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Virtual Research Possibilities

Last semester almost all of my students had to switch face-to-face research to virtual research over the course of a week. This switch was occurring throughout academia due to COVID-19. I spent the summer consulting on dissertation research that needs a Plan A—in person and a Plan B—virtual. For these reasons I decided to emphasize exciting virtual research possibilities during fall semester.

Consider how teachers are using social media apps. These are not just tools for youth—18-24 year olds account for 42% of the video app TikToks users.

Researchers should consider using apps like TikToc to ask participants to post video stories or responses to interview questions. This can be done using a closed group. A forward thinking research ethics board (IRB) should allow consent information to be posted in a TikTok video to the group! I was a member but mostly a chair of an IRB for over 15 years and can absolutely see that working.

Some examples of teachers using TikTok—researchers can too!

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