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Questions about participating:

When does the study take place?

We will arrange a time for your participation. We are available at your convenience and we appreciate your participation.

Where can I park if I participate in a study?

You will be able to park for free right outside of the Institute of Child Development. A research assistant will meet you at your car with a parking pass and direct you to the BSL lab.

Will I get paid?

The exact compensation will depend on the time commitment and nature of the given study. For most short-term studies, the compensation is a small gift for your child. More involved studies can include monetary compensation for your time. You will not need to pay for parking.

What is the research going to be used for?

We collect data and information to publish in academic journals on child development and to inform basic and applied (e.g., prevention, intervention, policy) developmental science. We are not conducting analyses of each individual child; rather, we are collecting information that is aggregated across children. Published articles will never contain identifying information (such as names or initials) about the children in our studies.

Can I hear about the results of the study?

Participants will be able to access our newsletter from our BSL Lab website. The newsletter will discuss new findings in child development as well as the results of studies conducted in our lab.

Will the data collected during the visit be confidential?

Yes. After your visit, your demographic information will be stored separately from all other data we collect. Videos recorded during the sessions will be put in a locked area that only trained experimenters have access to. When writing up results, no personal information will be used to link individuals to the study.

What do the physiological measures entail?

Depending on the study, we typically collect information about your child's (and sometimes your own) heart rate using wireless electrocardiogram (ECG) and/or impedance cardiography (ICG).  To do this, we place a set of electrode "stickers" on your child's upper chest and abdomen and connect the stickers to a small wireless device. It's painless. And, in most cases, folks typically forget that they're there. Information about heart rate activity allows us to measure physiological arousal emanating from the Autonomic Nervous System (ANS). 

We may also ask for saliva samples. With older children and adults, we'll ask you spit some saliva into a vial using a small straw. With younger children, we'll ask them to place a swab under their tongues for a minute or so. From the saliva we can measure a hormone called "cortisol" which is an indicator of physiological arousal emanating from the Hypothalamic Pituitary Adrenal (HPA) axis.

Will you be able to tell me anything about my child / my child's development?

No. The type of data we collect is for research purposes only and isn't suitable child-level diagnostic questions. 

Can I stay with my child during the course of the study?

Depending on the study, you may be actively engaging with your child; he/she could be sitting on your lap; you could be sitting quietly behind him/her; or we might ask you to briefly separate from him/her.  However, you will always have immediate access to your child, if you desire it. 

What if my child gets fussy?

We schedule enough time to allow for this, don't worry! Kids get fussy!  We schedule enough time for your child to get breaks and then we will resume whenever he/she is comfortable again. Participation is always voluntary. If you would like to come back another time or reschedule, we are happy to accommodate. Our goal is for your child to be comfortable and have as much fun as possible!

Can I bring other children with me?

Yes, we have a family playroom, and we will arrange for a research assistant to come and play with your other children during the study activities.