Monday, March 23, 2020

Best College Acceptance Calculator Learn Your Admission Chances

Best College Acceptance Calculator Learn Your Admission Chances SAT / ACT Prep Online Guides and Tips Anyone who’s applied to college remembers the fear of getting that dreaded rejection letter. (For the record, I got two- and they both stung. A lot.) But what if you could calculate your chances of college acceptance before you applied? The good news is that you can! Ourcollege acceptance calculator uses your GPA and SAT/ACT score to estimate your likelihood of getting accepted to a particular school.But aside from GPA and test scores, what other critical factors affect your chance of admission?Read on to learn what schools look for during the admission process as well as how you can raise your chance of acceptance by submitting a strong application. What Factors Affect Your Chance of Acceptance? College applications have several components, with each part playing a crucial role in determining whether or not you'll be admitted. But just how important a role one part plays ultimately depends on where you're applying. Below, we go over the major factors that can influence your chance of admission to college, starting with the most important ones. #1: GPA and Rigor of Coursework Many experts agree that your GPA and the rigor of your course load are the most important factors in the college admission process. According to theNational Association for College Admission Counseling's (NACAC)2017 State of College Admission report, 77% of the schools surveyed rated grades in college prep courses, as well as grades in all courses, considerably important, and52%said the same for the overall strength of a student's high school curriculum.As these statistics indicate, most colleges consider grades and rigor of coursework extremely significant factors in admission. Good grades are so important because they emphasize your overall diligence as a student. But it'snot always just about getting straight As; rather, schools want to see that you're consistently challenging yourself to learn complex concepts. Your ability toperform well in upper-level classes indicates your preparedness for college-level coursework. So for some colleges, a B in an AP class might be viewed just as highly as, if not higher than, an A in a regular class. #2: SAT/ACT Test Scores Another critical factor for admission- ranked considerably important by 54% of schools in the NACAC survey- is SAT/ACT test scores. Generally speaking, admission test scores are just as, or nearly as, important as grades and rigor of coursework. But according to a US News interview with college-admission experts, the overall significance of SAT/ACT scores varies depending on the school. Some schools, particularly highly selective ones, largely emphasize test scores during the admission process. As a result, being able to hityour goal score on the SAT/ACT is often necessary for admission to these schools. Nevertheless, not all schools believe SAT/ACT scores are that important. In fact, many liberal arts colleges and national universities (even some highly ranked ones!) are test optional, meaning you are not required tosubmit test scores. #3: Personal Statement/Essay Next up is the admission essay, or personal statement.This essay is a critical component of your application, as it offers a personal glimpse into who you are as a person- something your transcripts and test scores can’t do alone. By allowing you to address and explain specific challenges you’ve overcome and accomplishments you've made, either in your personal life or academic career, the personal statement gives you the opportunity todistinguish yourself from your peers. This is especially helpful as many applicants often look alike on paper, with similar grades and test scores. In the NACAC survey, 55% of schools rated the personal statement either moderately or considerably important for admission. Clearly, you'll need to write a great essay if you hope to raise your chances of admission! Extracurriculars? Well, for one, I was the slowest runner on my cross-country team. #4: Extracurricular Activities/Resume Most schools will require you to submit a resume or evidence of any extracurricular activities (e.g., sports, clubs, etc.), volunteer work, and/or part-time work you’ve completed outside of school. What this resume does is introduce to schoolsyour general interests and non-academic accomplishments. As you create your resume, remember the key motto: depth over breadth.Basically, you’re far more likely to stand out as an applicant if you're deeply focused on honing a certain skill or contributing to a certain cause than if you're simply jumping from one activity to another. More than anything, schools want a resume that highlights your ongoingpassion and commitment. According to NACAC, nearly half of the schools surveyed considered extracurricular activities moderately or considerably important.So hopefully you've got a couple of interesting hobbies or experiences you can add to your resume! #5: Letters of Recommendation Letters of recommendation are often a vital component of college applications. If required, you'll usually need to submit two letters.However, many large state schools, such as the University of Washington and the University of Texas, do not require letters of recommendation, so make sure to check your schools' application requirements to see whether you'll need to submit any. Your letters should come from teachers whose classes you've taken (core classes, such as math and English, are preferable) and/or your school counselor. Althoughyou won't be able to read what your teachers have written about you, a good letter will positively address key aspects of your personality and work ethic in a detailed and thoughtful manner. You should always choose letter writerswho know you well enough to comment on specific accomplishments you've made.Teachers who don’t know you that well are more likely to write lukewarm letters that don’t say anything unique about you and don't mention anything that isn’t already explicit on your transcripts and resume. Letters of recommendation can play an important role in the admission processbut are generally secondary to transcripts, test scores, and resumes. According to the NACAC survey, alittle more than 40% of schools considered both teacher recommendations and counselor recommendations moderately important, while less than 20% considered them considerably important. #6: Additional Test Scores (AP, IB, SAT Subject Test) Subject-specific tests, such as AP tests, IB tests, andSAT Subject Tests, differ from the SAT/ACT in that they showcase your mastery of particular skills and subject areas. The NACAC survey reports that 61% of schools said AP and IB tests were oflimited ormoderate importance. So whileAP and IB test scores aren’t usually requirements for admission, scoring highly on them could give a small boost to your application. Fewer students take SAT Subject Tests, however, which are only required by certain (selective) schools for admission. NACAC states that 70% of schools rated SAT Subject Test scores as having no importance at all, indicating that most schools do not ask for these scores. But for the schools that do require (or strongly recommend) SAT Subject Test scores, you should aim to get high scores on them, particularly if you’re taking any Subject Tests in the field in which you’re planning to major. Our guide offers a complete list of schools that require or recommend SAT Subject Test scores. I wasn't ranked No. 1 at school, but I'm always No. 1 in Mario Kart. #7: Class Rank Class rank is an admission factor that’s actually decreased in importance over time, as fewer high schools are beginning to calculate it. In 2006, 23% of schools surveyed by NACAC regarded class rank as considerably important, but by 2016 this number had dropped to just 9%. Despite this, if your school doescalculate class rank, your rank will likely be fairly important to your colleges. Even with its drop in importance over the past decade,33% of schools still consider class rank moderately or considerably important. #8: Other Factors Several additional factors can influence your chance of getting accepted to college. These factors vary with different schools, but here are some of the most common ones: Supplemental essays:Some schools might ask you to supply a supplemental essay detailing why you want to attend this particular school(we call this a â€Å"Why This College† essay). Portfolio: A portfolio is generally only required if you’re applying to an art-oriented program or school. For example, Champlain College in Vermont requires portfolios for undergraduate applicants in certain BS and BFA programs. Interview: Not many schools require interviews, but those that do want to see that you’re enthusiastic about the school and are as strong a candidate in person as you are on paper. Most Ivy League schools require evaluative interviews, while other selective schools might require or strongly recommend them. Legacy: Many schools, such as Harvard and Brown, will take into consideration whether you are a legacy student. (In most cases, "legacy" means that one or both of your parents attended the school for undergrad.) Legacy can be a tipping factor for schools trying to decide between two equally qualified candidates. Ethnic background: Many schools practice affirmative action and will therefore take into account your racial and/or ethnic status with the intention of increasing student diversity. Geographic location: Schools might also take into account where you come from so as to create a diverse class of students from a variety of states and countries. Athletic skills: Yourathletic skillsmight play a role in admission at certain schools. Some schools even recruit highly successful student-athletes based on their high school athletic careers. First-generation college student:Being afirst-generation college student means that your parents did not attend or complete college (regardless of whether your siblings did). Much like legacy, this can be a tipping factor in your favor during the admissions process. Want to build the best possible college application? We can help. PrepScholar Admissions is the world's best admissions consulting service. We combine world-class admissions counselors with our data-driven, proprietary admissions strategies. We've overseen thousands of students get into their top choice schools, from state colleges to the Ivy League. We know what kinds of students colleges want to admit. We want to get you admitted to your dream schools. Learn more about PrepScholar Admissions to maximize your chance of getting in. Feeling lucky? College Acceptance Calculator: What Are Your Chances? While you can’t know for sure whether you’ll get into a school or not, you can use our college acceptance calculator tool, along with what we know about admission factors, to roughly calculate your college acceptance chances. First, go to Google and search for â€Å"[School Name] PrepScholar† or â€Å"[School Name] PrepScholar admission requirements.† You’ll want to find your school’s admission requirements page in our PrepScholar database. For example, here’s what came up when I searched for â€Å"pomona prepscholar†: Once you've clicked the link to your school’s admission requirements page, scroll down to the section titled â€Å"Admissions Calculator.