Marist College Participant Pool
This page contains information about the system for research participation that students and faculty in the Marist College Psychology Department use.
Click on the link that applies to you:
INFORMATION FOR PARTICIPANTS (most likely students)
INFORMATION FOR RESEARCHERS (most likely faculty)
I WANT TO SCHEDULE ONE OF THE LAB ROOMS (DY206 main room, A, B, or C)
If you need to complete a research participation requirement for Introductory Psychology, please read all of the following carefully.
As of the fall 2013 semester, all Introductory Psychology students must complete one hour of research participation or an equivalent alternative assignment. An hour of research participation means that your time commitment, when you participate in a study, should be no more than one hour, not including travel time (studies are conducted on campus). All of the research projects that will be available to you are approved by the Marist College Institutional Review Board (IRB) and coordinated through the Psychology Department via the Sona system. The Sona system is online and can be accessed anywhere, although it is recommended that you use a browser no more than 2 years old when you log in. Information about how to access Sona is below. You should know that Sona refers to your hour of research participation as a “credit.” This kind of “credit” is NOT the same as an academic credit. (you get those from passing college courses; for example, PSYC 101L is a 3-credit course).
Why is there a research participation requirement?
The research participation requirement has a number of implications for our program. The participation requirement creates a “pool” of participants for investigators (faculty and advanced students) to draw from in order to conduct their research. This is important to further the process of active empirical investigation that characterizes the science of psychology. For participants, this is an opportunity to experience the research process in a hands-on way. It is our intention that this will provide all student participants with an appreciation of how the science of psychology is informed by direct data collection. Introductory Psychology students who go on to higher-level psychology coursework will also have this experience as a frame of reference for methodological and ethical issues that they will continue to encounter. Students wishing to prepare themselves for graduate-level study may go on to do independent projects later in the program, in which they would get to see both sides of this process.
Rights of research participants
First, participation in any study is voluntary, so you may elect to opt out of the research participation requirement. However, if you opt out of participating in a study, an alternative assignment must be completed (see “Alternative assignment” below).
Second, once you begin to participate in a study, you are free to leave at any time, and for any reason. There is no penalty to you for leaving, and you will receive credit equal to time spent.
Responsibilities of research participants
First, protect your account. You are responsible for all activity in your account, so keep track of what you do with your account and make a note of the procedures and penalties described here and on your course syllabus.
Second, be on time. Keep track of the date, time, location and name of the study—write it down, put it on your calendar—when you sign up. If you forget this information, you can retrieve it from the Sona system.
Third, take it seriously. When you choose to take part in research, you contribute data that we use to understand human behavior. We expect your honest effort in all research situations. Also, please do not discuss with anyone the aims and methods of any experiment until that work is complete.Finally, it is your responsibility to cancel any session for which you have signed up when you learn you will not be able to attend that session. More information about canceling can be found below.
How to sign up to participate in a study
We use an online scheduling system, Sona, to keep track of your research participation. In order to complete your hour of participation, you must log into this site, set up your account, and sign up through the system. It will also show you once you have completed your hour of research participation.
In order to log into the system, go to http://marist.sona-systems.com. Request an account by clicking on “New participant? Request an account here” (bottom left side of page). On the “Request an Account” page, enter your first and last names, your user ID (this is whatever comes before the @ of your Marist email address), and indicate which section of Intro Psych you are in (if you don’t know, check your course syllabus or degree progress report).
Important: Once you log in, make sure your account is configured to email you at the address you check most often. The default is for the system to contact you (with confirmation and reminder information that you will need) at your Marist email address. If there is another address that you use more often, change your contact information under “My Profile > provide an alternate email address.”
To see the list of available studies, go to “Study Sign-Up.” Studies with timeslots currently displayed will be listed here. As you are looking at studies, make a note of the eligibility information. This list will be updated throughout the semester with new times and new studies. It is a good idea to check the list periodically. DO NOT LEAVE PARTICIPATION UNTIL THE LAST MINUTE. Your research requirement must be fulfilled by 5 PM on Friday of week 15. No exceptions will be permitted.
Once you sign up for a study, an email confirmation will be sent to you. If you do not receive an email confirmation, go back into the system to make sure that your appointment actually registered. You can see details about your appointment under “My Schedule/Credits.”
After you have participated
When you have completed your required hour of participation, your research participation “credit” will be visible under “My Schedule & Credits” on the Sona website.
Expect to receive credit within 24 hours of having completed your participation. If 24 hours have passed and you did not receive credit, contact the researcher directly and explain the situation.
If you are late to your appointment, the researcher is under no obligation to have you participate in the study. Late arrival causes delays for all remaining appointments.Canceling or missing an appointment
You can cancel an appointment up to 12 hours prior to the appointment. You do not need to provide an explanation. In Sona, go to “My Schedule & Credits” to cancel your appointment.
