At this point with WeParticipated, we’ve seen hundreds of research studies published on the platform by Bachelors, Masters and PhD students from across the UK. One thing we’ve come to notice is the large number of studies published on WeParticipated without any sort of participant reward. To anyone who wants to listen, we often mention how researchers trying to find participants to take part in their research studies can reward participants without giving out cash.
We know that the idea of convincing people to participate in your research study can be a particularly stressful one. We were thinking about this from the viewpoint of WeParticipated. On WeParticipated, all participants receive “Impact Tokens” for taking part in research studies on the platform. They function as the platform’s internal currency. Participants can use them to gain access to short, illustrative and interesting research related content. We were thinking that this is itself another form of reward: it’s a Content Reward.
What we’ve found is that to some participants who take part in decision-making research, this is an extremely high value reward for their participation. This is because many participants don’t actually take part in research for money. Many participants are just genuinely interested in the research topic. Being provided with a unique piece of informative content on the topic by a relevant expert is a very desirable reward to many participants.
If you’re a student, you may be thinking: “how do I actually produce a Content Reward”. There are many ways, you could produce a static piece of informative and interesting content, such as a “how-to” or “did you know?” document. Whatever the case, you’re trying to create a short, informative and interesting piece of content on your research topic, that you can easily distribute to all the participants that take part in your research study.
We at WeParticipated believe that Content Rewards make a lot of sense and that they’re very valuable rewards that can be produced for free in most cases.
If you agree, spread the word!