Researcher Sign-up

Human participation in research studies is managed using the SONA participation management software.  In order to obtain a SONA researcher account, first register using the Researcher sign-up form. After submitting the form, you will be invited for an induction meeting with the DR@W Coordinator who will inform you on relevant lab procedures and train you on the use of SONA.  Once you have had your induction meeting, you will be emailed your researcher account details / login information.

General guidelines for researchers using the DR@W research facilities

Researchers are required to attend an induction meeting with the DR@W Coordinator prior to using the human participation management system (SONA). Use of individual lab facilities may also necessitate training (contact details for each lab are provided on the Resources page). Student researchers below PhD level must be supervised in our labs, either directly by the supervisor or by a nominated delegate for each session.

Researcher accounts are restricted to academic faculty, research staff, PhD students and Masters in Research students. Continued access to a researcher account is contingent on adherence to the SONA Terms & Conditions document.  Researchers should familiarise themselves with this document when requesting a researcher account.

Ethical approval is mandatory for studies involving any form of human participation.  If an IRB approval code is issued, this should be entered into SONA when the project is made active. Details of the most appropriate approval route can be found on the Ethics page.

Booking lab space. 
Remember to ensure that lab space is available prior to booking any testing slots on SONA.  DR@W laboratories are located in the departments of Psychology, Economics and Warwick Business School.  The facilities available in each lab, their capacity and booking procedures vary between the host departments (see the Resources page for detailed guidance).

Piloting. Researchers are required to timetable adequate piloting and de-bugging prior to formal data collection.

Only after all the above steps have been completed, including a successful pilot you can start to recruit participants via SONA.

Financial Procedures

Procedures for arranging participant payments differ between departments.  Typically, cash payment is managed using a petty cash float and signed receipts.  Please liaise with the relevant Finance Contact to confirm the procedures for your department. The procedures for WBS and non-WBS departments are outlined in the ‘useful forms’ section, below.

Ethics Procedures

All studies involving human participation require ethics approval. The most appropriate route will depend both on the researcher and the nature of the proposed  research.  The two principal routes for academic faculty and research staff are the DR@W Umbrella and the Humanities and Social Sciences Research Ethics Committee (HSSREC). Separate arrangements, at departmental level, are in place for PhD students.  See the ethics page for details.

Undergraduate and MSc Research Supervision

The SONA System can be used to recruit participants for MSc research projects, provided these are paid studies. In such cases, the responsibility for recruitment lies with the supervisor. MSc students are not permitted researcher accounts on the system. The only exception are MSc (Psychological Research) students, who run multiple research studies during their 2 year course. If you are supervising a student project and you cannot attend an experimental session, you will need to make arrangements for supervision. Under no circumstances must a student be left running an experiment in the lab unattended.

Recruiting Research Assistants

If you require a research assistant for your study, we have a number of volunteers who are keen to help with research. Research assistants should have training in our lab procedures prior to assisting with any research experiments. Volunteers can help at any stage of the project and are keen to provide support where appropriate. If you would like to recruit a research assistant for your study, please fill out the following form and we will try and match one of our volunteers to your requirements: Research Assistant Recruitment Survey.

Useful Forms

WBS Finance Procedure
Non-WBS Finance Procedure
Cash Float
Cash Return
Cash Return Excel Sheet
Cash Return Sample

Study Materials:

Information Sheet and Consent Form Template
Debrief form Example