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Informed Consent Form Copy

Using the Q Sort Methodology for Instructional Purposes
Consent Cover Letter
January 26, 2016

Dear Participant:

I am a professor in the Department of Career and Information Studies at the University of Georgia. I invite you to participate in a research study entitled “Using the Q Sort Methodology for Instructional Purposes.” The purpose of this study is to explore a special sorting activity – called a Q sort – for instructional purposes.

Your instructor will be asking all class members to complete one or more sorting activities followed by participating in a follow-up class discussion as a routine part of the course instruction. I am requesting to use your responses to those sorting activities and your discussion contributions as data for this research. The exact number of sorting activities will depend on your instructor’s course design. Each sorting activity takes approximately 20 minutes and the follow-up discussion takes approximately 20 minutes as well. Each sorting activity will be done online and will include a variety of topics ranging from fun topics, such as music and entertainment, as well as serious topics covered in this course. People who agree to participate in the research will also be asked to complete four different surveys. Two of these surveys are administered after each Q sort activity you complete. The other two surveys are administered once each, one at the beginning of the study and the other at the end of the study. Each survey takes approximately 15 minutes to complete.

Your involvement in the study is voluntary, and you may choose not to participate or to stop at any time without penalty or loss of benefits to which you are otherwise entitled. If you decide to stop or withdraw from the study, the information/data collected from or about you up to the point of your withdrawal will be kept as part of the study and may continue to be analyzed. Your decision to participate or not will have no bearing on your grades or class standing. You must be 18 years of age or older to participate. All people who volunteer will be chosen to participate in the study.

All information collected in this study that can be identified as yours will remain confidential, unless required by law. No individually-identifiable information about you, or provided by you during the research, will be shared with others without your written permission. All research data will be kept on a private drive that only the principal researcher will have access to. Identifying information of participants will be removed from any reports that are seen by anyone other than the principal researcher. The results of the research study may be published, but your name or any identifying information will not be used. In fact, the published results will be presented in summary form only.
Your opinions are highly valued and I hope you will feel a sense of satisfaction in knowing you are contributing to an increased understanding of how to use an innovative sorting activity as a learning activity and as a survey instrument. The findings from this project may provide information on how to design innovative classroom and survey activities that are engaging and useful in understanding a course topic more fully. There are no known risks or discomforts associated with this research.

If you have any questions about this research project, please feel free to contact me via email at Questions or concerns about your rights as a research participant should be directed to The Chairperson, University of Georgia Institutional Review Board, 212 Tucker Hall, Athens, Georgia 30602; telephone (706) 542-3199; email address

Thank you for your consideration! Please print a copy of this letter for your records.

Lloyd P. Rieber, Ph.D.
Department of Career and Information Studies
Email: | Phone: 706-542-3986