†You can also use ctrl + F to search for â€Å"calculator† to jump to the section more quickly. On Pomona's admission requirements page, here's what the admissions calculator section looks like: As you can see in this screenshot, our calculator takes your SAT/ACT score and (weighted or unweighted) GPA to give you a percentage estimating your chance of acceptance. Note that this percentage, though helpful, is based only on your GPA and test scores anddoesn't take into account other critical admission factors, so itcan't be considered 100% accurate. The default SAT score and GPA on the calculator will be whatever the averages are for your particular school. (The default SAT score uses the old 2400 SAT scale, but you can change this to the current 1600 SAT scale by clicking "New SAT.") In my example above, the average (old) SAT score for students admitted to Pomona is 2160, and the average GPA of admitted students is 4.05. To calculate your chances of college acceptance, choose your test (old SAT, new SAT, or ACT) and then toggle the calculator so that it shows your test score.You can also type your score directly in the box to the right. Next, repeat these steps for your GPA. Note that the GPA scale here goes up to 5.0 to account for weighted GPAs. Input your GPA exactly as it is, regardless of whether your school uses a weighted or unweighted scale. So if your school uses unweighted GPAs (i.e., out of 4.0) and you have a 3.5, input 3.5 on the calculator. If, on the other hand, your school uses weighted GPAs and you have a 4.2, then you'd input 4.2. Let’s say I took the (current version of the) SAT and got a relatively high score of 1430. In addition, my (weighted) high schoolGPA is 4.5. According to our tool (and based purely on GPA and test scores), my chance of admission to Pomona would equal about 15%: As you can see, it'd be particularly tough for me to get into Pomona based on my current GPA and SAT test score alone. Even though my GPA and SAT score are quite high in this example, Pomona is an extremely selective school with only a 10% admittance rate. Therefore, in orderto increase my chances of admission,I'd need an extremely impressive SAT score and GPA (not to mention quality letters of recommendation, a strong personal statement, and a great resume!). Despite my low chance of admission, there's no guarantee that I couldn't get into Pomona with my current SAT score and GPA. What our college acceptance calculator shows is thatit's simply unlikelyfor me to get accepted with my current stats. As you use our college acceptance calculator, be aware thatyour test scores and GPA are not the only factors schools will consider during the admission process. Unfortunately, no college acceptance calculator can take into account the strength of non-quantifiable application components, such as your personal statement and resume. The best thing to do, then, is towork on ensuring that the rest of your application is equally strong, if not stronger, than your GPA and test scores. What's worse than a low chance of acceptance? A constant low battery. What If Your Chances of College Acceptance Are Low? What's considered a low chance of admission will vary depending on where you're applying. As we saw above, with highly selective schools- even if your SAT/ACT scores and GPA are quite high- your chance of admission could be low due to the low acceptance rate of the school. If you've used our college acceptance calculator but discovered your chances of admission aren't as high as you'd hoped they'd be,you’ll need to put extra effort into your application to increase your chances of getting accepted. Here are five ways you can improve your applicationand give yourself a better shot at admission: #1: Retake the SAT/ACT Though you can't change your GPA all that much, you can make big gains on your SAT/ACT test score with a little- OK, a lot- of elbow grease. Let's look back at myexample with Pomona. You can see that my initial chances of admission- with a 1430 SAT score- are about 15%.But let’s say I retake the SAT and score far higher the second time around. How much would my chances of admission increase as a result? The answer to this depends on how big of a point improvement I'm able to make. If I were to improve my SAT score by 100+ points and get a near-perfect score of 1580, my chance of admission, according to our calculator, would increase by a whopping 32%! Ultimately, what this means is that you might be able to dramatically increase your chances of admission by simply retaking the SAT/ACT and scoring higher on it. This is partly because SAT/ACT test scores are such an important part of college applications. (Remember, as the NACAC survey revealed, test scores are usually one of the most important factors, along with GPA and coursework difficulty.) But getting a higher SAT/ACT score isn’t always easy. To help you out, we offer completely customizable SAT and ACT prep programs. You can also read our guides on how to improve your SAT orACT score, and on how to get a perfect SATorACTscore. #2: Get Feedback on Your Essay Sometimes an excellent personal statement or â€Å"Why This College† essay can sway an admission committee’s decision in your favor, so it’s imperative you write acompelling and technically correct essay. Getting separate pairs of eyes to analyze your writing is key to ensuring your college essay is high quality. Ask yourteachers, parents, and/or counselor to look over your essay and offer detailed feedback on how you could improve it and what you could change to make it more impactful. Make sure you, too, meticulously check your essayfor any glaring errors in grammar, spelling, or punctuation before submitting it. For additional help,our guide offers 100+ samples of stellar personal statements. These essays will give you ideas as to what you should discuss in your essay and how you might want to organize your thoughts. #3: Get Letters of Recommendation From Teachers You’re Close With For your recommendations, askteachers who know you well and who are guaranteed to write passionately and enthusiastically about you in their letters. Ideally, you’ll have already pinpointed the teachers with whom you get along best and have forged a solid relationship. You should also have received consistently high marks in their classes. The best letters are those that can speak to positive qualities you possess and achievements you’ve made- in other words, elements about you that aren’t evident in your transcripts and test scores.You should aim to obtain letters from primarily (if not only) core-class teachers, including one whose field you're interested in studying in college. Remember, although letters of recommendation won't necessarily be the most important part of your application, they still play a valuable role in showcasing your accomplishments to colleges. In the end, a glowing letter can really boost your application and might even help get you into some of the toughest schools out there, such as Harvard. The teachers you're close with = those whom you can take cool, hipster, Inception-y photos with. #4: Get High Scores on AP, IB, and/or SAT Subject Tests If your SAT/ACT test scores aren’t as impressive as you would've liked, you can try to make up for them by submitting high AP, IB, and/or SAT Subject Test scores. Most schools do not require AP scores but will view them if submitted. You’ll usually self-report these on your application, whichallows you to select the specific AP scores you want (and don't want) to report to your school. For example, if you scored 5s on AP US History andAP English Literature and Composition but only a 2 on AP Bio, reporting only your highest scores- and omitting your AP Bio score- will let you present yourself in a more flattering light. On a related note, if you scored relatively high on an AP or IB test whose field is related to the major you want to do, definitely report this score on your application.This score will indicate to your school that you have the basic knowledge and skills necessary for success in your chosen field of study. As for SAT Subject Tests, only certain (selective) schools will require these scores. Schools that want SAT Subject Test scores usually require (or strongly recommend) you to take two or three tests. If you’re already taking AP courses, it might be easier to opt for Subject Tests in the same fields as your AP classes. Doing this should give you a higher chance of securing solid SAT Subject Test scores since you’ll already be studying the material full-time in school. #5: Ace Your Interview (If You Have One) As is the case with SAT Subject Tests, most schools do not require evaluative interviews. But if your school is one of the few thatrequires or strongly recommends an interview, doing well on it can strengthen your application and produce a clearer, more well-rounded picture of who you are and what you hope to accomplish in college. Treat the interview as an opportunity to showcase your demonstrated interest in the school. According to NACAC, half of respondents ranked â€Å"Student’s Demonstrated Interest† in a school as moderately or considerably important for admission. So as youanswer questions during the interview, be clear about how the school will help you attain your academic goals and why you’ve chosen this particular school. Most of all, be sincere. Recap: What Are Your Chances of Getting Accepted? There are many factors that affect your chances of getting accepted to college. Generally speaking, the most important factors are your GPA, the rigor of your coursework, and your SAT/ACT test score. Secondary factors include your personal statement, extracurricular activities, letters of recommendation, and class rank. To (roughly) calculate your college acceptance chances, look for your school’s â€Å"Admission Requirements† page in our PrepScholar database and use its â€Å"Admissions Calculator† to see what your chances of getting in are, based on your current GPA and SAT/ACT score. Note, though, that our college acceptance calculator can only give you a rough estimate of your chances of acceptance. Because there's no way to take into account non-quantifiable factors such as your personal statement and letters of recommendation, no college acceptance calculator can ever be100% accurate.That said, you can use our calculator to help determine whether you might need to work on strengthening other areas of your application. If your chances of admission are low, try to improve your application as best you can. Some options to consider are retaking the SAT/ACT and aiming for a higher score, obtaining strong letters of recommendation from teachers who know you well, and getting feedback on your essays. In the end, it's impossible to know for sure whether you’ll get accepted to a certain school or not.But by putting forth your best application possible, you can give yourself a far higher chance of acceptance- not to mention the satisfaction that you gave it your all! As Tim Allen once said, "Never give up, never surrender." What’s Next? Need help applying to college? Start by reading our extensive guide onhow to apply to college. After,get tips onhow to build a versatile college application so that you can apply to a broad range of colleges without getting overwhelmed. What's a good SAT score for college? A good ACT score?A good GPA?Our guides offer tons of information on how high you'll need to aim in order to get into the schools you wish to attend. Aiming for a super selective school?Get expert tips in our guide to getting into Harvard- written by an actual Harvard alum! Want to improve your SAT score by 160 points or your ACT score by 4 points?We've written a guide for each test about the top 5 strategies you must be using to have a shot at improving your score. Download it for free now:

