I’m Zoe Poulton-Jones, a third year psychology student at the University of West London. For my dissertation project, I have chosen to examine attitudes towards affirmative action.
Affirmative action (according to UK government guidelines) is used to ensure workplace diversity. For instance if a man and a woman both apply for a job and they are both equally suitable for the position, the employer is obliged to hire the woman if females are underrepresented in that workplace. If the woman were not as qualified then she would not be hired - the more suitable applicant would be chosen. Hiring someone less qualified just because they are a minority would be illegal discrimination.
If you agree to take part in my study, you will be asked to read a passage about a hypothetical scenario that describes the creation and implementation of an affirmative action policy. You will then be asked to answer a number of questions about your attitudes towards the situation as well as a questionnaire about what you would do in the situation. You will be asked to respond to each question, either by indicating “yes” or “no” or by indicating your position on a rating scale from 1 (strongly disagree) to 7 (strongly agree). There are also some general demographic questions where you will be asked to indicate your age, gender and ethnicity.
Please read the following further information about the study before deciding whether or not to take part:
• Your participation in this study is voluntary.
• You may stop taking part in the study at any time and do not have to give a reason - if you wish to withdraw, simply ask me! If you withdraw, any information you have given will be destroyed and won’t be used by me or anyone else. In addition, if there are any individual questions you would prefer not to answer, please don’t hesitate to leave them blank as you go through the study
• You can also withdraw the data you provide for the study after you have taken part. You will be given a participant number today, and if you wish to withdraw your data, you can do so at any point up to a week today. To do so, just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your participant number and I will destroy your data
• All data you provide will be stored securely and on an anonymised form (i.e. by using a number rather than your name). The information you provide will be kept confidential. Data will be considered at a group level rather than at the level of the individual, and you will not be identifiable at any point during the analysis or presentation of the project findings.
• The information collected during this study will be used to produce my final year undergraduate dissertation. The people who might read this in an official capacity are my project supervisor, other members of the UWL psychology staff and external examiners.
• If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask me! You may also contact me afterwards with any questions at email@example.com
• I have received approval for this project from the university’s ethics committee.