Exciting Research Study for Youth Twitter Users (age 15-18): We Need Your Help!


Welcome to a research project designed by Michigan State University (PhD) student (and fellow HASTAC Scholar) Benjamin Gleason. 
Email: gleaso77@msu.edu
Twitter: @BWGleason
What we're doing: We need young people who use Twitter (aged 15-18) to help us learn about how and why they use Twitter. In addition, we want to learn about how people tell the story of who they are on Twitter-- what pictures they post, what hashtags they use, who they interact with, what they tweet or retweet. 
Who is involved: Michigan State University PhD student Benjamin Gleason (under the supervision of Dr. Christine Greenhow)...and you!
How will I participate? There will be 8-10 young Twitter users (aged 15-18) selected to participate in the study. 
If I participate in the study, what does that mean?: Great question! If you participate in the study, there will be two parts of the study. 
  • Stage 1 will require very little additional participation from you. Participants will simply tweet as they normally do, and I will pull your tweets to learn from them, paying attention to who participants people interact with, what they tweet/retweet about, if they use hashtags, etc.
  • Stage 2 of the study will consist of interviews with select research participants about their specific Twitter use. The interview will be guided by the analysis of tweets completed in Stage 1. Participants will take part in 60 minute interviews (or a series of interviews), which will be audio-recorded. 
How will I benefit from participating in the study? Participants will have the opportunity to interact with interesting educational researchers who are fascinated by how youth use language (including words, images, and friendships) to express themselves and tell their story. In addition, participants will be taking part in a relatively new area of research-- literacy practices and identity construction in social media-- that is emerging as a valuable site of inquiry. By joining the study, participants will contribute their experience to knowledge building. Finally, participants may benefit from a "behind the scenes" look at how research happens in higher education-- something few high school students have the chance to do. 
What no financial benefits for participants? Participants will be compensated for participating in the interview ($30), if they are selected to be interviewed. Not all research participants will be interviewed. 
Will my privacy be protected? Participants' confidentiality will be protected to the maximum extent allowable by law.  No personally identifiable information will be reported in any research product.  Moreover, only trained research staff will have access to your responses.  The data collected for this research study will be protected on a password protected computer or in a locked file cabinet on the campus of Michigan State University for a minimum of three years after the close of the project.  Only the appointed researcher’s and the Institutional Review Board will have access to the research data. Within these restrictions, results of this study will be made available to you upon request. No names will be reported in any research products, including papers or presentations. 

How do I sign up? We'll get to that! Before you sign up, you should know that participation in this study is voluntary, and participants may choose not to participate at all, or participants may refuse to answer certain questions or discontinue participation in the interview at any time without penalty.  You may also withdraw your consent to participate at any time without penalty.

Ready to participate in the study? Send a Direct Message (DM) on Twitter to @BWGleason before April 1 that describes your interest. "I want to participate in the study" or similar words. Or, you can email gleaso77@msu.edu before April 1 with a message that says "I want to participate in the study" or similar words. 

More information available at https://sites.google.com/site/digitalliteracyontwitter/home or by contacting gleaso77@msu.edu


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