Friday, March 6, 2020

Leaving Out That

Leaving Out That Leaving Out â€Å"That† Leaving Out â€Å"That† By Maeve Maddox Some members of my critique group often return my submissions having circled every that I’ve used to introduce a noun clause. NOTE: A noun clause is a subordinate clause that answers â€Å"what?† after a verb in another clause: â€Å"I feel that you are mistaken.† Main clause: â€Å"I feel.† Noun clause: â€Å"that you are mistaken.† Most of the time, I agree with their judgment and remove the offending that. Sometimes, however, I choose to leave it in, even if it’s not strictly necessary. The modern mantra of â€Å"leave out needless words† is one to observe in a general way, but it shouldn’t lead a writer to slash mindlessly at every word that can be left out just because it can be. Plenty of guidelines are given for the inclusion or omission of that when introducing a noun clause. The recommendations of the AP Style Guide are often quoted: Omit that after the verb to say–â€Å"usually.† Do not omit that when a time element intervenes between the the verb and the dependent clause. Include that after the verbs advocate, assert, contend, declare, estimate, make clear, point out, propose, and state–â€Å"usually.† Include that before clauses beginning with conjunctions such as after, although, etc. Recognizing the impossibility of laying down hard and fast rules for the use of that as a conjunction, the AP entry concludes with this sensible remark: When in doubt, include that. Omission can hurt. Inclusion never does. Fowler mentions some additional verbs that usually require a that: agree, assume, calculate, conceive, hold, learn, maintain, and suggest. Even if a verb appears on some guide’s â€Å"OK to omit† list, writers need to be alert to the possibility that omitting a that could force a reader to stumble, as in these examples: â€Å"The accountant has learned fractions must not appear in the totals.† â€Å"Do you know Mary Smith has left the firm?† â€Å"The doctor feels your leg will soon be better.† Here are some that and non-that examples from two popular and respected modern writers. Elizabeth George, In the Presence of the Enemy: within minutes it seemed that she hadn’t been able to hold up her head our esteemed MP from East Norfolk declared that his constituency is solidly behind him MP Larnsey’s wife swore yesterday she’d stick by her man, but I’ve a source who’s told me she’s moving out tonight. I’ve had a call from someone inside the association who says Larnsey’s going to be asked to stand down. Laurie King, Justice Hall: One might wish he’d stuck with badgers and squirrels At Marsh’s door she said politely that she’d see me at dinner You have to admit that his observations [] are quite perceptive I felt again that he’d have put it together as soon as he knew Iris better. The Darlings might hear that we had failed to board the trainThis means that most of the actual tailing exercise will fall to Russell and myself. both knew that if they were to dine with Mme Hughenfort, they could not be following her through the streets. Even when that is not needed for clarity, it may be the right stylistic choice for a writer’s intended tone. When it comes to using that as a conjunction, the best advice is to be aware of the â€Å"rules,† but don’t be afraid to deviate from them if the sentence doesn’t sound right to your writerly ear. Want to improve your English in five minutes a day? Get a subscription and start receiving our writing tips and exercises daily! Keep learning! Browse the Style category, check our popular posts, or choose a related post below:Masters Degree or Master's Degree?15 Great Word GamesThe 7 Types of Possessive Case

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Is a universal concept of Human Rights possible Essay - 1

Is a universal concept of Human Rights possible - Essay Example The Commission, under the chairmanship of Eleanor Roosevelt, drafted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which was officially adopted by the UN representatives from all over the world on 10 December, 1948. The Declaration emphasized that human rights are universal regardless of person’s nationality, religion, race, cultural, economic, and social background. However, since the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the world has significantly changed. The Cold War era, rise of Taliban, radical Islamism, Gaza conflict, the Middle-east War, North Korean dictatorship, recent Ukraine and Syria crisis, Charlie Hebdo attacks, constant tensions in African and south Asian regions, growing global poverty, homelessness, unemployment, violence, crimes, pollution, and the increasing North/South gap in the access to resources and wealth have regularly highlighted the failure of the UN Council and its Commissions in protecting human rights of common people around the world. The end of the Cold war led to the number of desperate attempts to establish â€Å"a new world orders.† But, such attempts have caused more social conflicts than solutions. The introduction of advanced technologies, fast transport means, and globalization began to bring people from various ethnic, social, cultural, and religious backgrounds together involunt arily and voluntarily. In the process of adjusting to pluralism, the tensions, conflicts, and confusion between people from different culture have significantly intensified. As Samuel Huntington have states, the clash of civilizations is the most visible and bitter truth of today’s world. The universality of human rights declaration has caused a stir in a political and social field since its proposal in 1947. The ideas of right and wrong, good and evil that exist in one society may not match with the

Monday, February 3, 2020

Curriculum in a Learning Institution Assignment Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 500 words

