Psychology 001 Research Participation Requirement

As part of your exposure to general psychology, you are required to participate in 7 psychology
 studies (including a prescreening session, which will count as 1 of the 7) throughout the semester, with two exceptions: (1) If you object to taking part in psychology research; or (2) if you are under the age of 18. If you fall into either of those exceptional categories, instead of participating in psychology studies, you may instead write an 8-page paper on a topic to be determined in consultation with the instructor.

To help meet the course requirement for participation in 7 psychology studies, researchers will contact you via e-mail to let you know when you have been assigned to take part in their research. You are then obliged to sign up for the study on Sona Systems, in which you can choose a time slot that works for you. If you can't make any of the scheduled times, please contact the researcher to arrange an alternate time. You should also check the Sona site periodically for opportunities to sign up for research.

It is possible that you won't be called upon to participate in all 7 studies. If, for example, you are called upon to participate in only 6 studies throughout the semester and you show up for all 6, and you are ineligible to participate in a 7th study, you have fully met your course obligation. If you have participated in 7 studies and you are called upon to participate in a 8th study, you are under no course obligation to do so (though you are free to, if you so choose). If you have any questions or concerns about this requirement, please contact your course instructor.

The purpose of this research participation requirement is two-fold. First, it provides a source of participants for students and faculty in the psychology department who are conducting research. Second, it provides you with direct experience in psychological studies being conducted in the department. Because the experience is meant to be educational, the background and purpose of the study will be explained to you at the conclusion of the session.

Empirical research is an important part of psychology, and the department of psychology believes that your participation in studies being conducted in the department will give you an important insight into the research process. By being in psychological studies, you are engaging in an important intellectual task with the faculty and advanced students in the department. It is our hope that you will gain an appreciation that will help you to better evaluate other research that you read or hear about. We also hope that you might be inspired to get involved in a research project of your own.

All of the research projects have been approved by a review committee of the college, the Institutional Review Board (IRB). Every procedure must guarantee your safety and confidentiality. Your responses will not be permanently associated with any identifying information, and in no case will personal or identifying information be disclosed. Any concerns should be brought to the attention of the Research Ethics Committee of the College. If you have a strong aversion to participating in this program, you should contact the Department Chair, Professor Andrew Ward (  Professor Ward will provide an alternative writing assignment.  If you are presently under age 18, you should also contact the Department Chair, Professor Andrew Ward ( for special information concerning your requirement.

About Sona Systems

To create your account:
NOTE: If you are a Bryn Mawr or Haverford student, please contact Frank Durgin.

( to set up your Sona account.

If you are a first-time user for Sona Systems, you must create an account in the system by requesting a new account.

1. Log in to Sona Systems
2. You will see two options at the lower left corner of the Sona log-in screen:
"New participants? Request an account here" and "Lost your password? Click here to retrieve it!" You click the first option "New participants? Request an account here."

3. Then, follow the instructions that Sona Systems provides. You need to use your e-mail name to create your account (e.g., jsmith1), but please do not use your e-mail password (or any other of your favorite passwords, as the Sona site passwords are not particularly secure.) We recommend that you use the random number password that Sona Systems sends you by return via e-mail. You can always have the system send your password to you again if you forget it.

To sign up for a study:
1. When you receive an e-mail indicating that you are required to participate in a study, log on to Sona Systems
2. You will see 3 options:
 Study Sign-up; My Schedule & Credits; and My Profile.

3. Click the "browse a list of studies ..." under the Study Sign-Up.

4. Click the study you are required to participate and select a time slot that suits your schedule.

Rev 9.04.14