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Informed consent is the process whereby human participants in a research project are provided with all the information needed so that they can decide whether to participate. The elements that must be provided are:
- name(s) of investigator(s), school, project title, adult supervisor, his/her address and telephone number;
- purpose of the research;
- description of benefits from participating;
- description of risks from participating.
- details of time commitment required;
- details of any remuneration;
- plans to ensure the confidentiality of data;
- details about the right to withdraw at any time for any reason;
- information about how to communicate a decision to withdraw from the study,
- a statement that the project has been reviewed and received ethics approval from whatever authority was consulted.
- details of how feedback will be given to participants;
This information is provided in a Letter of Information that is given to each participant to keep. A separate Informed Consent Permission Form records their receipt of the letter, and agreement to participate.
Letter of Information - Example
A Study of the On-Line Video Game Community
I am a student in Basingstoke Elementary School who is preparing to enter the Basingstoke Science & Technology Fair, - http://www.bsf.zz - and the information I collect will be used for this project. This letter provides the information required for you to make an informed decision about whether to participate.
|Name of Investigator||Alfred Applebyfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Adult Supervisor||Alison Applebyemail@example.com||519-123-4567|
Purpose of the Research
Benefits from Participating
You will learn a little about Video Games and the on-line gaming community.
Risks from Participating
There are no risks associated with this project
Time Commitment Required
The estimate of the time commitment required is from 30 minutes to 3 hours. The interviews will take as much or as little time as you are comfortable with.
There is no remuneration for participating in this project
Confidentiality of data
All the information will be stored on the computer of the researcher, and will be password protected. No information that will identify you personally will be kept. All paper records will be shredded, and all electronic raw data files will be deleted at the end of the project using deletion software, so that the data cannot be recovered. At the Science Fair, all information will be presented anonymously. None of the participants will be identified.
Withdrawing from the project
You have the right to withdraw from the project at any time and for any reason. Contact the Adult Supervisor by telephone or email if you would like to do this.
This research project has been reviewed and approved by the Ethics committee of the Basingstoke Regional Science Fair.
A summary of the results of this research will be sent to you by email after the Science Fair is over.
Informed Consent Form
A study of the On-Line Video Game Community
I have received the Letter of Information, have had the nature of the study explained to me and I agree to participate. All questions have been answered to my satisfaction.
Name of Participant (please print): __________________________________
Signature of Participant: __________________________________________
Name of parent or guardian (please print) ____________________________
Signature of parent or guardian: ___________________________________
Name of Person Obtaining Consent (please print): _____________________
Signature of Person Obtaining Consent: _____________________________
The Informed Consent Forms contain confidential data, and so must be secured at the home of the Adult Supervisor, whose signature on the Human Participation Form confirms that Informed Consent has been obtained. All Informed Consent Forms must be shredded after the project is no longer needed for Science Fairs.
If the participant is under 18 years of age, then a parent or guardian must also give permission.