Curriculum in a Learning Institution - Assignment Example According to Freire (2014), most the curriculum fails due to lack of consideration of the learners in the process of designing curricula. This, in turn, serves to exclude some of the students from the positive learning process. The main need of education in providing knowledge to transform the society remains left out. For a curriculum to be inclusive, the students ought to have an opportunity of dialoguing with their teachers or mentors. Nevertheless, the act of dialogue must have love, bravery, and critical thinking. Designing curricula that allow students to have a dialogue with their teachers are fundament in transforming learning process. This kind of education from humanist educator allow for the transformation of both educator and students. Students need to be oppressed in to love what they are being taught. Learning is the fundamental right to any child and I had the privilege of attending a public school. In my personal learning experience, I knew early enough what I had to in school. Being in the old classrooms for hours did not bother that much. I had a passion for education with an aim of becoming a better citizen to build the nation. I spent hours perfecting my knowledge in various subjects except for mathematics that proved torturous to my brain. I tried to spend lesser time in trying to understand the formulas and concept. I had completely lost interest in the subject and perhaps it was due to my arrogant teacher. He had least humility to discuss any difficulty we experienced in his subject imposing fear among us. I developed the negative attitude towards the teacher and lost interest in the subject he taught. Assessing the effect of my mathematics teacher to my learning influence, it is clear to me that teachers and school leader have roles in the impact of students’ atti tude towards learning. If the teachers embrace, the dialogue in their teachings and enable interaction rather than imposing their knowledge on the students (Freire, 2014).  

