Recruitment challenges

Ask here about academic and research issues, like designing studies, recruiting participants, choosing statistics, submitting for publication, etc.
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miriam
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Recruitment challenges

Post by miriam »

We are doing a survey in which parents rate their adolescent child on two questionnaires (I put a post about it here). We wanted to get at least a thousand participants, with good representation of the diversity of the UK population. We've struggled to get any groups to promote the research to their members, and our personal networks don't really represent the population well, so we have had very limited responses from parents of Black, Asian or ethnic minority heritage. We also need more participants in lower socio-economic groups. But mainly we just need a whole lot more participants. I've put it on here, and on LinkedIn and Twitter (the latter got about 80 responses when Jack Monroe the amazing food poverty campaigner and a few other higher profile accounts retweeted it). I've thought about asking schools to send out the link in an email newsletter, or parenting charities to ask their members, or posting on parenting forums. But there doesn't seem to be much response when we contact people. I feel like the research is really worthwhile, and there is an intrinsic reward - you can get a report about your child's needs - but this isn't as much motivation if that isn't a concern for parents at that time. Any ideas what else we can do?
Miriam

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noodle
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Re: Recruitment challenges

Post by noodle »

Hi Miriam

Just some quick thoughts that I hope are helpful. The language/wording of the advert strikes me as quite complex for the groups you are wanting to target. As an example, I wonder about people’s understanding of ‘psychological needs’ and even the word adolescent could be changed to teenager.

I did a science communication workshop a little while back and it really emphasised highlighting what potential participants would view as important about the research, rather than what we as researchers would view as important. Totally flipped my perspective on writing. Eg. The benefits section could start with “If you take part you will receive a report about your child’s needs. This can help you understand how to best support them and…”

I think parenting forums should be a good source for you but I wonder if there is something about the advert which isn’t connecting. I also wonder about Facebook groups (parenting and local community groups) for the population you’re looking for.
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miriam
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Re: Recruitment challenges

Post by miriam »

Good advice, thanks!
Miriam

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lakeland
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Re: Recruitment challenges

Post by lakeland »

I assume you've considered somewhere like Mumsnet?
Charlie
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Re: Recruitment challenges

Post by Charlie »

I agree with all the advice above, and also recommend contacting the McPin Foundation to see if they would advertise it.
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miriam
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Re: Recruitment challenges

Post by miriam »

I've been a bit ambivalent about Mumsnet, Lakeland, as they sometimes get hooked on some minor detail and get irrationally polarised or hostile (think of their stance on gender identity, for example) but I do think it could be a good place to post if a regular member posted it.

I've not heard of the McPin Foundation, but I'll look them up, Charlie. Thanks for the recommendation.
Miriam

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This forum is free to use. If you find the site useful, you are welcome to contribute the cost of a cup of coffee to our running costs.
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