Are students aware of how much money they spend on coffee?

Coffee can be anything you want it to be – a wake–me-up, a winter warmer, a hug in a mug, a thing to hold in your hand when you awkwardly walk in to your first class. Takeaway coffee is for nearly everyone – though whether it’s a double shot flat white in your paper cup or mocha, you’re still spending that money. Don’t agree? Well then that’s probably a positive for your bank account if you don’t automatically line up for a coffee when you have time to kill before a class. I know I do, I work my bus timetable around doing this. But how much money are students really spending on their daily coffee? Is it enough to make a significant difference if they were to instead bring coffee from home in a keep cup? This is what I intend to research, fuelled by my curiosity.

Based on my research I have already done on CBSnews.com, I found out that for an average priced coffee ($3.25), to buy for entire week would cut you short by $16.25. Though for an entire year, you would be potentially losing $780. Sounds like enough to buy those textbooks you’ve been complaining about buying, right? So why do students usually buy a coffee without thinking of the cost? Is it because it is so cheap and convenient? I know these are my reasons. Though I intend on delving deeper into this topic and researching just what students really think about their coffee habit – if they do have one – and how much they are really willing to spend on it. I will do this though data collection and secondary research, while observing through

From a sociological point of view, coffee can be seen as a social stimulant – with symbolic value to our day-to-day rituals. I aim to find out if students are willing to spend so much money annually on takeaway coffee out of habit – or if they do it consciously – well aware of how much money they are spending. Ultimately, my research question is, “How much money do students spend on coffee weekly and are students intending to pay this much? ”

Throughout my years of scrolling through news and magazine websites, I have fleetingly noted the amount of articles based on coffee habits – occasionally even noticing an article on how much a daily coffee really does cost you in the long run. Therefore, I did have the idea in the back of my mind already – and when I went to my mum asking her for help on the research topic – we discovered the aforementioned question. I struggled initially with the idea of researching a question because I was curious, as it is something I already do in my day-to-day life. I often Google something, no matter where I am if I have a probing question or idea in my mind, or I will ask someone. I usually find what I am looking for, so it was a struggle to find something I was curious about I hadn’t already answered for myself to do with University. Though to answer this question, I would have to engage myself in both primary and secondary research in order to gain the amount of knowledge and understanding I need.

I have discovered a particular article written by CBSnews, recounting and averaging how much people spend on takeaway coffee’s every day, week and year – and why they are likely to do this. This article has peaked my curiosity about the coffee-spending habits of students at UOW, and I think it will be worthwhile to look further into the idea of how much students really do spend, and whether they intend to be spending this much – is it subconscious? I intend to do this research by using research methods such as focus groups, surveying students on their coffee habits, and engaging in human observation. My research will be predominantly based on the ways students are influenced to buy a daily coffee when they are at University, as well as how much they are spending and whether they are actively aware of the prices that build up over time when engaging in the act of buying a coffee.

Gregg, David. “Coffee”. CBSnew.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 24 Mar. 2016. “http://www.cbsnews.com/htdocs/pdf/012909_coffee.pdf”

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