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Research reflections

Research in the social sciences is frequently a reflexive practice. Here the research team briefly reflect on their experience of undertaking research as part of a collaborative team and on their research findings. A more detailed reflection from each member of the research team can be found in the interim report.

"Researching in The Reinvention Centre was not only a very useful learning
experience, but also enjoyable and rewarding. I found the team based
aspect of the research worked especially well and the support from more
experienced researchers invaluable."

Alex Mockridge, 2nd year MORSE

"My personal experiences as a Warwick undergraduate definitely influenced my
work on this project.I enjoyed reading about other departments, especially
as I had chosen Theatre Studies and Chemistry which are completely different
from anything that I had studied at University (I am a PPE student).The fact
that we are undergraduate researchers had a real impact on this project. It
was not only important that we were researching as undergraduates when we
worked alone, but also that we were working in an interdisciplinary group
with students from three different year groups and three different degree
courses. "

Tiyi Morris, 3rd year PPE

"I see myself more now as both a learner and contributor to the education
process. The concept of academic literacy has made me realize that my
education should equip me to engage not just with my lecturers but also
with practitioners, employers, local and international communities.
Consequently, I have gained an appreciation for the different components
of higher education and the importance of constantly reviewing and even
challenging the role of teachers, researchers and students in this

Kagwe Njoroge, 4th year MORSE

"Being a second history student, I had little experience of research
methodology or research-projects and at times it felt like a very
intensive learning experience. Reading about discourse analysis and
content analysis was completely different to the historical texts I am
familiar with. However, as I used the two types of research methods,
I soon realised how the skills I’ve acquired from historical analysis
could be easily applied to the discourse analysis undertaken in this
project. "

Sarah Smith, 3rd year Histoy

"During the research I was acutely aware of the position of power that I would hold
in relation to my undergraduate research colleagues… I remained conscious of the
fine balance needing to be struck between giving guidance and advice that comes from
experience of having already worked as part of a research team and the falling into
the didactic position of telling the undergraduates what it is they needed to do and
in doing so negating their own thoughts, ideas and creativity that the values of the
Reinvention Centre inform me are so crucial to the process of education, both for
the undergraduates themselves and for myself. Reflecting back on the previous eight
weeks, at the moment I can only hope that the relaxed yet rigorous team meetings in
which much intellectual work was done were as empowering for the Undergraduates as
they should be."

Danny Wilding, 2nd year MA Social Research (part-time)

"I was most impressed by our working together as an interdisciplinary team and the abilities of the four undergraduate students – none of whom were sociologists – to make themselves familiar with research methods which were located way outside their home disciplines. I would say that this was the most overwhelming part of the research process. Doing this research project also taught me that what matters most is that we believe in the people we work with. They turned from students into researchers because there was the expectation that they would excel and acquire research skills. However, whilst we were working well as a research team, it cannot be denied that we also had different roles that stemmed from our different degrees of research experience. I also learned a lot in relation to mentoring students. The intensity of mentoring and guiding the students’ research reminded me of the role that PhD supervisors take with their students. However, no comparison seems quite accurate for our little research marathon. After all, there has been a real team spirit and commitment of everyone involved in the project. Shortly before we reached the final line for what is now a preliminary report, we exchanged smiles, the six of us. Yes, we have been a real team."

Elisabeth Simbuerger, postdoctoral researcher (Sociology/The Reinvention Centre)