PS4 -- Participating in Mindfulness: The Effectiveness of Several Study Recruitment Methods

Alissa Mertel, University of South Carolina Upstate

Description

One persisting challenge encountered in mindfulness research is determining the most effective form of recruitment that also encourages consistent participation. A review of previous literature has identified recruitment techniques that include advertising in the local newspaper, distributing flyers at university counseling centers, offering a specific college class that structures mindfulness practices as its primary curriculum for research, or as a required assignment within designated college courses. Various techniques that are used to promote consistent participation include academic course credit, exam bonus points, cash incentives, and drawings for monetary and nonmonetary items. The purpose of this paper is to examine the effectiveness of one methodology, including recruitment and data collection, that could provide consistent participation in mindfulness research. Our study included student participants [N = 200; Age M(SD) = 20.37(4.71); 83.5% female, 16% male, .5% other genders; 52% White, 44% Black, 17% other races] that were enrolled in a psychology course at a public university in the Southeast United States who voluntarily completed self-report electronic surveys through the psychology department’s software platform, SONA. Of the 200 students that completed the initial surveys, 30 students expressed interest in participating in the 4-week mindfulness study, with 13 of those students going on to participate. Those 13 participants engaged in their mindfulness activity an average of 7.23 times or 26% of the 4-weeks with the frequency of participation per student ranging between 1 and 21. As compensation, the students received one entry into an end-of-study gift card drawing for each day they completed daily the mindfulness practice. In our experience, the students were eager to complete the pre-study survey for course credit but much less interested in participating in the 4-week study, and inconsistent at participating in daily mindfulness practices. We expect participation will occur more frequently and consistently when mindfulness research studies are embedded into college courses as an assignment and have a stronger participation incentive. To benefit and advance scientific research on mindfulness, further investigation is necessary to determine effective recruitment and data collection techniques that can encourage consistent participation.

 
Apr 8th, 10:30 AM Apr 8th, 12:15 PM

PS4 -- Participating in Mindfulness: The Effectiveness of Several Study Recruitment Methods

URC Greatroom

One persisting challenge encountered in mindfulness research is determining the most effective form of recruitment that also encourages consistent participation. A review of previous literature has identified recruitment techniques that include advertising in the local newspaper, distributing flyers at university counseling centers, offering a specific college class that structures mindfulness practices as its primary curriculum for research, or as a required assignment within designated college courses. Various techniques that are used to promote consistent participation include academic course credit, exam bonus points, cash incentives, and drawings for monetary and nonmonetary items. The purpose of this paper is to examine the effectiveness of one methodology, including recruitment and data collection, that could provide consistent participation in mindfulness research. Our study included student participants [N = 200; Age M(SD) = 20.37(4.71); 83.5% female, 16% male, .5% other genders; 52% White, 44% Black, 17% other races] that were enrolled in a psychology course at a public university in the Southeast United States who voluntarily completed self-report electronic surveys through the psychology department’s software platform, SONA. Of the 200 students that completed the initial surveys, 30 students expressed interest in participating in the 4-week mindfulness study, with 13 of those students going on to participate. Those 13 participants engaged in their mindfulness activity an average of 7.23 times or 26% of the 4-weeks with the frequency of participation per student ranging between 1 and 21. As compensation, the students received one entry into an end-of-study gift card drawing for each day they completed daily the mindfulness practice. In our experience, the students were eager to complete the pre-study survey for course credit but much less interested in participating in the 4-week study, and inconsistent at participating in daily mindfulness practices. We expect participation will occur more frequently and consistently when mindfulness research studies are embedded into college courses as an assignment and have a stronger participation incentive. To benefit and advance scientific research on mindfulness, further investigation is necessary to determine effective recruitment and data collection techniques that can encourage consistent participation.