JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY RESEARCH PARTICIPANT INFORMED CONSENT FORM
Study Title: Peer Influence on Vaping in High Schools
Application No.: HIRB00012211
Funded By: Johns Hopkins University Provost Undergraduate Research Award
Principal Investigator: Dr. Andrew Cherlin
Johns Hopkins University Department of Sociology
3400 N. Charles St. Baltimore, MD 21218. Mergenthaler Hall 556
You are being asked to join a research study. Participation in this study is voluntary. Even if you decide to join now, you can change your mind later.
1. Research Summary (Key Information)
The information in this section is intended to be an introduction to the study only. Complete details of the study are listed in the sections below. If you are considering participation in the study, the entire document should be discussed with you before you make your final decision. You can ask questions about the study now and at any time in the future.
This research project collects data by surveying high school seniors who are 18 years old or older. You are asked for your name, the names of up to seven of your closest friends who are also 18+ year old seniors in your high school, whether you vape or not, and basic demographic information, such as gender. Despite asking for names, your response remains anonymous even to the researchers by immediately converting names into identifiers. The survey includes 18 questions and should take about 3 minutes to complete. You will be assigned an anonymous identifier and passcode for entering a random drawing for a gift card. There are no costs associated with participation. However, there is a risk associated with providing information about vaping, an activity that is illegal in certain states, such as Virginia, for individuals younger than 21 years old. Your data is used to create a graph connecting seniors in your high school to study social networks and peer influence on vaping. A key element of the study is the use of software that allows the data to be collected without any identification of the participant. Names are converted to a string of letters and numbers and cannot be feasibly reversed to the original names even by the researchers since the researchers did not write the algorithm but rather use a standard program developed by the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA).
2. Why is this research being done?
This research is being done to gain insight into how to cut the transmission of vaping in social networks. Additionally, the response rate of a school-based survey will be assessed. This study aims to inform school-based vaping prevention strategies. High school seniors who are 18 years old or older may join.
3. What will happen if you join this study?
If you agree to be in this study, we will ask you to do the following:
Complete an 18-question, 3-minute survey that asks for:
- Your name, age, gender, grade level, school
- Names of up to seven of your closest friends who are 18+ year old seniors in your high school (3 required, 4 optional)
- True/False responses to whether you vape or not and whether or not you think your friends strongly influence your actions
- Ranking from 1-7 of four metrics from the Subjective Happiness Scale
You will be in this study for the duration of the 18-question survey, which should take about 3 minutes to complete. There are no follow-up procedures.
4. What are the risks or discomforts of the study?
You may get tired or bored when we are asking you questions or you are completing questionnaires. You do not have to answer any question you do not want to answer. This survey asks about vaping, an activity that is illegal in certain states for individuals younger than 21 years old. There is the risk that information about you may become known to people outside this study. The risks associated with participation in this study are no greater than those encountered in daily life.
5. Are there benefits to being in the study?
This study may benefit society if the results lead to a better understanding of vaping in social networks.
6. What are your options if you do not want to be in the study?
Your participation in this study is entirely voluntary. You choose whether to participate. If you decide not to participate, there are no penalties, and you will not lose any benefits to which you would otherwise be entitled.
7. Will it cost you anything to be in this study?
8. Will you be paid if you join this study?
If you satisfactorily complete the study, you will have a chance of receiving $20.00 to compensate you for your participation. Payments are made by Amazon eGift card at the end of the study by one random drawing for every 5 participants.
You will be given an anonymous identifier and passcode upon completing the survey. It is very important that you save both your identifier and your passcode in your notes and do not share them– if you are randomly selected as a winner, someone else with your unique code can redeem your prize. Once the survey is closed, your school administrator will notify you to return to this website and check for your identifier in our list of winners to see if you are selected in our random lottery. If selected, you may type in your passcode to redeem a code for a $20 Amazon eGift card.
9. Can you leave the study early?
If you wish to stop, please do not complete the survey. No data will be collected until you click submit.
10. How will the confidentiality of your data be protected?
Any study records that identify you will be kept confidential to the extent possible by law. The records from your participation may be reviewed by people responsible for making sure that research is done properly, including members of the Johns Hopkins University Homewood Institutional Review Board and officials from government agencies such as the National Institutes of Health and the Office for Human Research Protections. (All of these people are required to keep your identity confidential.) Otherwise, records that identify you will be available only to people working on the study, unless you give permission for other people to see the records. Despite collecting names, all data remains anonymous using a software called SHA512. It was designed by the National Security Agency and is one of seven algorithms approved as a U.S. Federal standard. An in-depth explanation of the algorithm requires significant technical background but can be found here. A simplified, pseudocode implementation can be found here. Emails are not linked to data, keeping responses anonymous, and are stored in a random order in a separate data sheet. Data is stored online and is password-protected. Data sheets using identifiers rather than participants’ names are downloaded to an external hard drive and stored in a locked room.
11. What other things should you know about this research study?
What is the Institutional Review Board (IRB) and how does it protect you?
This study has been reviewed by an Institutional Review Board (IRB), a group of people that reviews human research studies. The IRB can help you if you have questions about your rights as a research participant or if you have other questions, concerns or complaints about this research study. You may contact the IRB at 410-516-6580 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
What should you do if you have questions about the study?
You can ask questions about this research study now or at any time during the study. Call Daniel Habib, the student investigator, at 540-556-5662 or Dr. Andrew Cherlin, the principal investigator, at 410-516-2370. If you wish, you may contact the principal investigator by letter. The address is at the top of this consent form. If you cannot reach the principal investigator or wish to talk to someone else, call the IRB office at 410-516-5680.
If you have questions about your rights as a research participant or feel that you have not been treated fairly, please call the Homewood Institutional Review Board at Johns Hopkins University at 410-516-6580.
By clicking below and proceeding to the survey, you are indicating that you understand the information given to you in this form, you accept the provisions in the form, and you agree to join the study. You will not give up any legal rights by agreeing to the terms of this consent form.