Skip to main content

Table 5 Definitions of the perceived costs, subcategories, and examples of participants’ statements

From: Early year undergraduate researchers’ reflections on the values and perceived costs of their research experience

Category Definition Subcategories Definitions Sample participant statements
Perceived cost Participants indicated sacrifices involved in engaging in undergraduate research Effort cost Participants indicated costs associated with the effort needed to engage in research Participant 8: I do not think I would be able to do a Ph.D. program and do research day after day on the same project and everything because it is just so microscopic that sometimes I have a hard time connecting it to the real world and seeing that impact on the real world. I want to do things that will have an impact on the real world, but I think the projects that I would do in a research lab are going to take years to do that.
Psychological/emotional cost Participants indicated their concerns and/or emotional consequences of failure Participant 15: Everything that is done is interesting to me. But doing it myself, I find it very boring and not something that I would like. I guess I do not have the brain capacity to do because I feel kind of dumb in my lab. And I feel like I would not know what to look for and what things to research in that kind of context.
Opportunity cost Participants indicated a loss of valued alternatives Participant 11: I think it was valuable for my personal growth and valuable for my academic growth. It definitely came at a cost and I did not have a lot of time to do other things that I may have wanted to do on campus, other things that require a time commitment because I had to commit a certain amount of time.