Strategic supply chain management and global supply chains.

Assignment Information

This assignment is designed to assess learning outcomes 1, 2, 4 and 5 and accounts for 50% of the overall module mark. It is divided into two

parts: Part A consists of a reflective account of your experience of the guest lecture series of the module and is worth 10%, and Part B is a

critical analysis of a chosen topic based on one of three themes, and accounts for 40% of the coursework and module mark.

Part A requires you to write a reflective essay of 1000 words, while Part B requires you to write a 2000 word original essay.

Module learning outcomes being assessed
LO1. Critically assess the strategic impact of Supply Chain Management, and organization competitiveness in different industrial contexts.
LO2. Apply knowledge and critical evaluation of organizational strategic direction to the development of Supply Chain and operations resources

and capabilities.
LO4. Diagnose the implications of relevant Supply Chain ethical issues and recommend guidelines for their management.
LO5. Contrast and critically discuss different ways of assessing organizational and Supply Chain performance.


A number of challenges are faced by companies managing global supply chains, such as the selection of overseas based suppliers and the handling

of such relationships. Companies must therefore be able to think globally and consider supply chain issues from a variety of perspectives. The

frequency with which new technologies are developed, the changing social and environmental landscape around which businesses operate, and the

inherent volatility and vulnerability surrounding certain markets, present additional challenges. These all influence decisions made regarding

the strategic and operational management of supply chain resources, processes and capabilities.

During the course of this Module you have been exposed to a number of these issues as part of regular lectures and seminars, as well as during a

number of scheduled guest lecture sessions designed to facilitate interaction with industry experts and to give you an appreciation of the

international environment in which companies operate.

The purpose of this assignment is two-fold:

1) To allow for you to engage more comprehensively with a selected topic area of the module around a chosen theme of importance.
2) To give you an opportunity to reconcile theory and academic content with real world application, and to gain an appreciation of the

international environment in which companies operate.

Instructions to students

PART A (10%)

During the course of the Module you will have attended at least 3 guest lectures as part of a guest lecture series allowing you to engage with

industry experts from around the world on a range of supply chain topics in an international context. Write a short individual reflective report

(1000 words) on your experience and what you’ve learnt from the guest lecture series considering:

a) The impact on your knowledge in one area of the module e.g. supplier relationships. Does the theory agree with the real world

b) Practices, principles or challenges arising due to international and/or cross-cultural issues related to your chosen area. Use the

example of a company from any of the guest lectures and consider the impact this has had on the supply chain of that business.
c) Your experience of the lectures and your awareness of international issues of relevance to global supply chains.
PART B (40%)

1. Choose a topic area covered on the 364SAM Module, for example, strategic partnerships, global and local sourcing, sourcing strategies,

supply chain configuration, performance measurement, agile supply chains, etc.

2. Provide a critical analysis of the selected topic in relation to one of the following themes:

a) Corporate social responsibility – health & safety, humanitarian, triple bottom line, social/ethical responsibility, climate change, etc.

b) Technology & innovation – e-business, e-procurement, mobile applications, new products and/ or services, robotics, information

management, etc.

c) Risk & vulnerability – risk management and assessment, supply chain mapping, responding to failure or disruption of operations or supply

chain processes, etc.

Consequently, you are required to draw insights from around 6 – 10 published journal articles and/or more general sources such as textbooks for

more fundamental operations management, strategic planning and (strategic) supply chain management principles.

Read and use relevant academic sources correctly referenced. If you wish to use another author’s exact words in a short quotation this must be

clearly marked up in inverted commas with the exact source given, including page number, so that the reader can clearly see which words have

been copied and are not your own. Just quoting references used at the end is not sufficient. Please use a word guide of 2000 words (with a

standard 10% tolerance either way in line with University standards), in an essay format, using the Coventry University Harvard style of


Criteria for Assessment

The reflective essay will be assessed based on the following weighting criteria:

Criteria Proportion of overall module
Reflection and analysis of impact on your own knowledge and learning 50%
Evidence of international and/or cross-cultural issues related to chosen topic 40%
Presentation, grammar, spelling and accurate referencing 10%
Total 100% (x 10% for Part B coursework mark)
This table details the weightings of the five criteria by which your work will be assessed.

