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Psych department looking for subjects

By: Emily Reynolds

 

Have you ever noticed the colorful papers that litter every table in the dining commons? They’re advertisements requesting students to e-mail or call the psychology department to provide them with subjects to collect data from. On the bulletin boards in each building, there are ads for eye-tracking testing to study how people read material.  Online, the kinesiology department has posted bulletins to look for people to participate in a diabetes experiment. Even in the advertisements of newspapers like The Daily Collegian, there are requests for students to participate in studies and experiments.

 

College professors all over the country are doing research on their own campuses. They’re hoping to make better medicine, figure out how the body works, how languages develop and much more. Students do a lot of research as well, especially graduate students or seniors working on their theses.

 

Both professors and students alike are performing experiments that require people, and they advertise to you. A lot of them even include a monetary compensation.

 

Some that don’t include compensation or a small amount are non-invasive and take very little time, like eye-tracking experiments in Tobin. These usually take about 30 minutes and simply require the subject to read and answer questions. Other experiments include larger compensation, but those can include taking blood or biopsies, and they’re usually done over an extended period of time. 

 

However, the studies aren’t just for college students. Many have larger age ranges from 18-65 years old, and college students happen to fall into the age range.

 

So, the next time you’re sitting at the dining commons or waiting for a friend next to a bulletin board, take a look. There might be some ads for help needed in a study, and it might be something really interesting.

 

Emily Reynolds can be reached at ereynold@student.umass.edu.

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