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Divergence approach to IHRM

Divergence approach to IHRM Introduction Since the globalization emerged in the 1950s, it has exerted profound effects on the development of businesses around the world. The rapid growth of internationalization and the introduction of advanced technologies have facilitated the expansion of industrialized organizations, resulting in an increase in the number and significance of multinational companies (MNCs). Research on MNCs, especially on how they have managed their people in different countries to improve economic performance and the implications of this on managerial behaviour, as a consequence, have been of interest to many academics and practitioners. This has led to the emergence of international human resource management (IHRM) as a branch of management studies that investigates the design and effects of organisational human resource practices in cross-cultural context (Peltonen, 2006 cited in De Cieri et al., 2007, p. 283). Although the recognition of the importance of human resource management (HRM) to the success or failure in international business has been growing quickly overtime, there is still a lack of consensus about whether there is one best way to manage human resources in international context or not. Several researchers advocating convergence approach claimed that HRM would be converged and universalized under the impacts of environmental changes such as globalisation and technological improvement while others following the divergence approach stated that there were many variables acting as constraints on implementing best practice. This paper firstly will critically discuss these two perspectives. Then, it will analyse a case study of the transfer of HRM practices from a UK retail firm StoreCo to its Chinese subsidiaries to answer this question. Convergence approach to IHRM Convergence theory, so-called universalist paradigm (Girgin, 2005), has its roots in the standpoints of management practices in the middle of the twentieth century, and has gained widespread acceptance in the United States (US). One of the earliest contributions to the thesis of convergence was the theory of bureaucracy and rationalization of Max Weber. However, the convergence perspective was actually propagated until the book entitled Industrialism and the Industrial Men: The problems of labour and management in economic growth written by Kerr et al. was published. According to Kerr et al., the technological and economic forces, as a logic of industrialism, would result in greater similarities in structures and work organization, therefore, produce progressive convergence towards the most efficient pattern of management practice, namely the US model (Girgin, 2005; Gooderham et al., 2004). It was because the widespread adoption of advanced technologies into operations required firms to seek a more effective way of management and labour organization. Meanwhile, the US was the industrial and technological leader, currently being considered the best in management practices. Consequently, it could be inferred that other nations would attempt to imitate the US and thus patterns in other countries were viewed as derivative of, or derivations from the US model (Locke et al., 1995 cited in Gooderham et al., 2004, p.19). Since the convergence point of view was introduced, it has gained much support from both globalization and transaction economic theories. Based on convergence thesis, the proponents of the globalization perspective also claimed that under the forces of globalization, a borderless world was created, which in turn made international firms become transnationals and separated from their original nationalities (Girgin, 2005). When nationality elements are overshadowed, MNCs would then tend to apply a new best model and as stated even stronger by transaction economic theorists, there would be one best way to manage people at any period of time (Williamson, 1975, 1985 cited in Gooderham et al., 2004). Although convergence thesis appeared to be reasonable especially in the international economic integration process, the fact that it laid too much stress on the impact of technology and market, and only sought similarities in business in general and IHRM in particular made it strongly criticized. As Rowley and Benson (2000) asserted, such views were too simplistic to assume that all organizations can produce competitive advantage to compete with each other by operating in the same way. Furthermore, the fact that Japanese MNCs with different organisational structure and management method have operated successfully in the world market and challenged the industrial leader position of those in the US, have led to the development of another viewpoint divergence approach. Divergence approach to IHRM Contrary to convergence point of view which assumed that the differences of local practices in HRM were only the reflection of different stages of development and will be ultimately replaced by one best way, advocates of divergence outlook agreed that there were significant gaps in the context acting as constraints on convergence trend. They were mainly argued and examined by two strands of divergence approach culturalist and institutional perspectives. The culturalist perspective The culturalist approach is mostly based on Hofstedes concepts of national culture and its dimensions, and focuses on the influences of culture when explaining the distinction of MNCs managerial behaviors. In the book Cultures consequence: International differences in work-related values, Hofstede (1984, p.21) defined culture as the interactive aggregate of common characteristics that influence a human groups response to its environment. Therefore, in order to manage personnel effectively in international scale, MNCs must be aware of the effects of various cultural-based norms and social values, existing learning styles and response styles and attempt to adapt management practices from one culture to another (Ferris et al., 1999). This has been substantially supported by a variety of comparative studies conducted by several experts such as Tayeb (1994, 1998), Nam (1995), Gill and Wong (1998). For instance, in a case study research of Japanese multinational subsidiary in Britain, Taye b (1994) found that the differences in perception of leadership style of British and Japanese employees were consistent with their cultural backgrounds. Consequently, in order to successfully transfer Japanese practices in the United Kingdom (UK) subsidiaries, Japanese managers had to be very selective in the adoption of the original management systems and had to modify some of them to adapt to local conditions. As Kamoche (1996) insisted, it was the cultural differences between countries that produce a degree of differentiation in the management of human resources in international context. Although there is no doubt that the variations in national cultures are currently more or less influencing the variations in managerial behaviours, there are several convincing reasons why this theory needs to be assessed. Firstly, the literature of Hofstede, the cornerstone of the culturalist approach, was criticized to have methodological flaws and weak conceptualization of culture, which simply attributed national level actions/ institutions to national culture without any theoretical grounding (McSweeny, 2002). Secondly, this approach, because of concentrating too much on history and individual perceptions, merely viewed national values and norms as deep-seated factors and overlooked any changes in values that may arise over time (Girgin, 2005). Accordingly, it might be difficult to explain a trend towards individualism among younger generation in some Asian countries such as Japan and Korea, which usually emphasise on collectivism, and its effects on HRM of MNCs (Sano, 1998 cite d in Rowley and Benson, 2000). Last but not least, the theory of Hofstede was unable to provide complete explanation for the implications of its behavioural indices, including power distance index, masculinity and long-term orientation, for the change of work organisation and managerial behaviour in various countries (Girgin, 2005). The institutionalist perspective Compared to culturalist strand, the institutionalist point of view is considered to be a more comprehensive approach as it gives a clearer definition of social institutional environment and system as a basis to expound the organisational behaviour. The national (or regional) business system or social systems of production, called by Hollingsworth and Boyer, was defined as a set of interlocking structures and institutions that fundamentally shape the nature of markets, competition and business activity in general (Ferner, 2000). Besides that, this perspective also represents itself as the strongest challenge to convergence theory when it contended that personnel management systems were embedded in their own national institutional environments, including the state, regulatory structures, interest groups, public opinion and norms, rather than driven by the economic and technological forces (Gooderham, 2004). According to Ferner (2000), despite the fact that there has been an increasing trend in borrowing and disseminating practices in MNCs due to the intensified competition in the world market, it would not necessarily lead to convergence. It was because borrowings would be more or less modified to adapt to the existing complex national business systems (Ferner, 2000). Since there are different national development paths, there will be different forms of business organisation and HRM practices respectively. Some opponents might criticise that institutional approach focused too much on the socially constructed organisational forms while downplaying the significance of organisational agency, especially, in the early work ,merely considered institutional contexts as stable elements without taking into account institutional changes (Bjorkman, 2006; Edwards and Kuruvilla, 2005). Nonetheless, articles on this theory published in several famous journals recently have shown that academics and practitioners have begun to lay more stress on the processes of deinstitutionalisation as well as pay more