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so much anxiety that ive been drawing blank since the assignmrnt was introduced. - December 7th 2015, 03:19 AM

I keep freaking out over this survey instrument I have to design. I'm not finding enough resources. There's so many rules and I'm scared to mess up. It is like there's a swimming pool and I'm walking around it, dipping my toes but too scared to jump into.


But I also cannot wait till the last minute. He warned us that it takes time to develop and high level of thinking. The phrase "higher thinking" is like my trigger word and so is the word creativity. At this point in college I'm looking at graduating in May and I am frightened to mess up. And that meansmy chance to move out asap is interfered with.

Anyway I have tried hard to come up with questions but there's so many things to keep in mind. It can't be a biased question or a double baralled question or a too general question or a too specific question etc. I feel like my professor did nor equip us for this. Instead he read off his notes about the do and don't anf told stories of bad experiences that ultimately scared me more. I can try going to office hours but I don't like him but my friend went to his office multiple times and said he is a different person outside the classroom, that he seems tough but he is really nice and helpful.

The survey has to be as if it will be done by telephone and it is about the student experience of going to my school. I'm supposed to choose 1-2 topics (so far I chose physical space (is that the same as infrastructure?) and amemeties as the two topics) and it has to be organized and with response choices as well as instructions and a brief segment introducing each section of the survey. The project is only to design it not to carry it out. I'm scared to start. ive made several attemots to start by writing down all my ideas so i have something to work eith but the anxiety is really high this time. Any ideas?
   
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Re: so much anxiety that ive been drawing blank since the assignmrnt was introduced. - December 9th 2015, 06:29 PM

First off...take a deep breath!

You've done well to get to this point, and while it's natural to be anxious about messing things up, it wont help in the long run. I'm sure you'll give it your best shot and if for some reason, it doesn't go the way you planned, I'm sure that you will be able to figure something else out- all wont be lost!

Research questions can be hard to think up, but generally it's good to have open ended questions on a particular subject, so it wont be too broad or too specific. Also, make sure that whatever your questions are, that they can actually be answered too. Try testing the questions on yourself or some friends to see if the question itself makes sense. It's definitely worth having a chat with your professor, even if you don't particularly like him, I'm sure he wants everyone (including you!) to pass.

Infrastructure could be similar to physical space, but not always. I usually see the term in relation to technology or how communities or businesses are set up, but if you wanted, I'm sure you could use the term to mean the layout of the physical classroom too. I did my dissertation on how the classroom can affect learning, so if you ever want a read, you know where to find me

I think when you've got a few ideas written down, your anxiety might lessen a bit. It's just taking that initial step. Try to remind yourself that the sooner you have made a start, the better you'll probably feel about it all.

Hope this helps a bit and hope things work out for you!


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Re: so much anxiety that ive been drawing blank since the assignmrnt was introduced. - December 9th 2015, 06:41 PM

Thank you for the response Holly.
I found out that the professor will not look over my draft if I were to have one because he said that might interfere with him being impartial. That he ends up writing it up for the student.he also said we write our names on the back page for that reason too.

So I sort of changed the topics to infra structure and physical space. I broke it down to conditions (temperature, hazard), functionality, availability/crowdedness and technology and I broke down the spaces into formal (classrooms, offices) and informal (lounges, club rooms, student centers/facilities)

I haven't gone beyond this though and it is due on Monday
   
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Re: so much anxiety that ive been drawing blank since the assignmrnt was introduced. - December 11th 2015, 11:34 AM

I'm sorry to hear that the professor wont look over your draft. Do you know if anyone else will?

I really like your topics, and think that they will definitely fit together. It's a good start! How are you getting on with it now?


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Re: so much anxiety that ive been drawing blank since the assignmrnt was introduced. - December 12th 2015, 08:48 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by DutchWelshWolf View Post
I'm sorry to hear that the professor wont look over your draft. Do you know if anyone else will?

I really like your topics, and think that they will definitely fit together. It's a good start! How are you getting on with it now?
I did go to the writing center but it was really unhelpful. I don't blame them though because they're not trained to help people with survey design. The writing center is intended for help with the academic writing process. Even when I had a creative writing class I felt a similar lost and helpless feeling as I do now but the difference is that creative writing is subjective and the professor's style was rigorous in workload but a safety net in grading. This professor I have now, he is old school and a hard grader. I'm not saying that as a bad thing but I am lost with this survey design. I am not afraid of the challenge but there's something in this assignment that is just not adding up and I feel really unsettled. It is due Monday so that can be seen as either good or bad I am just gonna give my best shot and call it a day (or 3 weeks)

So I've been drafting questions that I know have problems with it but I'm sort of free-writing out all my questions. And then I'm gonna work on precise wording after. Another idea I had was to work on the answer categories first. I was not given any strategies with this and that's what's frustrating but I'm trying to forge my own path. The scary part is the grade. I guess I'm glad I at least attempted this project earlier, despite not having progressed much. Whereas some classmates told me they've have not even touched it.

My biggest concern is with how to pose the question effectively. I am not good with wording and that's the skill I need for this project.

My second biggest concern is what questions I am choosing to ask over others. The artist's choice paradox. Every decision I make is all the other decisions I am rejecting.
   
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Re: so much anxiety that ive been drawing blank since the assignmrnt was introduced. - December 12th 2015, 09:22 PM

Try writing out the question the way you would normally ask it and then focus on rewriting it to fit the psychology/sociology perimeters for questions. I didn't have to design an instrument exactly, but I have some experience writing/asking questions in specific ways. PM me if you need some help.


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Re: so much anxiety that ive been drawing blank since the assignmrnt was introduced. - December 13th 2015, 03:12 PM

I have a particular question I'm having a really hard time framing so hopefully I can get ideas on this?

I want to ask about temperature in the classroom. The thing is, the students may have 1 class or they may have multiple. I want to ask a two-part question, like do you feel very hot in your classroom and if so how often. But how can I ask this in a way that it captures all of the possible classrooms a person may be in? Also there are multiple courses held in the physical classroom so it is possible a person has 2 classes at different days of the week but takes place in the same physical classroom and that classroom may have a freezing to death problem and I wouldn't be able to capture that.

Am I making sense here? I just need some insight on this...I think I'm doing alright otherwise. Just trying my best here
   
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Re: so much anxiety that ive been drawing blank since the assignmrnt was introduced. - December 13th 2015, 07:48 PM

Do your instructions say it has to be written a certain way? if not,

Maybe something like: In general, how would you describe the temperature in classrooms? then they're open to say, some are really hot or cold or most are comfortable etc. If they have one class, they can describe the one class, but making it general covers people who have multiple classes.


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Re: so much anxiety that ive been drawing blank since the assignmrnt was introduced. - December 13th 2015, 11:43 PM

Thank you Katie,

There is no particular way it has to be worded. It just can't be misleading, double barelled or biased.


I finished the survey. I hope it turns out alright
   
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