Aims and significance

The project that I am undertaking is to research an aspect of student experience. Since moving out of home I have learnt that your surroundings and environment can have a major impact on your life and wellbeing in fact, this is what first inspired my research topic. As moved out of home for the first year of my life where I lived on University Accommodation and currently still live there all having their advantages and disadvantages on my own personal lifestyle. I want to research; how does living on campus affect your university experience. I want to ask questions on how people perceive their environment impacts their social life, physical health. I want to know why, and how, people live the way they live. I believe more than ever that this will be an interesting research topic as the impacts of COVID-19 pandemic, with strict laws being brought out every week forcing people to spend more and more time at home.

Method and justification

The method I will use to research this topic is a survey. Surveys are a perfect way of getting a large group of individuals to answer a specific set of questions. I am hoping to gather both qualitative and quantitative data to justify my research. This approach is a worthy fit with my chosen topic as in order for my research to be thorough, just and dependable, I need several participants not just one or two. The reason for this being that I intend to find the overall, social, lifestyle and how it effects the student experience. The questions I intend to ask are; What accommodation do you live at? How many people did you live with? What was the gender and age breakdown of your home? What did your commute to University look like? What degree are you studying? What was your ideal study set up? How many hours a week did you spend on University work on average? How do you think you use to cope with your workload? What were your favourite and least favourite parts of your course? How did you like to socialise? How many hours a week did you spend socialising? Do you think socialising impacted your study? if so, how/why? Did you exercise? if so how and how regularly?

Do you think exercise impacts your study? If so how? What was the overall health of your diet? Do you think your diet affected your study? if so how/why? Did you have any hobbies? if so what? How much time a week did you spend on your hobbies?

Ethical Research Practice

Conducting a survey is the most effective way for this specific research, to meet the obligations of ethical research practices. The reason for this being that the survey I will be conducting is confidential, timely and it doesn’t discuss triggering or harmful topics to potential participants. The above questions do not harm participants or UOW’s reputation. Furthermore, I plan to take the responses that may be viewed as inappropriate and ensure that they are proper and spoken about in the appropriate way to ensure that my research is nevertheless, informative and honest. The questions in my survey allow participants to answer honestly and give me a sufficient amount of information which will ensure my research project stays on task. I have worded the questions to ensure no names will be brought about and some questions allow participants to reveal as little or as much information as they please. If a problem arises where a participant would like to withdraw their data, this will occur in a timely manner however I would like for participants to feel confident enough in me to know that their responses are for strictly research purposes and no private information is needed to be revealed. I intend to reach out to my participants via Twitter using the #BCM212 hashtag as this will ensure only BCM212 students are responding to my survey. I will also be uploading my survey in the Big Spreadsheet on Moodle for individuals to access. Other ways that I will be an ethical researcher is by having a consent form attached to the beginning of the survey, explaining that the responses are strictly for my research project only and no names will be revealed in my final result. In this, it states that my research project may be on social media, including my blog where a link to my blog is inserted for participants to look through and see the way in which I present my BCM work. This consent form will also explain that all participants have a right to withdraw which will not harm their own personal research projects. According to a site found, http://dissertation.laerd.com/principles-of-research-ethics.php , there are five principles when being an ethical researcher. These five principles being, minimising the risk of harm, obtaining informed consent, protecting anonymity and confidentiality, avoiding deceptive practices and providing the right to withdraw. I have thoroughly thought about the above five principles. The risk of harm is minimised by the topic being a more light-hearted one and no reputations or individuals will be harmed in the research process, as stated above, a consent form will be attached to the beginning of the survey. As mentioned, many times, this project is completely confidential, no names will be brought into the research and all participants will be aware of this. I intend to ensure this research project is honest and true which eliminates any deceptive practices and all participants will be aware of their right to withdraw as it is stated in the consent form.

Risk and Time Management Planning

Risk Matrix

The key risks to getting my project done for me are, losing interest in my idea, lack of motivation, procrastination (stalling), running out of time, getting sick and
technological issues. These risks are related to my previous experience with making sure assessments are completed on time. In this risk matrix, the green is not likely to happen and not serious, yellow is likely to happen and not serious (mitigation), and red is very likely and serious.  
Gantt Chart

This shows the strategy I have put in place in order to manage my time. I have added the relevant tasks that I need to do in order to reach my final result and the time scale in which this will occur. Not only this, but it shows the tasks that are dependent on others. Within this Gantt chart, I have enabled much time for risks. The background research for this project does not, in my case, interfere with the surveying task so therefore I will be able to use my time wisely and complete these 2 simultaneously allowing me to have enough time to put my survey together and ensure it is up and running. This is why I have 3 weeks for surveying as it may take some time for many individuals to participate and I have made this survey rely on the collating of the data to ensure that if there is a technological issue, I will have the time to still be able to collect and collate the data. Correspondingly, with the draft project, allowing me time in case of risks.

Reference list:

Dissertation.laerd.com, 2012. Principles of Research Ethics, L… Dissertation < http://dissertation.laerd.com/principles-of-research-ethics.php > [Accessed: 25 April 2020]

Gerard, R., 2020. How to use a Risk Matrix, i-Sight < https://i- sight.com/resources/risk-assessment-matrix/ > [Accessed: 20 April 2020]

Manktelow, J. 2015. Gantt Charts Planning and Scheduling Team Projects, Mind Tools. 2020 < https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newPPM_03.htm > [Accessed: 21 April 2020]