attention to the influences of interest, agency, organisational phenomena, social fields, industries both at the national and international levels (Bjorkman, 2006). Moreover, institutional theorists also stated that they did not regard the evolution of national business system as the determinant of future organisational choices rigidly. Their principle objective, as stated by Ferner (2000), is to prov ide a conceptual framework to the comparative study of distinct social systems of production. Then, understanding of how the behaviours of MNCs in host countries are different from those in their countries of origin will be revealed and analysed. There is no one best way but Based on what stated above, it could be confirmed that there is no one best way in managing human resource in international context. Although no one could deny the increasing convergence trend among national economies because of the pressures of globalization and the widespread adoption of advanced technologies, national business system and culture remain highly significant factors which could greatly hinder the implementation of convergence. In order to clarify this issue, a case study of the transfer of HRM practices from a UK MNC named StoreCo to its subsidiary DecoStore in China will be carefully analysed. StoreCo was a British-owned retailer established in the late 1960s. In June 1999 it built the first purpose-built decorative materials warehouse store in Shanghai named DecoStore. Then, it expanded its operation by opening the second store also in Shanghai in May 2000 (Gamble, 2003). During the process of building up its subsidiaries in China, a basic approach this corporation used was imitating its UK practices in all aspects from supply chain management to marketing, store layout and HRM. The overall business strategy of DecoStore was decided by the parent company in the UK and expatriate managers were sent to DecoStore to facilitate the diffusion of standardized MNC practices. Expatriates were not only in charge of spreading out standard operating processes but also of initiating HR procedures such as selection, recruitment, training and promotion. Additionally, StoreCo organized training courses to improve and standardize training for both shopfloor and managerial staff of its su bsidiaries. Table 1 below starkly illustrates how HRM practices were transferred to DecoStore. Based on the above table, DecoStores HRM practices appeared to be rather similar to the model of its UK parent corporate. Namely, both of them had the same non-hierachy organisational structure and an in-house employee representative consultation system called Grass Roots. However, there remained some remarked differences between StoreCo and its subsidiaries. Firstly, in terms of communication with workforce, while StoreCo tended to be open about supplying employees with detailed information from corporate strategy to daily sales figures, DecoStore seemed to be less communicative to its staff which was fairly similar to Chinese state-owned enterprises. This, according to Gamble (2003), could be caused by the influence of host country nationals, especially DecoStore senior Chinese director who required keeping company secret for security in an intensely competitive marketplace. Secondly, in terms of work pattern, due to the impact of local business system, namely the low-cost labour m arket, DecoStore were able to employ all full-time employees and that were completely contrasted with its UK parent firm where a large proportion of labour force worked part-time. In addition, since there were no tradition of do it yourself (DIY) service in Shanghai and great concern of expartriate managers about poor working habits among older workers, DecoStore preferred to hire younger generation and provided more extensive and systematic training-courses than those of its UK parent-country enterprise. The impacts of national business system were also clearly reflected by the existence of trade union and reimbursement policy of medical care costs and meal subsidy in the reward system of Chinese subsidiary which were not offered in StoreCo payment levels. Consequently, it could be concluded that even though StoreCo tried to apply consistent people management methods it considered the best to its subsidiaries, there remained a divergence in HRM practices between StoreCo and DecoSto re due to the effects of host country nationals, national institutional contexts and cultural factors. This means that although national economies are indeed become increasingly converged under the implications of advanced technologies and globalisation, national differences continue to be major intervening and moderating elements affecting how organizations operate, and therefore, there would be no one best way in managing human resources in international context. Conclusion In conclusion, since IHRM was emerged, there has been a wide debate between convergence and divergence perspectives about whether there is one best way in managing people in international context. Convergence theorists believed that under the technological and economic forces, structures and work organization would become similar and converge towards the most efficient pattern of management practice, namely the US model. In contrast, divergence approach offered several empirical studies to prove that cultural or national institutional business system would act as constraints on the implementation of one best practice across various countries. It might be true that national economies are indeed becoming increasingly converged in the international economic integration process. Nonetheless, based on the analysed case study, this paper has suggested that even though MNCs will seek to apply a controlling method they considered the best to their subsidiaries in order to secure benefits fro m the consistency in human resource (HR) practices in individual MNCs across countries as well as contribute to the implementation of a global business strategy, there would be no one best way in personnel management. IHRM, instead, might be the combination of both model of parent company and particular features influenced by local institutional environment and cultural elements. References Bjorkman, I., International human resource management research and institutional theory. In: G. K. Stahl I. Bjorkman, ed. 2006. Handbook of Research in International Human Resource Management. Northampton: Edward Elgar, pp. 463-474. Edwards, T. Kuruvilla, S., 2005. International HRM: national business systems, organisational politics and the international division of labour in MNCs. International Journal of Human Resource Management. [Online]. 16 (1), pp. 1-21. Available at: http://org8220renner.alliant.wikispaces.net/file/view/Edwards.pdf [Accessed 14 February 2010]. Ferner, A., 2000. The embeddedness of US multinational companies in the US business system: implications for HR/IR. [Occasional Papers Series] November 2000., Leicester: De Montfort University. Gamble, J., 2003. Transferring human resource practices from the United Kingdom to China: the limits and potential for convergence. International Journal of Human Resource Management. [Online]. 14 (3), pp. 369-387. Available at: http://docserver.ingentaconnect.com/deliver/connect/routledg/09585192/v14n3/s2.pdf?expires=1266460744id=55082112titleid=457accname=University+of+East+Angliachecksum=08C5D8BC5D6EEE9F5CC78EFA6D35EF01 [Accessed 11 February 2010]. Gill, R. Wong, A., 1998. The Cross-Cultural Transfer of Management Practices: The Case of Japanese HRM Practices in Singapore. International Journal of Human Resource Management. [Online]. 9 (1), pp. 116-135. Available at: http://web.ebscohost.com/ehost/pdf?vid=2hid=13sid=e28e4034-2ff2-42c0-aba4-b93445c0ebda%40sessionmgr10 [Accessed 9 February 2010]. Girgin, Z., Human Resource Management in an International Context. In: M. Ozbilgin, ed. 2005. International Human Resource Management Theory and Practice. Hampshire: Palgrave MacMillan, pp. 46-62. Gooderham, P. Morley, M. Brewster, C. Mayrhofer, W., Human Resource Management: A Universal Concept. In: C. Brewster, W. Mayrhofer M. Morley, ed. 2004. Human Resource Management in Europe: Evidence of Convergence?. Oxford: Elsevier Butterworth-Heinemann, pp. 1-26. Hofstede, G., 1984. Cultures Consequences: International Differences in Work-Related Values. California: SAGE Punlications. Kamoche, K., 1996. The Integration Differentiation Puzzle: A Resource Capability Perspective in International Human Resource Management. International Journal of Human Resource Management. [Online]. 7 (1), pp. 230-244. Available at: http://www.informaworld.com/smpp/ftinterface~content=a739429533~fulltext=713240930 [Accessed 9 February 2010]. McSweeny, B., 2002. Hofstedes Model of National Cultural Differences and their Consequences: A Triumph of Faith a Failure of Analysis. Human Relations. [Online]. 55 (1), pp. 89-118. Available at: http://www.uk.sagepub.com/managingandorganizations/downloads/Online%20articles/ch05/4%20-%20McSweeney.pdf [Accessed 11 February 2010]. Nam, S., 1995. Culture, Control and Commitment in international joint ventures. International Journal of Human Resource Management. [Online]. 6 (3), pp. 553-567. Available at: http://web.ebscohost.com/ehost/pdf?vid=2hid=13sid=a66410a0-5d44-49ed-ac2b-31828678f4f7%40sessionmgr14 [Accessed 9 February 2010]. Rowley, C. Benson, J., 2000. Convergence and Divergence in Asian Human Resource Management. In: Association Francophone de Gestaion des Ressources Humaines. Paris, France, 16-17 November 2000. Tayeb, M., (1994). Japanese Managers and British Culture: A Comparative Case Study. International Journal of Human Resource Management. [Online]. 5 (1), pp. 145-166. Available at: http://web.ebscohost.com/ehost/pdf?vid=2hid=13sid=5e7d209f-ddc5-4e41-a95c-639152c3b146%40sessionmgr11 [Accessed 9 February 2010]. Tayeb, M., 1998. Transfer of HRM Practices across Cultures: An American Company in Scotland. International Journal of Human Resource Management. [Online]. 12 (4), pp. 332-358. Available at: http://docserver.ingentaconnect.com/deliver/connect/routledg/09585192/v9n2/s6.pdf?expires=1266464175id=55082703titleid=457accname=University+of+East+Angliachecksum=405B3A88F4DCC6A6A7A66B92155A506D [Accessed 8 February 2010].

