This month I’ve finally been able to release my questionnaire, which is a relief.
After my and my supervisor’s attempts at piloting gained a grand total of 7 participants, I wasn’t feeling optimistic. But checking over the results from the 7 pilots showed that my questions were well-designed, and worked better than expected.
I’d expected that I would have to revise the survey inbetween piloting and releasing, but my alpha scores were high enough (a fixable 0.655 for the lowest section, up to a surprising 0.926 for one section) that we could release it straight away.
After rushing into uni to confirm that I had done the stats correctly, we were ready to release. It was only as my supervisor was drafting an email to spread the word that I realised quite how many people could potentially reply to the survey; the pool of staff receiving a link to the survey was over 1,600 people. That’s not even including postgraduate students.
By this morning, less than a day after going live, I’ve received 18 responses.
This is mostly from how the study was explained, I think- my supervisor emphasised how open access is a necessary component for the REF (framework that academic research is judged upon) and how the information gained from my study could help UWE shape their rules and guidelines about open access and resources.
Also, I changed my part of the email to say that people don’t need to be knowledgeable about open education/ OERs etc. in order to take the survey, which I’m hoping should help. Not including any statement like that in the pilot request may have been part of why we had so few responses, as people may have interpreted the study as being for people who were already involved in open access/open education.
Typically, surveys get about a 20-30% response rate, meaning we have the potential for 300 responses over the next month… while I doubt we’ll get that many, having that large a sample size would be amazing, as I’m pretty sure that would make ours the largest study of its type.