How to do it?
When conducting experimental research, the following activities should be performed:
- Welcome the participant
- Obtain participant’s consent to participate in the experiment and permission to use the data
- Discuss anonymity/confidentiality issues
- Recap the purpose of the study
- Outline the procedure, providing an estimate of the time taken to finish the study
- Provide opportunity to ask questions
- Provide instructions detailing each task the participant will perform
- If the experiment includes a complex or unfamiliar task, a training phase should be included
- Be aware of possible difficulties or doubts during the participant’s performance in the tasks
- If a task takes too long to be completed, make sure to give some time for the participant to rest before starting a new task
- Once all the tasks in the experiment have been completed, consider conducting a postexperimental interview. This interview can provide information regarding the participants’ thinking and strategies used during the experiment, which can help explain their behaviour. Also, if the experiment contained a deception this is a good way of determining if the participants’ believed or suspected what was the true purpose of the study.
- Provide the debriefing form. If the experiment contained a deception, the true purpose of the study should be clearly explained and why it was necessary to use such a strategy.
- Reiterate confidentiality
- Give opportunity for questions
- Provide information about any follow-ups (if applicable)
- Offer thanks and farewells