At the end of our class meeting last week, I was given two main tasks for homework. The first of these was to reach out to the OSRP department to ask about certain elements of the IRB process; the second was to write out a draft of the entire Introduction section of my thesis. I did the first task, and I was not very pleased with the result. I finished 2/3 of the second task.
From the response to my email to OSRP, I learned that the target population for my research would not be considered a vulnerable population, but it would be considered a high-risk population. That was good news. The bad news came in the answer to my second question regarding the equivalency of the NIH ethical treatment of human research subjects training and the CITI training listed on the IRB application. As of May 2017, Kean no longer accepts the NIH training. At first, I was a little annoyed. I thought I’d just have to do a similar course that might take me a couple hours of my time. When I looked into the CITI training, however, I learned that it is something for which I’d have to pay at least $60. Or at least that’s what it looks like. I am aware of the great responsibility researchers take on when they endeavor to use human subjects in their work. I appreciate the need for would-be researchers to learn about this responsibility. I do not, however, appreciate having to pay $60 to be inconvenienced and learn something I was already certified (for free!) as having learned. Maybe I sound stingy or petty, but I’m just frustrated right now… I’m really going to have to discuss this with my professor.
As far as my Introduction, I was able to write out drafts of the overviews for two of the three communities I will be examining, GremCorps and CCCats. This included selecting and placing the images I would like to use in those sections. I did not get to finish the Griffia overview, as Griffia is a lot more complicated than the other two in terms of the mechanics and lore. Unlike GremCorps and CCCats, which are focused around a single species, Griffia is actually a union of three different groups with dozens of species. It also contains more gamified elements. I anticipate using the coming week on the Griffia section alone.