Understanding research with children and young people
Understanding research with children and young people

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Understanding research with children and young people

5 Some examples of research presentations

Another way that children and young people can demonstrate their expertise is in the quality of the presentations they prepare to illustrate their research projects. Sometimes adults can be sceptical of their abilities to contribute to, or to carry out research successfully. However, they have their own experience of the issues under question and this reinforces their ability, their competence, to present findings that are valuable and valued. Children and young people’s competence can be seen as different from that of adults: it is not necessarily lesser, and in some areas it may be greater. Remember the Art project you read about in Session 2, where the adult perspective was an obstacle to the children’s expression, and the overall result was frustrating and unsuccessful.

In Session 1 you watched a video of some children talking about their own research projects. Here you are going to have a look at a sample of their powerpoint presentations. As you look through them, consider how the TRREEE (Trust, Respect, Rights, Ethics, Expertise, Experience) principles underpin the children’s projects. Note in what way the young researchers have planned and prepared their research, and how they show understanding of ethical issues and a high level of sensitivity towards research participants.

Research carried out by children and young people can bring about changes to their lives and offer ideas as to how things could be done better in future. There are challenges in achieving such changes, but examples can be found of projects that have influenced organisations, policies and systems. One such example is a youth-led participatory action research project focussing on increasing governmental support for indigenous adolescents in Guatemala, which led to all mayoral candidates signing an agreement that they would implement the adolescents’ policy proposal to fund their Office of Childhood and Adolescence. You can find a fuller description of this, and similar projects, here:

And finally: it is important to recognise that children and young people have a right to express a view, but that sometimes they might choose not to, and this should be respected. Not all children will want to express a view or to undertake their own research. If the right to participate is to be upheld, however, all children should be given the opportunity; it is not acceptable to limit the opportunity to some children and exclude others.

You are nearly at the end of this Session, which has focussed on the TRREEE principles which should underpin your research. Can you remember what they are? What have you learned from all the materials in this Session that will guide you as you start to plan your research project?

Activity 9

Timing: Allow approximately 15 minutes.

Note three key things you have learned from what you have read and seen so far in this session:

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Based on what you are planning to do, how you will use this new knowledge to influence your project?

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