If you can’t make an appointment, YOU MUST CANCEL THROUGH THE SONA SYSTEM AT LEAST 12 HOURS BEFORE YOUR SCHEDULED TIME OF PARTICIPATION.
Students who fail to appear for a scheduled appointment will receive a “no-show.” After 2 “no-shows,” students will be denied access to the participant pool and MUST complete the alternative assignment to fulfill their course requirement.
What if I show up and no one is there?
If you are at the study location on the right day and time, wait 15 minutes. If nobody shows up, inform the researcher, at the e-mail address given on the website, of the date, time, location, and name of the study. If it was your mistake, you will not receive credit. If it was the researcher’s mistake, you will receive one credit.
What if all the study sessions are taken?
Not all projects begin collecting data at the beginning of the semester. You should check periodically to see updated study information. However, don't put off your participation until the very end of the semester! If you wait until the last minute, there will probably NOT be enough opportunities to go around, and you will not be able to fulfill your requirement. IT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO FULFILL YOUR RESEARCH PARTICIPATION REQUIREMENT BY 5 P.M. FRIDAY OF WEEK 15.
Follow-up, questions, concerns or complaints about studies
If you are curious about how a study turns out or have questions about a study, contact the researchers or Principal Investigators (PIs) of the study. This information is on Sona and on the consent form you received when you participated.
Concerns or complaints about study procedures or consequences should be directed to the PIs of the studies or the IRB.
Students who do not wish to participate in research must complete the following alternative assignment:
- Select an empirical article (an article that presents research that the authors have done; it will include method and results sections) from one of the journals listed on pages 2-3 of this document.
- To do this, you will first have to check to see if we subscribe to the journal (do that here).
- Once you have found the journal, check out a recent issue to see the table of contents.
- Choose an empirical article from a recent issue.
- Print out and read your article.
- For your assignment, write a two-page double-spaced reflection on the study, including:
- A summary of the main points of the article (What was the authors' motivation? What did they do? What did they find? What did they think their findings meant?)
- A reflection of the practical purpose of the study and the value to society of the findings
Your paper must be the product of your own original thinking and must be written completely in your own words. If the article you choose contains more than one study you need only write about one of the studies, but indicate which one.
Your paper and a copy of the full-text journal article must be turned in to both your Introductory Psychology professor and the pool administrator.
Alternative assignments are due at 5 P.M. on the Friday of week 15, no exceptions.
Questions about the participant pool should be sent to the pool administrator (email@example.com).
If you are faculty member in the Psychology Department or an advanced psychology student who is doing research for academic credit for an honors project, and you would like to access the participant pool, please read all of the following carefully.
We are using the Sona experiment management software. In this system, people who conduct research are either researchers (usually students) or principal investigators (PIs; faculty members). Both researchers and PIs can create and edit studies through Sona.
Access to the participant pool
Access to the participant pool is limited to Marist College Psychology Department faculty, honors students doing supervised senior projects, and students doing for-credit supervised research (PSYC485).
If you wish to access the Marist College Participant Pool, your work must first be approved by the Marist College Institutional Review Board (IRB). In your IRB application, you should indicate the information that prospective participants will see when they view your study on the Sona system. A template you can fill out to provide the relevant information to the IRB is here.
Following IRB approval, researchers or PIs who wish to access the pool should contact the pool administrator to request an account, at firstname.lastname@example.org. In your request email, you MUST include your first and last name and your Marist email address. When your account is approved, your Marist email address will be emailed with your login information, including a temporary password. The first time you login to Sona with this information, update your information (change your initial password and specify a different email address if there's one you use more often).
Adding a study
Once you are in the system, you may add your study by going to “Add New Study” in the bar at the top of the screen and following the instructions. We are currently only allowing standard (on-ground, in-person, one-part) studies. Your study will not be approved immediately; the administrator reviews all studies before issuing approval. Allow 48 hours for study approval.
Adding timeslots and specifying location information
Once your study is approved, it will be marked with a green check in the menu under “My Studies.” At this point you may add timeslots. When you add timeslots, you must specify the location of the study from the drop-down menu. In order to see which lab rooms are available during the times you desire, check the schedule (“View Schedule” link below the drop-down menu). If you are a student, keep in mind that the doors to the lab rooms are kept locked, so make sure you make arrangements in advance to access the rooms during the times you request.
It is the researcher’s responsibility to assign credit to participants within the 24 hours following participation.
Questions about the participant pool should be sent to the pool administrator (email@example.com).
This information is for psychology faculty members or others who would like to schedule the DY206 main room, DY206A, DY206B, or DY206C for purposes other than regularly-scheduled classes or research projects conducted through Sona. That is, if you are using the rooms for pool-related research conducted through Sona, you schedule the rooms through Sona (See INFORMATION FOR RESEARCHERS above.)
Please email the participant pool administrator (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your request to schedule a room. Indicate the date, time, and duration of use, and the room you'd like to use. Allow 48 hours for a reply.