Criteria Proportion of overall module
1. Introduction
• Is there a concise introduction that sets the scene?
• How well does it motivate the topic and work presented?
• Are the main concepts clearly defined and introduced? 10%
2. Review of select literature
• Have the most relevant theories and ideas been discussed
• What insights have been drawn from the literature
• Is there a clear and logical flow to the arguments presented? 35%
3. Critical Analysis
This is mainly concerned with linking of the chosen topic area to the chosen theme.
• Has the student made a clear connection between the chosen theme and the concepts and ideas of the chosen topic area?
• Is the discussion clear and coherent?
• Are theoretical and practical aspects linked? 35%
4. Quality of sources, accuracy of citations and referencing 10%
5. Presentation, grammar and spelling 10%
Total 100% (x 40% for Part B coursework mark)

Please refer to the Marking Scheme below for information on how work is assessed and graded.

How to submit your assessment

Both essays must be submitted via Turnitin by 23.55 on 18th March 2016. No paper copies are required. You can access the Turnitin link through

the module web.

• Your coursework will be given a zero mark if you do not submit a copy through Turnitin. Should you submit work on time but fail the

assignment, you will be offered a resit opportunity but the resit mark will be capped at 40%.
• All work submitted after the submission deadline without a valid and approved reason (see below) will be given a mark of zero. Please

note that a non-submission is not the same as a failed submission; a failed submission counts as an attempt whereas an absent mark does not

necessarily allow you to resit the coursework.
• Short deferrals (extensions) of up to three calendar weeks can only be given for genuine “force majeure” and medical reasons, not for

bad planning of your time. Please note that theft, loss, or failure to keep a back-up file, are not valid reasons. The short deferral must be

applied for on or before the submission date. You can apply for a short deferral by submitting an Examination/ Coursework Deferral Application

Form. Application Forms along with the supporting evidence should go to the relevant Student Support Office (WMG03). For a longer delay in

submission a student may apply for a long deferral.
• Students MUST keep a copy and/or an electronic file of their assignment.
• Checks will be made on your work using anti-plagiarism software and approved plagiarism checking websites.


Word Count Limit

Your word count includes in text citations but not the final references or appendices. If you are more than 10% over or under the word count

limit you may lose marks as a 10% penalty applies.

The contents of your References and Appendices are not normally given a specific mark (though they may contribute to your overall mark, as

detailed in the assessment criteria). We therefore recommend that you only use Appendices for supporting material and not for the substantive

part of your work.

As part of your study you will be involved in carrying out research and using this when writing up your coursework. It is important that you

correctly acknowledge someone else’s writing or thoughts and that you do not attempt to pass this off as your own work. Doing so is known as

plagiarism. It is not acceptable to copy from another source without acknowledging that it is someone else’s writing or thinking. This includes

using paraphrasing as well as direct quotations. You are expected to correctly cite and reference the works of others. The Centre for Academic

Writing provides documents to help you get this right. If you are unsure, please visit

Turnitin includes a plagiarism detection system and assessors are experienced enough to recognise plagiarism when it occurs. Copying another

student’s work, using previous work of your own or copying large sections from a book or the internet are examples of plagiarism and carry

serious consequences. Please familiarise yourself with the CU Harvard Reference Style (on Moodle) and use it correctly to avoid a case of

plagiarism or cheating being brought. Again, if you are unsure, please contact the Centre for Academic Writing or a member of the course team.
Return of Marked Work

You can expect to have marked work returned to you 2 weeks after the submission date. Marks and feedback will be provided online. As always,

marks will have been internally moderated only, and will therefore be provisional; your mark will be formally agreed later in the year once the

external examiner has completed his / her review.
Marking and Assessment Scheme

Mark range

70 – 100%

In order to secure a mark in this range, a candidate must submit an outstanding answer that could hardly be bettered. In addition to the

criteria identified below for a mark between 70-85%, an answer scoring a mark of 85-100% would show an excellent level of understanding and

critical/analytic skills and originality. For example, such an answer would include new insights into Supply Chain Management Strategy which are

not drawn from the literature but from the student’s own critical thinking, and which add something to the existing literature.

An essay in this range will demonstrate a strong understanding of theories, concepts and issues relating to Supply Chain Management Strategy.

There will be evidence of wide-ranging reading from a variety of valid sources (as described and presented in the marking criteria for 60-69%).