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Weight Watchers Swot Analysis

Strengths * Brand Recognition * Patented Points Program * Science Based Approach/Clinically Proven Results * Multiple Support Options * History of successful Weight Loss * Multiple Payment Options * Flexible Meal Plans * Face to Face Support Groups * Located in 30 Countries and on the Web| Weaknesses * Slow Weight Loss * Costly over time * Successful weight loss is not typical| Opportunities * Science Driven approach can be a Medical Model * Affiliation with the Department of Education * Affiliations with Fitness Centers * Meeting the growing weight loss needs around the world| Threats * Strong Competition * Competitors new products and innovation * Surgical Procedures offering quick weight loss| Weight Watchers International is a Weight Loss Business that utilizes the philosophy of a Science-driven approach to help participants, also known as members, lose weight by forming helpful habits, eating smarter, getting more exercise and providing support.They target consumers who want to manage their weight through weight loss or weight maintenance. Their vision is to ensure Member satisfaction and retention by making Members feel cared for, well informed, part of the group and motivated to succeed. Weight Watchers has been around for 50 years and has developed their brand of providing weight loss services and products that make them a leading weight management service globally. The patented points program is based on a formula calculating the protein, carbohydrates, fat and dietary fiber content developed with consultation from a Scientific Advisory board. Each food is assigned a points value that reflects how the body breaks down food and converts it into energy.This Board is made up of world renowned medical experts to ensure that its weight loss plan is based on the most current scientific expertise. (Weight Watchers International) The Good Health Guidelines utilized by Weight Watchers are also recommended by the United States Department of Agriculture Center fo r Nutrition Policy and Promotion. (USDA) Weight Watchers offers a variety of support options to members who attend weekly meetings which are located in 30 countries around the world, weigh and go at store locations, attend meetings in their place of employment (At Work Meetings), or utilize the internet to participate in Weight Watcher’s services. Members are encouraged to share their struggles and successes.Struggles and successes are employed to motivate other members to achieve their weight loss goals by following the program and obtaining the proprietary tools offered for purchase. Members who reach their goal and maintain it for six weeks become Lifetime Members. Lifetime members maintain their membership by continuing to participate on a monthly basis. These members are free advertisements who attest to the success of the program. The meal plans are simple and the Points Plus system is very flexible. Each member receives a Daily Point Target (DPT) based on their height, weight, gender and age. The DPT represents the amount of food that each person should eat in a day.Foods that are low in fat and sugar tend to have lower point values and provide more volume to a meal or snack than less healthy options. Required foods are non-specific so the member is permitted to choose how they will consume required foods such as diary, healthy oil, and whole grains. All foods and drinks are permitted as long as the point value is calculated and accounted for when deducted from the DPT. Many members succeed in their weight loss efforts but not all members are successful. One of the biggest complaints of the program is that it offers slow weight loss. Our culture is one that appreciates immediate gratification. (The Associated Press, 2006) The competition offers much quicker weight loss methods.The success obtained by Lifetime members who worked for weeks, months and years to accomplish their goals is not nearly as appealing to the average consumer who is inundate d with quick fix fad diets. (Speri) Weight Watchers offers a lifestyle change that reduces food intake. It is not designed as a quick fix but instead is one that promotes healthy lifestyle changes that gradually accomplish weight loss. The consumer’s cost for Weight Watchers is very low compared to other weight loss programs or at least it appears so up front. (Sugar) There are no meals, shakes, supplements or bars that are required to be purchased in order to participate in the program. The food that you eat on plan is very much the same food that one could purchase in any grocery store or restaurant.There are multiple periods of free registration throughout each year and the weekly fee is nominal at approximately $13. 00 per week. The problem with this is that there are many hidden costs at Weight Watchers. The proprietary point system is unlike any other weight loss system. Successful members utilize food scales and measuring cups to weigh and measure their food, pedometer s and activity monitors to measure a person’s activity level, cookbooks, calculators and more. These products can all be purchased at lower prices from many convenience stores but they do not convert their information into point values the way that the Weight Watcher products do so many members purchase expensive Weight Watchers products to assist them with their weight loss journey.Additionally, the gradual weight loss concept requires members to attend for longer periods of time before they are able to reach a free Lifetime status. Lifetime members remain free if the member maintains their weight at no more than two pounds above their goal weight. Most people’s weight fluctuates regularly and fees are charged no matter what the reason for the weight gain. Weight Watchers has many opportunities to join with the medical profession to promote its science based plan. The Scientific Advisory Board that is hired to consult with Weight Watchers is made of Medical Profession als and the weight loss method is one that is promoted by most medical doctors even if they do not promote the Weight Watcher’s brand. USDA) The United States alone has determined that Obesity in America is common, serious and costly. (Fox News Latino) Weight Watchers has promoted a medical model for many years. An affiliation with the medical community would surely add value to the weight management scientifically based model that is currently promoted at Weight Watchers. The United States First Lady, Michelle Obama, has brought additional light to the obesity epidemic and the need for American’s to manage their diets. Her â€Å"Let’s Move† initiative has gained the attention of the entire country. Weight Watchers is a healthy living model that combines healthy foods with more activity.Teaming up with fitness centers, exercise centers and schools will accomplish more together than the weight loss community or the physical fitness community can do on its own. A true healthy lifestyle includes eating right and moving more. (Grain Foods Foundation) Our quick fix society is one that shows little patience for counting calories or points utilized by slower burning weight loss programs. The competition has now gone beyond that which offers diets where certain foods are limited or forbidden, and some are replacing them with pre-cooked meals that are very high in sodium. These programs, including NutriSystem, do not promote weight maintenance following the program but they do promote mindless weight loss.Those who follow this program do not need to think about what to eat or how to prepare it as all of the meals and shakes are prepared, frozen and shipped to the dieter’s home. (â€Å"NutriSystem: Lose weight with meals conveniently delivered to your home†) Many diet programs eliminate foods and replace them with supplements. The Atkins diet, for example, restricts the dieter’s ability to consume carbohydrates. This mean s that all sugars including fruits and vegetables are minimized or omitted from one’s diet. It is not in line with a medical model approach for healthy weight loss but it does promote quick weight loss. Unfortunately, this does pose a threat to Weight Watchers as the weight loss experience in such a plan does satisfy the quick fix needs of those who opt for these types of plans. Frazier) In an attempt to make weight loss quicker and easier, the medical profession has taken to providing surgical procedures that reduce the size of the stomach by removing part of the small intestine. This procedure is very risky to one’s health and has a tremendous amount of medical complications associated with it. It is however, one that does not require that a person who has had the surgery to persevere delayed gratification and behavioral changes that are required when one loses weight following a weight loss program such as Weight Watchers. (Staff) For many consumers, quick weight lo ss is far more appealing despite the potential negative consequences. References The Associated Press. (2006, May 28). Poll: Americans like instant gratification. USA Today. Fox News Latino. (2012, September 18).Obesity in America: Can it Get Much Wors? Yes, Advocacy Group Says. http: //latino. foxnews. com/latino/health Frazier, K. (2011, June 14). How much weight can I lose in a Month on Atkins? Retrieved from http://www. livestrong. com Grain Foods Foundation. (2012, May 15). The Key to a Healthy Body: Eating Right & Moving More. Retrieved from http://www. sixservings. org NutriSystem: Lose weight with meals conveniently delivered to your home. (n. d. ). Retrieved from http://www. dietsinreview. com/diets/Nutrisystem Speri, M. (n. d. ). Why Slow Weight Loss Wins. Retrieved from http://www. weightwatchers. com/util/art/index_art. aspx Staff, H. (2011, April 6).Weight Loss Surgery Health Center: Rux-En-Y Gastric Bypass. Retrieved from http://www. webmd. com/diet/weight-loss-surgery Sugar, J. (2011, August 29). How Much One Month of WEight Loss Costs. Retrieved from http://www. fitsugar. com/Weight-Loss-Program-Cost-Comparison USDA. (2013, March 7). Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Retrieved from http://www. cnpp. usda. gov/dietaryguidelines. htm USDA. (2013, March 7). Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Retrieved from http://www. cnpp. usda. gov/dietaryguidelines. htm Weight Watchers International. (n. d. ). History and Philosophy. Retrieved from http://www. weightwatfchers. com/about/his/board. aspx

