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Sick or Healthy?


Project title

What is the study about? The study investigates perceived health in faces. The whole experiment will last approximately 10 minutes. The study is being conducted as part of the researchers’ PhD project for the School of Psychology, University of St Andrews.

Do I have to take part? No. This information sheet has been written to help you decide if you would like to take part.   It is up to you and you alone whether or not to take part. If you do decide to take part you will be free to withdraw at any time without providing a reason.  

What will I be required to do? You will be shown pairs of images and asked to select the one that you think looks healthier. You will also be asked to complete a questionnaire that asks you certain demographic questions, such as your age and ethnicity as well as some health related questions. You may choose not to answer any of these questions.

Will my participation be anonymous and confidential? Only the researcher(s) and supervisor(s) will have access to the data which will be kept confidential. Your identity or IP address will not be revealed to anyone whatsoever, and all reference to you will be of a generic nature. IP addresses will be recorded initially, numbers will be assigned to each questionnaire and then the IP addresses will be destroyed. You should note that this experiment is not being run from a "secure" https-server of the kind typically used to handle credit card transactions. This means that there is a small possibility that responses could be viewed by unauthorized third parties. Your permission maybe sought in the Participant Consent form for the data you provide, which will be confidential, to be used for future scholarly purposes.

Storage and destruction of data collected. The data we collect will be accessible by the researchers and supervisor involved in this study only, unless explicit consent for wider access is given by means of the consent form. The data will be stored in a password-protected database in a confidential format. Scientific journals require data and materials to be kept for a minimum of 5 years after publication.  Data can be a valuable resource for future studies; therefore, we ask your consent to maintain it.  Again, we stress that all informationis kept confidential, and the analyses of data are done without knowledge of individual identities.

What will happen to the results of the research study? The results will be finalised by 2017 and written up as part of the researcher’s PhD thesis.

Reward Due to the anonymous nature of data collection, no reward for participation can be offered.

Are there any potential risks in taking part? No risks are expected to arise in course of the experiment.

Questions If you have any questions about this study, the results, or your involvement, please feel free to contact the researchers (see contact details below).

Consent and approval This research has been scrutinised and granted Ethical Approval through the University of St Andrews ethical approval process.

What should I do if I have concerns about this study? A full outline of the procedures governed by the University Teaching and Research Ethical Committee is available at:

Contact Details
Researchers: Audrey Henderson ( Supervisor: Prof. David Perrett (


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