Economics as a piece of Journalism: Questionnaire breakdown

Contact: Judith Piggott
Principal Lecturer in Economics, Oxford Brookes University
jmpiggott@brookes.ac.uk
Published July 2003

This is an appendix to the Follow up to "Students' assignment as a piece of economics journalism"

Questionnaire 1 – 29 respondents

Question
The instructions were V clear
8
Clear
17
Alright
3
Confusing
0
Very Confusing.
0
The regulations were V Clear
21
Clear
9
Q. Clear
0
Confusing
0
Very Confusing.
1
I am Looking forward
to it very much
8
Looking forward
11
Indifferent
5
Not looking
forward to it
0

Comments (Why?)

"Very much looking forward" or "looking forward to it" comments…

  1. You are classified as a “freelance” writer – can create a new profile that is close to those of the economist, without having to copy them
  2. I am quite interested in this topic
  3. Good choice of topic – v. interesting
  4. Topic seems challenging but I feel that I could do well.
  5. Because it sounds interesting
  6. To write as an amateur reporter of Economist
  7. I really don’t want to fail this module again!!!
  8. It sounds interesting (as if you can go deeply into it)
  9. It is a subject I don’t know much about, so it will allow me to collect information about it.
  10. Original assignment, open for creativity
  11. General interest in the issue
  12. This is the real case study of international trade
  13. Looks really fun
  14. Cos I love assignments

  15. It looks really fun
  16. Because its all so fascinating!
  17. Topical, up to date, real world example

"Indifferent" comments:

  1. Trying to fit it in with the other four assignments
  2. Not area I am particularly good at but I think it’s an interesting angle to approach ie article style
  3. A new subject area for me but I think researching for it will be informative and practical.
  4. Writing in the manner of an economist article may not be easy for me
  5. No comment

"Not looking forward to it" comments:

  1. Economics is not my strong point
  2. It is not a subject I have done before or one that I know a lot about
  3. I have no knowledge of the steel industry – however I like the ida of doing the assignment in the form of a newspaper article
  4. A “refresher” time to brush up on lst year economics at the same time as researching the topic
  5. Economics is not my strong point and time is limited this term

General Comments

  1. Also deals with a dispute – fights are always more interesting
  2. I was pleased that there were a lot of resources mentioned to help us with the coursework.
  3. I know people who are involved in the steel industry so the subject is close to the heart as one says.
  4. The reading list of the assignment is relatively long.

The one student who had not read the assignment did not give a reason why.

Questionnaire 2 – 37 respondents

Question
I found the
instructions
Very easy
10
Easy
21
Not very easy
5
No answer
1
I found the
assignment
Very interesting
5
Interesting
23
Alright
10
Not interesting
0
Really not interesting
0
I found the
assignment
Very challenging
5
Challenging
21
Alright
10
Not challenging
0
Not at all challenging
0
I found the
assignment…
to my course
Very relevant
7
Relevant
23
Alright
5
Not relevant
0
Not at all relevant
1

"I would be interested in doing assignments like this on other modules" – 28 yes, 8 no.

Comments

  1. Too much background reading took far longer than anticipated – it took far too much of the time allowed for the project.
  2. It was difficult and more time consuming than I had expected
  3. Too broad, lot of information and hard to work out what should include. Hard to work out form – how academic and unsure of theory. But good to get us reading, practice researching and gave a new perspective – not stuffy theoretical writing.
  4. It was a bit confusing – too many things that were not very clear. It was not easy. (This student said the instructions were hard to follow)
  5. It was a bit confusing but very interesting. (similarly instructions hard to follow)
  6. Too few words for subject – impossible to cover all points
  7. I think some information on formatting of the assignment would have been valuable as well as some instructions on style.
  8. Research could have been done on my own (not with a given list)
  9. Found it difficult to apply theory
  10. I liked Economist style aspect of this assignment – made it more interesting
  11. It is nice to have topical subject to do it on but I spent more time worrying about style than content
  12. It was very interesting but there was so much information it was difficult to keep to the word limit. It covered a wide range of areas all in one coursework.
  13. Too much news to follow with a lot of related areas
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