The purpose of research, participants, and results

Introduction

Research is significant in different professionals more so in academia. It is the basis for policy formulation and academic excellence. This essay has critically appraised a research article using the Critical Appraisal Skills Program (CASP) (Singh, 2013). Academic performance is essential among college students, yet there are challenges that Student academic life is filled with internal and external expectations leading to stress. The level of stress is mostly reported among adolescents. They are more vulnerable to stress since they are in a transitional stage that involves both social and individual development. It is important to understand the sources of academic stress and how it impacts academic performance for appropriate intervention strategies. The article has explained the research without being extensive or explaining the results. The abstract explains the purpose of research, participants, and results (Frazier, et al., 2019). It allows for the understanding of the limitations and possible recommendations on the improvements on errors and points of further research.

PART A – Critical appraisal

Authorship

There are different professional, ethical and operational issues associated with the authorship of academic papers. Short term researchers have guidelines on authorship by supporting equitable system and follow formal requirements for institutional research policy. The research has demonstrated the ability to evaluate research evidence to avoid the assumption that all published sources of research are of equal validity and merit. Even in the critical appraisal of the research, we acknowledge past research and follow the concept of critical appraisal skills program (Singh, 2013). The research utilizes current literature to guide the discussion and reflection to come up with a conclusive analysis of the research article. The research article embraces ethical practice by acknowledging borrowed material and offering direction or permission for further research concerning the findings and topic of research.

Research question& Justification

The abstract outlines the research question and objectives of the study. The aims of the study have been concisely stated and numbered to reduce the possibility of inter-researcher confusion. It helps the researchers to focus on the research question. Readers can easily understand the research objectives (Collins, 2018). The authors clearly discussed their reasons for focusing on the relationship between stress and academic performance among college students. They agree and conclude that stress leads to poor academic performance among college students. They have also used previous research to confirm the objectives, findings and conclusions of the research (Frazier, et al., 2019). Understanding stress as an impediment to academic performance requires a student approach to research. The use of a qualitative approach to research allows the researchers to comprehensively understand the interplay of demographic information, psychological factors and academic performance.

Research design

The research design uses both qualitative and quantitative approaches that are appropriate to this type of research (Frazier, et al., 2019). Qualitative research is essential in explaining the attitudes, experiences and emotions of participants in relation to the impacts of stress on their performance. Qualitative research analyzes social phenomena hence gives individuals an opportunity to understand what people experience and why (Williams, 2010). Participants were asked to complete online surveys that assessed the perceived barriers to academic performance, GPA, psychological factors, and demographic information. Also, Martin & Gynnild (2011) recommends the use of past research to incorporate primary and secondary data to form theory. The grounded theory design explains the social phenomenon and human behaviour. In this case, it would add more insight into this research as it aims at discussing behaviour in relation to performance. Stress is directly linked to performance whereby lower GPA is closely associated with stress.

Research methods

The researchers used a considerable sample of (N=8,997) from 20 Midwestern schools to find a representative group that will make sure all participants contribute to the data (Frazier, et al., 2019). The purposive sampling method was aimed at finding participants who experienced stress and how it impacted their performance. However, purposive sampling may be subject to bias because it is highly targeted and forms a specific group. On the other hand, the method assures that the correct target group is selected (Etikan, Musa & Alkassim, 2016). The process of collecting representative stress sample has been explained through the involvement of students from different schools.

Collection of data using semi-structured interviews was appropriate in addressing the research question and objectives. It was not clearly indicated about the subjective experiences of the students to determine the level of stress due to lack of recordings. The researchers should have stated the location of interviews to add to the social context of the surveys. One would be left wondering if the surveys were carried out in a controlled environment.

Results and Limitations

The results show a clear statement of findings whereby the data has thematically been analyzed and discussed in a logical manner as per the aims of the research (Frazier, et al., 2019). Clearly presented results allow the reader to find the major points and recommend possible action points (Hinshaw, 2011). The use of specific quotes from the surveyor interviews increases the dependability of the results. The researchers managed to challenge their study by referencing other authors. It shows the lack of prejudice and bias where one would want to favour their results.

However, the credibility and value of the research are limited. The researchers failed to discuss the credibility of the findings to reduce the level of bias. The findings relate to the current state of stress in schools and do not borrow much from past research. The credibility of research can be improved by giving the participants or respondents the findings to give their views. The value of research is limited because the researchers have acknowledged that the research is only a basis for more research.

PART B – Enablers and Barriers

Stress in university students can affect academic performance. Based on the scenario, Choose, a first-year international student is worried about the possibility of completing her three-year program if she cannot even manage to pass her first year. Joanne’s advice to encourage her to pick herself up is the first step to overcoming the effects of stress. It brings us to our research question of whether stress can affect academic performance in university students. The research answers the research question based on the findings from a study conducted among college students.

Based on the findings from the research (Frazier, et al., 2019), students who reported that stress affected their performance had lower GPAs. The results are consistent with Joanne’s initial advice to Chooseya asking her not to worry as it would lead to more failure. The research concludes that stress-reduction interventions should target psychological factors that relate to perceiving stress as a barrier and to good performance. The study successfully examined the accuracy of the perceptions about stress and academic performance. The researchers identified demographic and psychological factors among students with different perceptions of how stress affects performance.

There are more factors besides stress that may lead to student underperformance in college. However, the research was limited to the perceptions of stress and its relation to academic performance. More research should be done to carry on with the current findings to look into other factors that may lead to student underperformance in college. It is because; students are engaged in many activities that may not because stress or underperformance directly. The research has affirmed Joanne’s indication that it would lead to more failure if Chooseya chose to be more stressed.

Conclusion

The research has a strong background and objectives that add to a good presentation and structure. It has utilized qualitative methods of research to gain views from students to clarify the question about the relationship between stress and student performance. The researchers may not be building a new theory but notwithstanding, it builds on past research and perceptions to provide answers to some pressing questions in academia. The results are clearly presented as per the aims of the research. the level of bias and credibility requires more consideration. The research should inform future practice by providing a basis on which more research can be done. The original data and strategy for improvement make the data values in the field of academia. Anyone can assess the findings and give their opinion or recommendations to further for implementation of the findings or direct future research.

References

Frazier, P., Gabriel, A., Merians, A., & Lust, K. (2019). Understanding stress as an impediment to academic performance. Journal of American College Health, 67(6), 562-570.

Singh, J. (2013). Critical appraisal skills programme. Journal of Pharmacology and Pharmacotherapeutics, 4(1), 76.

Collins, H. (2018). Creative research: the theory and practice of research for the creative industries. Bloomsbury Publishing.

Martin, V. B., & Gynnild, A. (Eds.). (2011). Grounded theory: The philosophy, method, and work of Barney Glaser. Universal-Publishers.

Etikan, I., Musa, S. A., & Alkassim, R. S. (2016). Comparison of convenience sampling and purposive sampling. American journal of theoretical and applied statistics, 5(1), 1-4.

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