A Research Project at the University of Newcastle

Why is the research being done?
The purpose of the research is to investigate the use, role and impact of DNA testing in exploring and understanding individual, national, and global histories and identities.
What would you be asked to do?
If you agree to participate, you will be asked to complete an online survey/questionnaire about your motivation, experiences and the impact of testing their DNA. The survey asks respondents to reflect on their experiences with DNA testing and to provide some general demographic information. The survey will online for 4-6 months depending on the response rate.
What choice do you have?
Participation in this research is entirely your choice.  Consent is implied by submission of the survey and the reading of the information provided. Whether or not you decide to participate, the decision will not disadvantage you in any way. If you do decide to participate, you may withdraw from the project at any time prior to submitting your completed survey. Please note that due to the anonymous nature of the survey, you will not be able to withdraw your response after it has been submitted.
How much time will it take?
The questionnaire/survey should take about 20 - 30 minutes to complete, depending on the length of your responses.
What are the risks and benefits of participating?
There are no anticipated risks associated with participating in this research. There are no risks or direct personal or professional benefits to participants. However, the findings may provide insights into the motivations, experiences, and the impact of DNA testing on individual, national, and global histories and identities. If the issues raised in this survey cause distress or discomfort, please seek professional advice and assistance. Free counselling services such as Lifeline Australia on 131114 and Beyond Blue on 1300224636.
How will your privacy be protected?
Data will be retained for at least 5 years on the University of Newcastle’s secure server, the online survey will be hosted via Survey monkey via a secure encrypted connection, hard copy surveys will be stored in a locked filing cabinet in one of the Chief Investigators’ offices, audio recordings will be stored on the University of Newcastle’s secure server, and data will be securely destroyed in line with UON policy provisions for research conducted by University staff.
Due to the anonymous nature of the survey/questionnaire the responses you provide will not be identifiable. For Survey Monkey’s Privacy Policy see: https://www.surveymonkey.com/mp/legal/privacy-policy/. Only the named researchers will perform the data analysis.
How will the information collected be used?
The collected data will contribute to the research of the named researchers and may be presented in academic publications, journals or conferences. Individual participants will not be named or identified in any reports arising from the project although individual anonymous responses may be quoted. Non-identifiable data may be also be shared with other parties to encourage scientific scrutiny and to contribute to further research and public knowledge, or as required by law. Links to a plain English report of findings will be posted on the Facebook groups and emailed to the Societies.
What do you need to do to participate?
Please read this Information Statement and be sure you understand its contents before you proceed to complete the survey.  If you would like further information please contact the principal researcher at debra.donnelly@newcastle.edu.au. This project has been approved by the University’s Human Research Ethics Committee, Approval No. H- 2019- 0060
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