Since joining the School of Journalism and Mass Communication I have been the target of various surveys, research tests, and focus groups. The University of Minnesota loves its list serve emails and the SJMC loves them as well. Every week I receive several emails asking me to participate in their research efforts and then it hit me, is this method actually effective for them? I personally do not participate in any studies unless a class requires it. The document below includes two screen shots of emails I received in the same day asking me to participate.
I understand that it is convenient to email the list serve in order to try and get interest but where should the line be drawn? With so many emails being sent out students are becoming desensitized to them and just delete them as they reach their inbox.
The first email wants students to join a focus group to provide information about the Journalism Library. The second email seeks input about two journalism classes. I feel like the most effective way to get results for these would be to survey people that are actually in the library. They should select a class or two to go into and have them fill out the survey as part of the class. Research is such a big part of journalism that it should be normal to interrupt a class for a survey. For participants in the second email, they should go directly into those classes as well as upper division classes and have them take the survey.