The assignment must be written in a clear, well-structured way with a coherent and seamless flow and show evidence of independent, critical

thought. It must show extensive relevant reading on the subject and intelligent use of the material to present a well-balanced and well-argued

assignment. For example, the student will have considered a range of relevant issues and be able to assess the strength and weaknesses of

various approaches/arguments and put forward a confident and articulate view of their own.

60 – 69%
An essay in this mark range will demonstrate a good understanding of the requirements of the assignment and of theories, concepts and issues

relating to Supply Chain Management Strategy. An assignment in this percentage range will include a balanced discussion of issues central to the

question, how these are addressed by different authors or sources and some critical thinking into their relative merits or shortcomings.

The answer will be contain few errors and little, if any, irrelevant material. It will show evidence of reading from a variety of sources (i.e.

more than 3 or 4) but not so many sources that the discussion loses focus and becomes unclear or irrelevant. All sources should be of some

academic merit (e.g. books, journals, reports, media publications). Unreferenced material from non-credible internet sources MUST be avoided.

All sources must be included and properly referenced in the references. The assignment will be well-organized and clearly written/presented


50 – 59%
The answer will demonstrate some reasonable understanding of relevant theories, concepts and issues relating to Supply Chain Management Strategy

but also some minor errors of fact or understanding.

The assignment will not be based on an extensive range of sources (for example few references are included), or much evidence that they have

been read closely or well-understood. For example, the assignment will retell sources rather than analyse them.

The assignment may be quite general in part. Some errors may be present and some irrelevant material may be included.

The essay may not be particularly well-structured, and/or clearly presented and contain some spelling mistakes and grammatical errors. A few

sentences may be unclear.

40 – 49%

A mark within this percentage range will be given to an essay which:
– shows some limited basic understanding of the subject but is incomplete. For example, if it answers one part of a question but not the

– makes only very general statements
– includes some factual errors or misunderstandings e.g. confusion between different companies or misuse of certain key terms.
– shows limited use of material with limited reading/research on the topic and includes only a very small number of references, not all of

which are included in the references
– includes spelling mistakes, is poorly structured with no clear argument and grammar mistakes making it difficult to understand.
– includes some irrelevant material.

35 – 39%
A mark within this percentage range will be given to an assignment which:
– includes only a limited amount of relevant material.
– shows little evidence of reading/research on the topic. For example, the essay includes only very few references, and relies only on

material or case studies used during the course.
– shows only a very basic understanding of the subject.
– is poorly presented with bad grammar, some spelling mistakes and an incomplete reference list.
– has a poor structure and does not flow e.g. if there is no conclusion or new facts are introduced in the conclusion rather than

introduction or main discussion.
– contains some fundamental errors.

20 – 34%

0 – 19%
A poor fail on this assignment means the assignment submitted:
– is poor and suggests that the student has spent very little time on it e.g. if the answer is considerably under the word requirement

and/or presented in note form rather than as a fully written up essay.
– bears little relation to the assignment topic.
– shows a poor understanding of theories, concepts and issues relating to Supply Chain Management Strategy, and to the learning outcomes

detailed in this document.
– contains some or many fundamental errors and misunderstandings of the academic or other material used. For example many of the facts

cited are incorrect.
– uses literature or other material which is largely irrelevant or has no academic value
– is poorly structured and poorly presented. For example, sentences may be hard to understand and contain many spelling or grammatical

– contains no references.
Work within this mark range shows a complete failure to meet the requirements of the assignment. A mark in this range will be given for an essay

– is below 500 words in length.
– bears no link to the question chosen and shows very little or no knowledge or understanding of any of the theories, concepts and issues

relating to Supply Chain Management Strategy. The answer may be fundamentally wrong or trivial.
– contains no references and/or evidence of relevant reading.
– shows little understanding of the requirements of the assignment and only a vague knowledge of the subject area.
– includes numerous fundamental errors in the understanding or presentation of the material discussed. There is a general lack of

facts/evidence and what is provided is mostly incorrect and/or irrelevant.
– is poorly structured and poorly presented. Spelling and grammar are poor. Many sentences are incomprehensible.
– the examiners do not feel could be described as a serious attempt by any reasonable standards.

  • Enter the code: AE30