Abstract – New edit

After reviewing and having my abstract read by some academics including my Honours supervisor, I have reached a point where I have a new (and hopefully final) edit of my abstract. I would appreciate comments and feedback if at all possible. With less than a month to go until my thesis needs to be submitted I am rather nervous. This piece of writing that I have poured my heart and soul into over a period of at least 9-10 months is almost finished.

So where to now?

This is a question that I have been of late trying to ignore. I have applied for a research fellowship in the UK that I am still nervously waiting to hear back from, working with PRIME Research. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t holding out on the opportunity. I will make sure to keep my wonderful blog followers posted of the result.

It is an interesting time in my life, I have the means to do pretty much whatever I want, but with that comes a whole heap of self-doubt and the prospect of being a proper functioning adult with a proper job scares me. Not in the sense that I don’t want to do it, but in the sense that I am not sure I will be good enough.

Anyway, enough of my ramblings. Apologies for the lack of posts of late, I have been keeping very busy at various internship and work experience placements (and of course lets not forget my thesis writing). Here is the new edit of my Abstract. Enjoy. 🙂

Abstract

As many as one in five Australians will suffer Chronic Pain in their life time; it is the fourth most prevalent health issue in Australia and has the single biggest societal impact. This thesis investigates the impact of social media usage in the practice of effective self-management of Chronic Pain, focusing on informal closed support groups on Facebook. It presents a critique of social media exploring what compels people to engage so diligently with social networking systems and societal implications of this engagement.
The use of Convergent Parallel Mixed Method research design in this study is employed to ensure that limitations within the data collection process are minimised.

What is the extent is Facebook used to gain social support for people living with Chronic Pain?
How can gender influence the way people seek support online and the usage of technology? How are family members and carers of people living with Chronic Pain seeking support? These questions aim to be explored throughout this paper.

Results have presented a positive shift of perceived well-being after people have become members of Chronic Pain Facebook support groups. After joining the Facebook support groups, respondents felt that they had a safe place to discuss their conditions with other people who understood their struggles. Even if they did not post within the group, this research has highlighted merely reading other posts in the group have helped to enhance well-being and aid in management of Chronic Pain.

These findings are significant as they support the positive role that social media plays in the self-management of Chronic Pain and the creation of online communities.

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