando took his smart phone and sent an e-mail to Robert Magi: `Robert, let’s meet at 9.00 a.m., on Monday, May 25th. We have to define an implementation plan for the new one-to-one marketing strategy at Port Aventura.’

Assessment Verbs for Exams and Assignments

 

Term Meaning
KNOWLEDGE
Classify Arrange into groups/divide according to class/type
Define Explain precisely; state the meaning of; give details to show boundaries/distinguish it from others
Describe State a detailed account; information showing what/why/when/where/how/who something/ one is
Identify Name, specify, point out, pick out key facts, features, criteria, etc
List Catalogue; name  items in a sequence; mention briefly
Record Register data, make accurate note of facts, evidence
State Express main points carefully, completely, briefly and clearly; specify
Summarise Give an account/overview of the topic /main points of; make a short general statement about

 

COMPREHENSION
Calculate Work out/find out using your judgement; determine; weigh reasons carefully
Compare Examine two or more things / ideas in order to focus on their relationship/likeness/similarities & only mention/acknowledge differences
Discuss Consider from several points of view & explore implications; put the case for and against a proposition & end with some statement of your own position
Explain Make clear and understandable; give reasons for; interpret and account for
Express Clearly state, show an opinion/a fact/a feeling
Indicate Show; point out; draw attention to; give evidence of; make clear;
Prepare Get ready, set up, practise and/or make something, e.g. a presentation
Present To introduce & deliver/depict/portray/display/demonstrate/show, put forward arguments for

and expound a case, to being to notice

Quantify Express/measure the amount  or quantity of
Recognise Identify, recall, recollect, acknowledge, spot, notice, endorse, accept as valid, appreciate, pick out
Relate Show/establish how things are linked to & impact upon each other, and to what extent they are alike
Report Give an account of, inform, recount, relate, record
Review Make a survey of, examining the subject critically; consider and judge carefully
Translate Interpret, convert, decode and explain

 

APPLICATION
Apply Explain something, e.g.  theory, with links, evidence and examples, e.g. from the real business world so shows something is understood
Demonstrate Show clearly by giving evidence/proof/examples. Develop the idea by reasoning and example
Derive Obtain results/draw from/ develop
Find Discover something, e.g. information, reveal meaning, locate, obtain
Forecast Predict, estimate or calculate possible results linked to criteria, complete or incomplete facts  or reasoning
Highlight Emphasise, stress, underline, show up, focus, attention on, give prominence to
Illustrate Make clear by using examples; use figures or diagrams to explain; show the meaning of something by giving related examples
Implement Put into practice or action a plan, apply, employ, instigate
Plan Arrange something or event;  with aims, times, stages, sequence, outcomes
Produce Make, create, construct something or make clear case for
Reconcile Bring together, settle/resolve issues,  e.g. levels of acceptance of a statement/proposition
Schedule Plan and identify the order of actions or events within a set timescale, agenda, calendar, rota, list
Solve Unravel the issues, work out the answer, decipher and explain
Tabulate Put things in a table or chart to show clear results/information
Use Employ, apply something, apply and draw on experience, knowledge
Validate Confirm, authenticate, certify, endorse, support with evidence
Verify Make sure that something is accurate/true; check; prove that with evidence…

 

ANALYSIS
Analyse ‘Take apart’ an idea or statement; ‘unpack’; deconstruct; examine in depth & consider how the parts interrelate, give reasons & answers to questions (e.g. Who? What? Where? When? Which? ow? Why? How?)
Argue Make a case based on appropriate evidence to support a point of view
Compare & contrast Compare two or more objects/things/people to focus on their similarities and their differences
Debate Question/dispute/deliberate/argue a view or case
Differentiate Explain/show how something is different from something else
Distinguish Identify the differences between/separate/discriminate
Examine Consider; look closely at a question to find out
Interpret Give an account of the meaning; use your judgement indicating relationships to others or way of looking at
Propose To offer or put forward for consideration or acceptance, something to be undertaken
Question Query subject matter; make enquiries to identify and address issues/problems, to consider and doubt facts and possibilities, complete and incomplete knowledge/understanding
Test Question and check out material/views; investigate and experiment to assess evidence, try to prove

 

SYNTHESIS
Create Generate/construct/design/invent some original thought/idea/thing/product
Design Devise/plan/invent/draw up plans/propose/formulate
Determine Find out something exactly; establish/decide
Explore Discover more about; look carefully for; investigate; seek for/after; attain by search
Formulate Express/compose/devise  something by means of a formula or model or specific words/definitions
Integrate Incorporate, put together things; combining  ideas, theories and /or practices
Justify Argue/defend/support an issue or case; provide explanations and reasons/facts/information/

strong evidence and examples

Organise  Put in some order, sort out people, plans, facts, issues; arrange/systemise
Structure Organise and arrange ideas/things in a clearly formulated way; construct obvious shape, by a plan with organisation/ composition
Synthesise Consider different materials/views to bring common points together

 

 

EVALUATION
Advise Give suggestions based on your  judgement/views about future actions, with explanations /evidence/ reasons
Appraise/
Assess
Judge the importance/value/ quality/worth of something and give reasons
Conclude Give an answer/ summary, a final account, reach a decision about something showing the key steps/points/ reasons/judgements that assisted you in reaching your view/answer
Critically…/

Critique

Comment on the merit of data/theories/opinions/relevance; judge evidence;  weigh up strengths / benefits and faults/weaknesses
Estimate Predict; form an opinion as to the degree/nature/ value/size/amount of
Evaluate Make an appraisal as to the worth of; judge effectiveness/value/quality/nature/use of/amount of
Judge State opinion/view based on evidence/examples; ascertain to what distance/amount;  to what extent; to what degree
Recommend Suggest possible actions/routes/outcomes; linked to and based on previously shown knowledge and understanding, may include your views and advise
Reflect Consider and assess strengths & weaknesses/usefulness/quality/ performance and draw conclusions

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