BCM212 Research Reflection

Upon beginning this research, I was interested in finding out what people thought of my topic. Does a students’ involvement in extra-curricular activities really effect their employability? I encountered a few experiences throughout the process and definitely learnt a lot.

There were a few things that I didn’t expect to happen throughout this research. In the early days of putting out my survey, a participant messaged me and told me that had entered the wrong data, due to how anonymous surveys work and the fact that the participant did not answer every question, the survey was shut down as it was unreliable. This lead me to look into agile research to continue my study. I ended up changing my type of research from focus groups to one-on-one interviews where I asked 4 questions to each subject, I was only able to complete 10 of these, so I turned it into another smaller survey and hoped that this one would not have any flaws.

Although there were flaws, I do believe I did some things well in this research. I took a step back from my stance on the topic and accepted every answer without being bias. This was particularly difficult as I had a reasonably strong view on the research before I began. I also believe that I handled having to change my research method well half way through, this was challenging for me as I believed that I would not have enough time to get everything done once I began again. I was partially correct with thinking that.

When I had to begin my research again, time management turned into an issue. Instead of conducting one or two focus groups, I was conducting 10 individual interviews and I had to remake a survey. This set me back quite a bit of time. If I had have started my research with this, it could have been very successful. Instead, I feel as though it is not to the best standard. Next time I will seek help if I have any questions earlier.

Upon finishing this assessment, I have learnt so much about how research works and how much time and dedication it takes to get it right! I would definitely change a few things if I were doing the research again, time management and better risk analysis being the main two areas. I really enjoyed learning about research.

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Clubs + Sporting = Job Opportunities

When looking through job descriptions for graduate positions, I came across one that I found particularly interesting. Finding the words “If you were not part of clubs, sporting teams or any extracurricular activities, this job may not be for you.” And that lead me to think; Does being part of a club, sports team or having a part-time job during university, increase your chances of getting a graduate position? 

I plan on surveying both past and present students about their experiences with joining clubs, being part of sporting teams and having part time work during their university degree, and if they believe it is beneficial when applying for graduate positions. This will take part over a three week period, leaving a period of one week for analysis and completion of the research task, making it timely.

Most would agree that this research task is relevant because of the type of information that will be found and the target audience involved. It is applicable to not only the people studying now, but  for future students and those who have finished their degrees and are applying for jobs.

The research will be achievable as it is an area that effects all university students, every student that is studying wants a job at the end of their degree and most students would like to find out how to increase their chances of a graduate position. This criteria forms the basis of an achievable research task because it will benefit those who are involved in the research.

The reason behind choosing this task is mostly because I am in a position where I feel that I do not have enough time to join a sporting team or club. Monday to Saturday I am either at university or my part-time job from 8:30am to 5:30pm. Leaving nights and Sundays for extra-curricular activities but Monday, Tuesday and Wednesdays aren’t available either due to other commitments, so, will this effect my employability? Will the fact that I don’t play on a university sport team or go to club meetings mean that I am not a good candidate for a graduate position?

This research task will end in a yes or no answer, not in the way that it will say “Yes, you can only get a job if you have done…” but in the way of “no, your chance of getting a graduate job after uni will not be effected…” I hope to find a distinct difference between the yes and no arguments that the survey finds. Throughout this study I hope to find what helped past students attain their graduate positions and if their extra-curricular activities made a difference to their employers.

I will also be drawing on information from Dr Shelley Kinash of Bond University ‘8 ways to enhance your students’ graduate employability‘ and an article called ‘‘It’s just like an extra string to your bow’: Exploring higher education students’ perceptions and experiences of extracurricular activity and employability‘ by authors Leanne J Thompson, Gordon Clarke, Marion Walker and J Duncan Whyatt of Lancaster University, UK.

These articles discuss the impacts of extra-curricular activities on a graduate employability status. They touch on aspects such as time management, team building, cooperation skills and general skill building that are worthwhile values in the workplace.

I hope that this research will help university students in their decisions of whether or not to join in on extra-curricular activities.

 

Meanwhile, here are some extra links to explore:

http://www.css.edu/the-sentinel-blog/the-importance-of-community-participation-why-college-clubs-and-organizations-matter.html

https://www.bentley.edu/prepared/12-reasons-why-you-should-join-student-organization

https://talentegg.ca/incubator/2010/09/08/improve-your-student-life-and-future-job-prospects-by-getting-involved-at-school-this-year/

https://targetjobs.co.uk/internships/advice/413986-why-extracurricular-activities-will-help-you-get-hired

 

 

 

Our First Anniversary!

I’d like to start by wishing WordPress and myself a happy one year anniversary!

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I logged on today to write a post about how it’s going to be a ‘new uni session, new blogging me’ type year and believe it or not, that notification actually inspired me to try harder.

So here we go:

First things first, this is my 3rd year of uni, second year in this course and I did come into this session as excited for my classes as when I began. Yes, I am a loser, I am aware of that #JustBCMThings. But there are a few things I know that I am going to have to work on this session.

    1. This morning on my first morning walking to my tutorial I saw what I assume was a first year walking to class wearing booty shorts and high heels. I am not here to judge but please, first years, relax. This session I will not make a disgusted face when I see that at 8:30am again. People will be people, I wear jeans and a shirt, she wears high heals, It is not my concern. But also:

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    2. When I come to the library to do my reading report. I should do my reading report, not procrastinate by writing a blog post whilst watching Married at First Sight.

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    3. I have said it 4 times now but 5th time’s a charm, I WILL attend my lectures. For once I have no reason to skip my lectures. They fit in with my timetable perfectly, this is my year! I can do it (ignoring the one lecture that I have already skipped on Monday, oops).
    4. And lastly, this session I am going to enter group projects with a positive view. Yes, in the past, they have had their negative points but if I can be more positive, it will make the whole experience more pleasant for everyone. No one likes it but we all have to do it so we may as well try to make the best of every situation!

So there are my goals, I guess we’ll soon find out if I can follow them or not. Stay tuned for new blog posts as often as I can be bothered to do them.

Good luck with the new session everyone! May we all at least pass our subjects.