Participants: For our wellbeing tool we decided to approach students from around our own school as our group was situated in a school and so we could recruit most of our participants from this specific environment. We aimed to get this age range as young people might be experiencing stress due to exams or assessments or other reasons that could cause it. Our aim was to reduce stress and increase people’s moods and happiness which is why we aimed for a specific age range because as we move on to high school it may even be the first time some people are exposed to stress and they might not know how to deal with it or what to do so we thought it would be good to approach students for our tool. We focused on aiming for 100 participants as it’s a good number that gives us a wide variety of people and it reduces the risk of getting more internet trolls.
Setting: Participants were recruited in the high school using a QR code with a brief explanation of the project. It was also shared through the group’s Instagram account. Once the school went into lockdown one of the supporter teachers shared a link to the wellbeing tool via email and TEAMS.
Materials: To create our wellbeing tool, we decided to compile all of the collected photos and selected music to create a website. We thought this was the best way to recruit participants as most of our focus age group (high schoolers) can have easy access to the link on their personal device (e.g mobile phone, laptop etc). We made the website accessible to participants by copying the websites QR code onto a blank word document and printing paper copies to stick around our school. We thought this was a quick, unique and easy way to intrigue people to test our tool as people can easily scan it without the hassle or time of having to type in a long link. It could also make people curious to see where the QR code takes them.
1. To start with, we all got together and thought about the best and most efficient way to spread the word. In the end, we decided that a QR code placed around the school would get the students attention enough to encourage them to participate.
2. We also added an incentive for them to try it out, in case they weren’t already convinced. Every participant that completed the survey got the chance to enter a prize draw to win an Amazon gift voucher worth £20. This made people more likely to get involved as they would not see it as a waste of time.
3. We then placed the QR code around the school, focusing on the densely populated areas, like the hub and busier hallways.
4. We also handed the codes to students in other years as they spoke to their peers, to help utilise the word of mouth. We found that it was easier to recruit participants while speaking face to face as we could make an attempt to persuade them.
5. Finally, each of us put a link to the survey on our social media, to try and reach our peers that may not go to the same school. Although this helped get many more people, it also got people that weren’t in the correct age range, which took up time whilst going through the results.
6. Once participants had been recruited they were invited to test the Cool, Calm & Collective online wellbeing tool via the team’s webpage on Project Soothe’s Young Citizen Scientists website here. The wellbeing tool webpage also provided a link for participants to complete an Evaluation Questionnaire to provide their feedback after testing the tool.