Instructions for Paid Participants

Participating in the Psychology Paid Research System

To view this information in pdf form, please refer to this Instructions for Paid Participants document.

Below are instructions about participating in the Psychology Department’s Paid Research System. Please read the information carefully. If you have questions, consult the FAQ or contact the Subject Pool Coordinator.


Different studies have different pay rates, which are described in the study descriptions. Some studies may pay a fixed amount while others pay an hourly rate. For some multi-session studies, there may also be a bonus for completing all sessions.

Registration & Pretest

Registering for the Psychology Paid Research System consists of 2 steps: (1) Create an account in the online Paid Research System, and (2) Complete the pretest.

  1. Go to the website This system does not use the same passwords you use for other university services, so you will create an account and password just for the Paid Research System. On the screen, click New participant, request an account here. Enter your name and a user ID. If you are a student or employee at the University, use your netID as your user ID, since every netID is uniquely associated with one person. A password will be emailed to your promptly

  2. Using your user ID and the password that is emailed to you, go to and log in. You will be asked to take a pretest, which includes a variety of background questions. Please answer all questions honestly. All responses will be kept confidential. Only the Subject Pool Coordinator has access to this data. If you have already registered separately in the Course Credit Participant Pool and completed the pre-test questionnaire for that, you will still have to register and complete the pretest for the Paid Research System.

Please contact the Subject Pool Coordinator if you have problems registering. You will not be able to sign up for any of the studies in the system until you register and complete the pretest.

General Guidelines for Studies

Arrive on time for each study. If you are late, you may not be able to participate and you will be marked as an Unexcused No-Show. If the researcher is not in the room when you arrive, double check your appointment date/time/location first. If it has been more than 15 minutes past the scheduled start time, then contact both the researcher in charge of the study and the Subject Pool Coordinator.

You do not need to bring any items with you, unless specifically directed. Upon arrival, turn off cell phones, pagers, ipods, or anything that may be distracting. If you try to use any of these during a study, you will be asked to leave.

Please follow instructions, be respectful, take participation seriously, and try to give quality responses. If you are disruptive, purposely provide inaccurate or inappropriate responses, or act so that the researcher believes that your data will be unusable, you will be asked to leave.

Special Types of Studies

Some studies have requirements that you must meet in order to take part in them. Pay close attentions to a study’s requirements and do not sign up for it if you do not meet them. If you sign up for a multi-session study, you must attend all sessions or cancel your participation in the entire study. However, you may receive prorated payment for partial completion of a multi-session study. On-line studies require the same sign-up procedure as other studies. If you do not complete the study, you will be marked as an Unexcused No-Show.

Signing up for Studies

Once you have taken the pretest in the Paid Research System, you can sign up for studies. Do not panic if no studies are posted for the first couple of weeks of the semester. Keep checking the website. New studies will be added regularly. You may not always be eligible for new studies, depending on your responses on the pretest and which other studies you have already done.

To sign up for studies, log in to the online Paid Research System and click the Study Sign-Up box. This will take you to a list of the studies that you are eligible to participate in. This page shows the studies that are available on the particular day you’re signing in on. You can select a different date by using the drop-down menu at the top of the page. For each study you can see available timeslots, the length and location of the study, and a brief description of the study. Please note that some studies are not held in the Psychology Building, so pay attention to the study’s location. You will receive a reminder email the night before the study. However, you are responsible for showing up even if you do not get the email.

Canceling Studies

If it is more than 24 hours before the appointment, then you can cancel via the Paid Research System website. Log in and click My Schedule/Credits. This screen shows studies that you are signed up for. If an appointment is more than 24 hours away, there will be a Cancel button next to it. Once you click Cancel, you will need to confirm that you want to cancel the appointment. Print a copy of this page as a record of your cancellation.

If it is less than 24 hours before the appointment, or if you miss an appointment, you need to email both the researcher in charge of the study and the Subject Pool Coordinator ASAP. Please include justification for the cancellation/absence and any supporting documentation. This information will be reviewed and in certain cases (emergency, documented illness, etc), the No-Show may be excused. Typically, if you cancel less than 24 hours in advance or miss an appointment, it will be considered an Unexcused No-Show.

Sometimes, a researcher must cancel a study. In these cases, it will be marked as an Excused No-Show for you in the Paid Research System.


A No-Show includes any situation in which you do not complete a study. There are two types of No-Shows: Excused and Unexcused. The only way to know what kind of No-Show a situation is (and whether it should be excused or unexcused), is by what the researcher writes in a "Comments" box in the Paid Research System.

  1. Excused No-Shows: Includes situations in which the researcher cancels a session, or a participant chooses to or is asked to leave, or a participant has a valid and documented reason for missing a study or arriving late to a study. Excused No-Shows will not count towards your unexcused absences, so will not influence whether your account gets locked (see points 2 and 3 below).

  2. Unexcused No-Shows: Includes situations in which you do not have a valid and documented excuse for missing a study, arriving late to a study, or not completing an online study once you have begun it. If you receive two Unexcused No-Shows, your account will be locked and you will not be able to sign up for any further studies in the Paid Research System.

  3. Locked Accounts: Your account will be locked if you receive two Unexcused No-Shows. While your account is locked, you will be unable to sign up for studies, although you can still take part in any studies that you have already signed up for. There are two ways to get an account unlocked.

    • First, provide justification for one of the Unexcused No-Shows that caused your account to be locked. Justification can include a note from the emergency dean, McKinley, or authorized professional.
    • If you do not have documentation, you can choose option 2, in which you complete an online ethics training program at You need to submit the completion certificate to the Subject Pool Coordinator to show that you have successfully finished the ethics training before your account will be unlocked.
    • Send all documentation via email. Without documentation to excuse the No-Show or confirm your completion of the ethics training program, your account will remain locked. Contact the Subject Pool Coordinator for more information.
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