My name is Robb Lindgren and I am the lead investigator for a project being conducted by researcher from the Department of Curriculum & Instruction at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) and the Concord Consortium (CC). My co-investigators on this project are Dr. David Brown (UIUC) and Mr. Nathan Kimball (CC). The financial sponsor of this research is the National Science Foundation. We would like to include your child in a research project on how students use their bodies (e.g., hand gestures) when reasoning about science problems. We will be looking at how body movement helps students understand difficult science concepts and using this information to design better educational activities and technologies that utilize these movements. This research involves individual interviews with students where they will work on science problems. Your child may also be asked to use computer simulation technologies that use motion-based controllers. These controls are similar to the kinds of controllers found in video games such as the Wiimote or Kinect. Information about your child’s movement as they use these controllers will be recorded onto a computer.
In the interview sessions, you child will be given science problems to work on that will be similar to their regular science curriculum; we will videotape and use these interviews for research analysis and dissemination. The researcher will ask the student to “talk aloud” as they try to solve the problem, and they will ask them follow-up questions about their thinking process. Some of these questions will be challenging, and sometimes students experience anxiety when talking about their understanding of difficult problems. Researchers will remind your child that these problems are supposed to be difficult and emphasize that they are not expected to know all the answers. The researcher will end the session if it becomes too stressful.
Your child’s participation in this project is completely voluntary. In addition to your permission, your child will also be asked if he or she would like to take part in this project. Only those children who have parental permission and who want to participate will do so, and any child may stop taking part at any time. You are free to withdraw your permission for your child’s participation at any time and for any reason without penalty. These decisions will have no effect on your future relationship with the school. Your decision as to whether or not to allow your child to participate will not affect your child’s science grade. Data collected during this research project will be secured in our lab and will not become a part of your child’s school record.
In general, study-related information will be kept confidential, and we will not tell anyone any information about you. When this research is discussed or published, no one will know that you were in the study. Any sharing or publication of the research results will not identify any of the participants by name. However, there may be times when laws1 and university rules might require us to tell certain people about you. For example, your records from this research may be seen or copied by the following people or groups:
- Representaives of the university committee and office that reviews and approves research studies, the Institutional Review Board (IRB) and Office for Protection of Research Subjects.
- Other representatives of the state and university responsible for ethical, regulatory, or financial oversight of research.
- Federal government regulatory agencies such as the Office of Human Research Protections in the Department of Health and Human Services.
If you have any questions about this project, please contact using the information below. If you have any questions about your child’s rights as a participant in this study or any concerns or complaints, please contact the University of Illinois Institutional Review Board at 217-333-2670 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If your child chooses to participate, he or she will receive $10 for their participation in this study. If your child starts the study and decides not to continue for any reason, he or she will still receive the gift certificate.
In the space at the bottom of this letter, please indicate whether you do or do not want your child to participate in this research. Please also indicate at the bottom of this form if you give permission for your child to be video recorded and for what purpose these recordings can be used.
We look forward to working with your child. We think that our research will be enjoyable for the children who participate and will help them learn about important concepts in science.
Please keep a copy of this letter for your records.
 For example, if you disclose actual or suspected abuse, neglect, or exploitation of a child or a disabled or elderly adult, the researcher or members of the study staff will report the information to Child Protective Services, Adult Protective Services, and/or a law enforcement agency.