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Interview Informed Consent Document


Clarkson University
Documentation of Informed Consent to Participate in Research

Project Title: A Learning, Resource, and Community Platform for Computational and Data-Centric Ecology Courses
Researcher(s):  Benjamin Galluzzo,  Jeffrey Xavier and Rebecca Zarch
Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval number: 23-15

Approval valid until: October 2, 2023

You have been asked to be a part of the research described here. Participation is voluntary.

Summary of the study: 

The evaluation of the Data4Ecology grant will seek to achieve five major objectives, described in greater detail below. The evaluation will seek to obtain formative and summative data about to determine project impact and possible areas for improvement:

The purpose of this project is to build an online learning and community platform, with complementary professional development, to support ecology faculty nationwide as they work to create more data-centric ecology courses. Across its three-year span, the project will achieve this goal via specific, targeted objectives: 

  1. Develop and deploy the website. 

  2. Curate, develop, and embed learning resources on

  3. Develop and deploy collaboration and community resources on

  4. Develop and run online and in-person professional development. 

  5. Disseminate project products at major research conferences and in peer-reviewed educational research journals. 

The purpose of these evaluation activities is to better understand how the Data4Ecology project is meeting the needs of educators and students in offering data-centric ecology lessons.

What to expect: 

This portion of the study will involve participating in an interview, which will take about 45 minutes to complete.  In it, you will be asked to answer a series of questions about your involvement in the project, your experience during the project-sponsored activities you participated in, and your opinions about the project’s progress. Additional information specific to this interview:

  • If you give us permission, we would like to record the session.  If you choose not to be recorded, we can still hold the interview, but our information about what you said will only be gleaned from the notes taken during the session.

  • You may choose to skip any question you wish.  Just let us know and we will move on to the next question.

  • You may end the interview at any time.

  • If you wish to say something that you would prefer not be recorded or written down, please let us know and we will stop the recording and taking of notes.  We will begin again when you tell us we can.

  • If you have any questions about this research, you may contact Jeffrey Xavier (; 413-256-6169).


Risks and discomforts to you if you take part in this study: 

There are  no foreseeable risks or discomforts to you for taking part in this study.

The benefits to you if you take part in this study: 

There are no direct benefits to you for participating in the study.  However, your answers may help us to learn more about the project’s work and help us improve it as we move into the future.

What will you receive for taking part in this study:

You will not be paid for your participation in this study.

What will happen to the information collected in this study: 

Your part in this study will be handled in a confidential manner. Only the researchers will know that you participated in this study. Any reports or publications based on this research will use only group data and will not identify you or any individual as being of this project.  Any reports or publications based on this research will use only group data and will not identify you or any individual as being of this project.  


The information collected will be kept confidential as much as is permitted by law.

What rights you have when you take part in this study:

Participation in this research is voluntary. Deciding not to take part, or to stop being a part of this research will result in no penalty, fine or loss of benefits that you otherwise have a right to. If you have questions about your rights as a research subject or if you wish to report any harm, injury, risk or other concern, please contact the Clarkson University Institutional Review Board (IRB) for human subjects research at or (315) 268-6475 

If you decide to stop participating in the survey prior to completing it, your partial data may be used as part of the study. If you would prefer that your response not be included, you may use the contact information above to specify this to the evaluation team.

Conflict of Interest: The researchers have no financial interest in performing this study. 

COVID-19: The study team has taken all CDC-suggested safety measures to minimize exposure to SARS-CoV-2 (the cause of COVID-19).

Informed Consent: Please sign below to show you have had the purpose of this research explained and you have been informed of what to expect and your rights. You should have all your questions answered to your satisfaction. Your signature shows that you agree to take part in this research. By signing below, you also attest that you are at least 18 years old. You will be given a copy of this consent form to keep for your records.

If you are recruiting subjects under 18 or who are not legally allowed to consent to research, please contact the IRB for alternate informed consent/assent documents.

Thank you for providing your consent.

A digital copy will be sent to you if you entered your email address above. 

If you have any questions or concerns with this form, please reach out to

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