BCM212 Reflection

Well, I guess that’s it for BCM212,

This semester has been anything but a breeze, but it definitely feels good to come of in one piece. I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t learnt quite a bit about research practice (and as corny as it sounds, myself) along the way.

To start off the subject, I picked a topic I was enthusiastic about – single-use plastic and all its glory. I think an important factor for me was picking something that needed to be changed, in hopes that if I researched and wrote about it well enough, it might end up actually doing some good. This was a good driving factor that stayed with me the majority of the semester – until a swarm of assignments began chasing me down and biting me on the bum.

I found myself facing multiple challenges throughout this task. Things like my poor time management, Twitter ineptitude, low survey participation, and personal motivation all influenced my end result. A big factor in the outcome of my work was participation levels – I had a considerable amount of trouble actually getting students from our small sample pool to voice their opinions, and I think one of the reasons was my poor twitter performance. Consequently, I would lose motivation to work on the assignment – forever awaiting those magical 50 responses to just appear. If there was a second time around, I would definitely try and conquer the twitter-verse a little more, putting more time into the advocacy of my surveys.

Eventually, I ended up with two surveys, yielding 36 and 12 responses respectively, that gave me enough information to derive an angle I wanted to approach the topic with.

Once I finalised my data collection, I actually found it quite easy to write the opinion piece. The results, despite their scarcity, presented a pretty clear trend coming from the answers to the question:
‘Are you aware of any initiatives at UOW pertaining to the reduction of single-use plastic?’

When writing that question, I was hoping to see which of UOW’s initiative worked well enough for students to consciously utilise. The results displayed that 75% of my participants weren’t aware of a single one – so from here I had my question, ‘Why?’ Having an angle to work really assisted in the flow of my work. It just seemed to pour out of me, and I really enjoyed creating the persuasive aspects within my opinion piece.

Despite a very fragmented semester, I discovered that I really enjoyed the data analysis aspect of research, and more so that my data collection ability has significant room to improve. I’d quickly like to thank the subject teachers and tutors, they did an amazing job of moving (almost-seamlessly) into the online learning environment.


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