Questionnaire Information

A PDF version of this information is available here: Questionnaire Information

Information and Informed Consent: Questionnaire

Threshold concepts in connectivist MOOCs: A Phenomenological Exploration


This questionnaire is one component of a research study that seeks to gain an understanding of the experiences of participants in rhizo15. The goal of this study is to identify threshold concepts, the types of knowledge and skills necessary for successful participation in this type of learning environment. It is hoped that the findings of this study may offer practical contributions around design, pedagogy, and practices for similar online courses in the future.


If you agree to participate, you will be asked to complete two questionnaires, one at the beginning of rhizo15 and one at the end. Each questionnaire should take approximately 10 to 15 minutes to complete. The pre-course questionnaire will ask you about your anticipated engagement with rhizo15, your use of various technologies, and how you approach learning online.


The results of this study will be reported in a graduate dissertation, which is a public document, and may also be published in journal articles and books. As well, you may request a copy of the final paper in person, by phone, or by email using contact details provided below.


It is unlikely there is anything in this study that could harm you or be bad for you, and the topic of the study should not require you to share any sensitive or personal information. However, it is possible that on the questionnaire you may be asked questions that could make you feel uncomfortable or may bring up unpleasant memories. You do not have to answer any questions or share any information that you do not want to. Please let the researcher know if you have concerns or experience any distress. We are able to provide referral to counseling if requested; similar support is also likely available through well-being programs in your workplace, educational institution, or community.


There are some possible benefits to you as a participant in the study. You will be given the opportunity to reflect on your learning in rhizo15. This may help you better understand how you learn and could help you develop more effective approaches to learning in the future. Further, you will be asked about a variety of different technologies and types of learning experiences. It is possible through this you may become aware of potentially useful resources you have not previously been exposed to. Others may also benefit from this study. We hope that by identifying the knowledge and skills necessary for successful participation in this type of course, and by understanding some of the challenges participants face, our study may contribute to the design of similar courses in the future.


Your confidentiality will be respected throughout the study. Methods used to ensure your identity and personal information are protected include:

• Any identifying information provided on the questionnaire (email addresses) will be replaced by a coded identifier used to link data from different sources (i.e. the pre and post course questionnaires, data collected for participants in the in-depth component of the study).

• Data from all questionnaires will be aggregated before analysis.

• The questionnaire and responses will be hosted through a private, password protected account on the Fluid Surveys site. This site is hosted within Canada, and meets the requirements of the B.C. Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA).

• Throughout the study, digital data (including any code keys) will be stored on the researchers’ password protected computer, with backups stored on a password-protected drive. At the end of the study, this data will be encrypted and stored on a password-protected drive for five years and then destroyed.

• Only the members of the research team will have access to any of the data, passwords, or the Fluid Survey account.

• In publications, participants will be identified by pseudonyms and descriptions will be altered or removed as necessary to protect confidentiality. However, we acknowledge that despite these measures, due to the nature of data collected from online sources, it may still be possible to trace the identity of participants. Before any data in which your identity could possibly be evident is shared we will contact you to obtain your explicit consent to the publication of such data.


This research is being conducted by Ashley Shaw, as part of the requirements for the PhD degree, under the supervision of Dr. Don Krug. If you have any questions or would like further information with respect to this study, please contact any member of the research team using the details below.

Principal Investigator:

Dr. Don Krug

Department of Curriculum and Pedagogy, UBC


Ashley Shaw (Ph.D. candidate)

Department of Curriculum and Pedagogy, UBC


If you have any concerns about your treatment or rights as a research subject and/or your experiences while participating in this study, you may contact the Research Subject Information Line at the UBC Office of Research Services at (604) 822-8598 or if long distance email or call toll free 1-877-822-8598.


Taking part in this study is entirely up to you. You have the right to refuse to participate in this study. If you decide to take part, you may choose to pull out of the study at any time without giving a reason and without any negative outcomes. If you choose to withdraw from the study at any point, all data pertaining to your participation will be destroyed. By completing the questionnaire, it is assumed that you give your consent to participation.

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