Friday, January 10, 2020

Cloud Computing Technology Essay

INTRODUCTION Cloud computing is Internet (â€Å"cloud†) based on development and use of computer technology (â€Å"computing†).It is a style of computing in which dynamically scalable and often virtualised resources are provided as a service over the internet.Users need not have knowledge of, expertise in, or control over the technology infrastructure â€Å"in the cloud† that supports them. The concept incorporates infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS) and software as a service (SaaS) as well as Web 2.0 and other recent (ca. 2007-2009) technology trends which have the common theme of reliance on the Internet for satisfying the computing needs of the users. Examples of SaaS vendors include Salesforce.com and Google Apps which provide common business applications online that are accessed from a web browser, while the software and data are stored on the servers. A cloud is a pool of virtualized computer resources. A cloud can: 1.Host a variety of different workloads, including batch-style back-end jobs and interactive, user- facing applications. 2.Allow workloads to be deployed and scaled-out quickly through the rapid provisioning of virtual machines or physical machines. 3.Support redundant, self-recovering,highly scalable programming models that allow workloads to recover from many unavoidable hardware/software failures. 4.Monitor resource use in real time to enable rebalancing of allocations when needed. Fig 1.1: Overview of cloud computing HISTORY The underlying concept dates back to 1960 when John McCarthy opined that â€Å"computation may someday be organized as a public utility†; indeed it shares characteristics with service bureaus which date back to the 1960s.The term cloud had already come into commercial use in the early 1990s to refer to large ATM networks.By the turn of the 21st century,the term â€Å"cloud computing† had started to appear, although most of the focus at this time was on Software as a service (SaaS). In 1999, Salesforce.com was established by Marc Benioff, Parker Harris,and his fellows.They applied many technologies of consumer web sites like Google and Yahoo! to business applications. IBM extended these concepts in 2001,as detailed in the Autonomic Computing Manifesto-which described advanced automation techniques such as self-monitoring, self-healing, self-configuring, and self-optimizing in the management of complex IT systems with heterogeneous storage, servers, applications, networks, security mechanisms, and other system elements that can be virtualized across an enterprise. Amazon.com played a key role in the development of cloud computing by modernizing their data centres after the dot-com bubble and, having found that the new cloud architecture resulted in significant internal efficiency improvements,providing access to their systems by way of Amazon Web Services in 2002 on a utility computing basis. 2007 saw increased activity,with Google,IBM and a number of universities embarking on a large scale cloud computing research project, around the time the term started gaining popularity in the mainstream press. WORKING OF CLOUD COMPUTING Fig 1.2: Working of cloud computing In cloud computing you only need to load one application.This application would allow workers to log into a Web-based service which hosts all the programs the user would need for his or her job. Remote machines owned by another company would run everything from e-mail to word processing to complex data analysis programs.It’s called cloud computing, and it could change the entire computer industry. In a cloud computing system, there’s a significant workload shift.Local computers no longer have to do all the heavy lifting when it comes to running applications.The network of computers that make up the cloud handles them instead. Hardware and software demands on the user’s side decrease.The only thing the user’s computer needs to be able to run is the cloud computing system’s interface software, which can be as simple as a Web browser, and the cloud’s network takes care of the rest. CLOUD ARCHITECTURE Cloud architecture,the systems architecture of the software systems involved in the delivery of cloud computing, comprises hardware and software designed by a cloud architect who typically works for a cloud integrator. It typically involves multiple cloud components communicating with each other over application programming interfaces, usually web services. Cloud architecture extends to the client, where web browsers and/or software applications access cloud applications. Cloud storage architecture is loosely coupled, where metadata operations are centralized enabling the data nodes to scale into the hundreds, each independently delivering data to applications or users. Fig 1.3: Cloud architecture COMPONENTS 1. APPLICATION A cloud application leverages the Cloud in software architecture,often eliminating the need to install and run the application on the customer’s own computer,thus alleviating the burden of software maintenance, ongoing operation, and support. 2. CLOUD CLIENTS A cloud client consists of computer hardware and/or computer software which relies on the cloud for application delivery, or which is specifically designed for delivery of cloud services and which, in either case, is essentially useless without it. For example:Mobile ,Thin client ,Thick client / Web browser . 3. CLOUD INFRASTRUCTURE Cloud infrastructure,such as Infrastructure as a service,is the delivery of computer infrastructure, typically a platform virtualization environment,as a service.For example:grid computing ,Management , Compute ,Platform. 4. CLOUD PLATFORMS A cloud platform,such as Paas, the delivery of a computing platform,and/or solution saas,facilitates deployment of applications without the cost and complexity of buying and managing the underlying hardware and software layers. 5. CLOUD SERVICES A cloud service includes â€Å"products, services and solutions that are delivered and consumed in real-time over the Internet†.For example Web Services (â€Å"software system[s] designed to support interoperable machine-to-machine interaction over a network†) which may be accessed by other cloud computing components, software, e.g., Software plus services, or end users directly. 6. CLOUD STORAGE Cloud storage involves the delivery of data storage as a service, including database-like services, often billed on a utility computing basis, e.g., per gigabyte per month. For example Database ,Network attached storage ,Web service . TYPES OF CLOUDS 1. PUBLIC CLOUD Public cloud or external cloud describes cloud computing in the traditional mainstream sense, whereby resources are dynamically provisioned on a fine-grained, self-service basis over the Internet, via web applications/web services, from an off-site third-party provider who shares resources and bills on a fine-grained utility computing basis. 2. HYBRID CLOUD A hybrid cloud environment consisting of multiple internal and/or external providers â€Å"will be typical for most enterprises†. 3. PRIVATE CLOUD Private cloud and internal cloud are neologisms that some vendors have recently used to describe offerings that emulate cloud computing on private networks.These (typically virtualisation automation) products claim to â€Å"deliver some benefits of cloud computing without the pitfalls†, capitalising on data security, corporate governance, and reliability concerns. They have been criticised on the basis that users â€Å"still have to buy, build, and manage them† and as such do not benefit from lower up-front capital costs and less hands-on management ,essentially â€Å"[lacking] the economic model that makes cloud computing such an intriguing concept†.While an analyst predicted in 2008 that private cloud networks would be the future of corporate IT, there is some contention as to whether they are a reality even within the same firm. ROLES PLAYED IN CLOUD COMPUTING 1. CLOUD COMPUTING PROVIDERS A cloud computing provider or cloud computing service provider owns and operates live cloud computing systems to deliver service to third parties.Usually this requires significant resources and expertise in building and managing next-generation data centers.Some organisations realise a subset of the benefits of cloud computing by becoming â€Å"internal† cloud providers and servicing themselves, although they do not benefit from the same economies of scale and still have to engineer for peak loads. The barrier to entry is also significantly higher with capital expenditure required and billing and management creates some overhead.Nonetheless, significant operational efficiency and agility advantages can be realised, even by small organisations, and server consolidation and virtualization rollouts are already well underway.Amazon.com was the first such provider,modernising its data centers which,like most computer networks, were using as little as 10% of its capacity at any one time just to leave room for occasional spikes. This allowed small, fast-moving groups to add new features faster and easier, and they went on to open it up to outsiders as Amazon Web Services in 2002 on a utility computing basis. Players in the cloud computing service provision game include the likes of Amazon, Google, Hewlett Packard, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, Salesforce, SAP and Yahoo! 2. USER A user is a consumer of cloud computing.The privacy of users in cloud computing has become of increasing concern.The rights of users are also an issue, which is being addressed via a community effort to create a bill of rights. 3. VENDOR A vendor sells products and services that facilitate the delivery, adoption and use of cloud computing.For example:Computer hardware,Storage,infrastructure,Computer software,Operating systems ,Platform virtualization. APPLICATIONS OF CLOUD COMPUTING 1.EASY ACCESS TO DATA Clients would be able to access their applications and data from anywhere at any time.They could access the cloud computing system using any computer linked to the internet. 2. REDUCTION OF COSTS It could bring hardware costs down.Cloud computing systems would reduce the need for advanced hardware on the client side.You wouldn’t need to buy the fastest computer with the most memory, because the cloud system would take care of those needs for you. Instead, you could buy an inexpensive computer terminal, enough processing power to run the middleware necessary to connect to the cloud system. 3. CONVENIENCE Corporations that rely on computers have to make sure they have the right software in place to achieve goals. Cloud computing systems give these organizations company-wide access to computer applications.Instead, the company could pay a metered fee to a cloud computing company. 4. EASY STORAGE Servers and digital storage devices take up space. Some companies rent physical space to store servers and databases because they don’t have it available on site. Cloud computing gives these companies the option of storing data on someone else’s hardware, removing the need for physical space on the front end. 5. NO TECHNICAL SUPPORT RECQUIRED Corporations might save money on IT support. Streamlined hardware would, in theory, have fewer problems than a network of heterogeneous machines and operating systems. 6. SOLUTION TO COMPLEX PROBLEMS If the cloud computing system’s back end is a grid computing system, then the client could take advantage of the entire network’s processing power. CLOUD COMPUTING SERVICES 1. AMAZON WEB SERVICES The Amazon development model involves building Zen virtual machine images that are run in the cloud by EC2. That means you build your own Linux/Unix or Windows operating system image and upload it to be run in EC2. AWS has many pre-configured images that you can start with and customize to your needs. There are web service APIs (via WSDL) for the additional support services like S3, SimpleDB, and SQS. Because you are building self-contained OS images, you are responsible for your own development and deployment tools. AWS is the most mature of the CC options. Applications that require the processing of huge amounts of data can make effective you of the AWS on-demand EC2 instances which are managed by Hadoop. 2. GOOGLE AppEngine GAE allows you to run Python/Django web applications in the cloud.Google provides a set of development tools for this purpose. i.e. You can develop your application within the GAE run-time environment on our local system and deploy it after it’s been debugged and working the way you want it. Google provides entity-based SQL-like (GQL) back-end data storage on their scalable infrastructure (BigTable) that will support very large data sets. Integration with Google Accounts allows for simplified user authentication. 3. MICROSOFT WINDOWS AZURE Azure is essentially a Windows OS running in the cloud.You are effectively uploading and running your ASP.NET (IIS7) or .NET (3.5) application. Microsoft provides tight integration of Azure development directly into Visual Studio 2008. For enterprise Microsoft developers the .NET Services and SQL Data Services (SDS) will make Azure a very attractive option. The Live Framework provides a resource model that includes access to the Microsoft Live Mesh services. CHARACTERSTICS 1.COST Pricing is based on usage-based options and minimal or no IT skills are required for implementation. 2.DEVICE AND LOCATION INDEPENDENCE It enable users to access systems using a web browser regardless of their location or what device they are using, e.g. PC, mobile 3.MULTI-TENANCY This enables sharing of resources and costs among a large pool of users. 4.RELIABILITY This is suitable for business continuity and disaster recovery. 5.SCALABILITY Dynamic (â€Å"on-demand†) provisioning of resources without users having to engineer for peak loads 6.SECURITY It improves due to centralization of data,increased security-focused resources. 7.SUSTANIBILITY This comes through improved resource utilisation, more efficient systems. ADVANTAGES OF CLOUD COMPUTING 1. Ability to scale to meet changing user demands quickly 2. Pay by use. 3. Task oriented 4. Virtually no maintainence due to dynamic infrastructure software. 5. Application and operating system independent. 6. Easy to develop your own web-based applications that run in the cloud. 7. Location of infrastructure in areas with lower costs of real estate and electricity. 8. Sharing of peak-load capacity among a large pool of users ,improving overall utilization. 9. Separation of application code from physical resources. 10. Not having to purchase assets for one time or infrequent computing tasks. 11. Ability to use external assets to handle peak loads. DRAWBACKS OF CLOUD COMPUTING 1. Often limited or no technical support available. 2. Canned solutions such may not be full-featured or too task oriented. 3. When there are technical issues,you may lose access to your data or application. 4. No control. 5. You must have an internet connection. 6. If the company hosting the application goes out of business,you may lose access to your data or application permanently. REFERENCES 1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cloud_computing 2. http://communication.howstuffworks.com/cloud-computing1.htm 3. http://communication.howstuffworks.com/cloud-computing2.htm 4. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cloud_computing_user 5. http://communication.howstuffworks.com/cloud-computing.htm 6. http://communication.howstuffworks.com/cloud-computing.htm/printable 7. http://cloudcadet.com/what-is-cloud-computing/ 8. http://askville.amazon.com/advantages-disadvantages-Web-based-Cloud-Computing- Wave/AnswerViewer.do?requestId=16202235