All participants must be willing to participate and have the ability to give consent. All potential participants have the right to refuse participation and withdraw their consent without the need for an explanation. You must respect their decision.
This guide assumes that you are getting consent from participants over 19 years old who are capable of making their own decisions. If you are looking to get consent from participants that do not fit with this description, please review the information on complex research to see if formal approvals are needed or extra assistance is required.
Under development and review
The purpose of a consent form is for both participants and researchers of the session to understand
- Who is collecting the data
- The purpose of the study (Why you are collecting the data)
- Any recordings that will happen during the session and how information will be handled
- What type of information will be recorded
- How the information is going to be used
- Who to contact if there are any questions
A consent form also creates a record that the participant consented to be part of the research.
Participant’s must be given the option to receive a copy of the dated and signed consent form.
A consent form must state that you will
- Only share information with the people working on this project. The information expressed in the session should only be shared with the team working on this project. If you wish to share information outside of people working on the project, you must inform the participant and they must consent to that request before you can share anything.
- De-identify your notes so that the participant’s personal information is not associated with the experiences and feedback provided in the study. In simple terms, if strangers read through the notes, they should not be able to identify who the participant was.
- Record sessions using screen capture and audio options only. Design research is limited to participants consenting only to screen capture and audio options. Photos of people’s faces or likeness is not allowed.
- Not intentionally ask for personal information if it is not necessary. The consent form must specify that you will not be intentionally asking for personal information, but acknowledges that personal information (such as stories and experiences) may come out due to the nature of the study.
- Store data on an encrypted government device. Any data collected should be stored in password-protected and/or encrypted government device.
The form should include:
- The participant’s full name
- Participant signature and date
- Researcher signature and date
For remote design research, you can use an online consent form.
In addition to the information above, you should capture the participant’s acknowledgment of consent through a checkbox or some other action.
If you are using an online consent form, you must be able to save a record of the completed form.