Young People's Views

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A guide to involving young people in social research.

Why research is important and how it should be conducted with young people

15 students from Shawlands Academy in Glasgow - Mohammed, Megan, Vincent, Hassan, Aksa, Zahra, Vanessa, Mohamed, Nankee, Heather, Tanzeela, Barry, Fatma, Ali, Campbell – write about their visit to Newcastle University to develop a student-centred research protocol about the research that takes place in their school.

On 12th and 13th February, we visited Newcastle University to work on a research protocol that we have been developing with our teacher, Ms Sinclair, and Professor Peter Hopkins, who had recently visited the school to do research about racism and geopolitics. We were joined on the trip by another teacher, Mr Wright; Christina MacDonald and Lauren Cameron, both from Glasgow City Council Education Services came along too.

Research is about studying things we don’t yet know about or don’t fully understand. It can be carried out by observation or through qualitative and/or quantitative methods. We think research is important because: it is good to find new information; it is a great way to find out new things; and you are able to see different opinions from people on the subject. It is also important because the only way for humans to excel and expand our understanding and knowledge is to carry out research and unlock new experiences. It is in human nature to attempt to advance and create new theories. Therefore, research is essential.

Before taking part in research, we think it is important to know what the research will be about and what is going to change to a result of it. Once research is finished, we think we should get feedback from the researchers telling us what they found and if the research was successful or not.