Research project information sheet

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Project Information Sheet (HREC number S/17/1017)
Perceived knowledge, beliefs, attitudes, behaviours and barriers of Occupational Therapists regarding the use of psychological strategies with clients living with Parkinson’s disease

To take part in this research, you must be a registered Occupational Therapist over the age of 18, working in Australia, The United Kingdom, Canada or New Zealand.

Voluntary participation
Participation in the research will involve completing an online survey, which should take no more than 15 minutes.  Your involvement in this research project is voluntary and there are no consequences for choosing not to participate in the research.  You may withdraw from the research project at any time before the survey is completed, without penalty or the need to provide an explanation.

Details about the research project:
The progressive nature of Parkinson’s disease has a profound impact on an individual’s ability to carry out self-care and activities of daily living, and presents affected individuals with various bio-psychosocial challenges.  Currently, Occupational Therapy, generally in the form of physical therapy and environmental adaptation is used to assist those affected, in addition to traditional medical management.

Research suggests that psychological strategies can also assist with movement and psychosocial challenges that are commonly associated with Parkinson’s disease, however, limited research has actually asked OTs about their perceived knowledge, attitudes, beliefs, behaviours and barriers regarding the use of psychological strategies with clients living with Parkinson’s disease.

Participating in this research will enable you to provide insight into Occupational Therapists’ thoughts, feelings, and experiences regarding using psychological strategies in their practice with Parkinson’s clients. This information could help to identify where further training or allocation of resources may be required to better support practitioners such as yourself, subsequently improving the rehabilitation outcomes and quality of life of individuals living with Parkinson’s disease.

Confidentiality and use of data
The information you provide will be completely anonymous and only used to address the aims of this research project.  Only the primary researchers will have access to the information collected, and all data will be stored at the University of the Sunshine Coast for a period of 7 years after publication.

As data collected will be anonymous, it will not be possible to directly inform and provide feedback to participants of the research findings.  However, the results of the research will be communicated via an Honours thesis and a journal article.  If you would like to request a short summary of the key research findings, please send your contact details to Geoff Lovell or Ashleigh Coleman at the e-mail addresses below.

Disclosure of funding
Funding for this research has been provided by the University of the Sunshine Coast.

Involvement in the research
You are able to take your time to think about whether you wish to participate in this study.  If you require additional information before making a decision, please contact the researchers at the e-mail addresses given below. 

Informed consent
To keep your responses to this survey completely anonymous and confidential, your informed consent to take part in this study is indicated by your completion of the survey. You will also be asked to confirm your consent at the beginning of the survey.
The researchers and the University of the Sunshine Coast sincerely appreciate your involvement in this research project.

Concerns about conduct of research
If you have any complaints about the way this research project is being conducted you can raise them with the Principal Supervisor Dr Geoff Lovell (email or, if you prefer an independent person, contact the Chairperson of the Human Research Ethics Committee at the University of the Sunshine Coast: (c/- the Research Ethics Officer, Office of Research, University of the Sunshine Coast, Maroochydore DC 4558; telephone (07) 5459 4574; email

There are very minimal risks associated with participating in this research. There is a very slight chance that minimal psychological risk may be apparent, as the survey may provoke thought processes that may cause you to feel uncomfortable or anxious, or raise issues as to how you feel about your current practice behaviours. 

If at any point you feel uncomfortable or have concerns with the nature of the questions, or if partaking in this survey leaves you feeling emotionally distressed in anyway, we encourage you to seek help and support from organisations such as Beyond Blue in Australia call 1300 22 4636, in New Zealand contact Lifeline on 0800 543 354, in Canada contact the Canadian Mental Health Association on 613 745 7750, and in the UK contact Immediate help Samaritans on 08457 90 90 90. Additionally, you can contact the Principal Supervisor Dr Geoff Lovell.

Researcher’s details:
Principal Supervisor: Dr Geoff Lovell  - School of Social Sciences, University of the Sunshine Coast –

Principal researcher: Ashleigh Coleman, University of the Sunshine Coast –

Co-Supervisor: Christina Driver, University of the Sunshine Coast -

Co-Supervisor: Dr. John Parker – University of Gloucester -