Week 57: First day of data collection

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The first half of this week was a little bit depressing. One of the research participants introduced a scholar to me. The scholar is a professor belonging to multiple authoritative institutions and who could give me some advice for reviewing literature. I wrote an email very carefully about myself, my research and the sort of advice I would like to get from the scholar, and I sent it to him. His response was prompt but seemed very cold and made me feel unwelcome. The exchange of our emails was quite stressful for me. I tried to say my self ‘This is another lesson to learn in my fieldwork. Not all professionals are nice!’

The biggest achievement of this week was that I finally conducted the first day of my data collection after waiting for one month in the field, well actually waiting for a year of my PhD programme!

On 1st February, I made observations of eight consultations and took audio recordings of three consultations. All the patients were very nice and supportive, and one of them declined to receive an incentive from me and said ‘I would like to help you for nothing’. In my impression, for most of the situations, patients show their understanding of research more than the professionals (most likely because the professionals are the ones who are primarily being analysed). The process of explaining the research, getting consent from the participants, taking notes and doing the audio recordings, was smooth. I think that stronger the relationship is between the professionals and patients, the easier the processes are for the researcher.

Apart from the observations, my to-do lists include chapter writing and paper editing, which I have not worked on yet this week. I might need solid blocks of time to write up them, maybe weekends.

My achievements in Week 57:
– Conducted eight observations and collected three audio recordings.
– Eight physicians agreed to participate in my research so far!

Goals for Week 58:
– Have a meeting with a scholar and gain advice for my systematic literature review.
– Have a discussion with a research participant and arrange details for further data collection.
– Submit my research proposal to a conference.

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