I am currently sitting in the Sylvan Lake Municipal Library working on my stretch experience. I decided to take some time off and go to the Calgary Stampede and while my partner is attending a work event in Sylvan Lake I decided to sit down and take some time to blog about my stretch experience so far!
For my stretch experience I am doing a qualitative research project on Edmonton’s chronic pain community and support groups for patients with chronic pain. Initially I wanted to go to London to work with homeless youth but unfortunately I was unable to get in contact with the organizations there. I then was left to come up with a new plan for my stretch experience.
I was in a car accident 9 years ago and was diagnosed with chronic pain. I have known for a long time that I wanted to be a clinical psychologist who specializes in patients with chronic pain. I realized that I could use my stretch experience as an opportunity to look at the sense of community that people living with chronic pain share in Edmonton. I also wanted to look at how support groups play a role in the community in Edmonton.
To do this I decided I wanted to do qualitative research and I thought conducting a focus group would be the best way to get information about Edmonton’s chronic pain community. After speaking with multiple people I realized I would have to send in an ethics application in order for me to conduct the focus group.
I realized not long after I did some research on ethics applications that I had a long road ahead of me. I had conducted research before but I never had to go through the process of coming up with an idea of my own, creating an ethics application, and gathering all the information I needed to put it together. I am currently working on putting together the ethics application which I hope to send in soon. It took a while for me to get all the information I would need in order to start the ethics application.
So far the stretch experience has definitely challenged me and pushed me to make difficult decisions about my research project. I am excited to see what the next month and a half holds. My next challenge after submitting my ethics application is waiting to see if it gets accepted or if I will have to redo it. I hope it won’t take too long so I can get started conducting my focus groups!
Thanks for reading about my stretch experience so far!