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What is Educational Debriefing?

The educational debriefing helps the researcher meet the educational mandate required in order to use a participant pool in his or her study. In addition to providing a debriefing form, consider the following when you are interacting with students in a debriefing session (as provided by the Psychology Pool):

(1) Unless other circumstances disallow it, ideal debriefings are done verbally and interactively with participants (in addition to providing the standard written debriefing).
(2) Debriefings should always use non-technical language and provide participants with a clear sense of the main question and why we are bothering to try to figure out the answer.
(3) Debriefings might begin with open-ended questions to the participant to engage them in thinking about the exercises they just completed e.g., What do you think the study was about? Why do you think we asked you to run in place for 10 minutes? Do you think that the presence of the large spider led to your constant screaming?
(4) Participants can be presented with the hypothesis and/or study design and asked to generate and explain their own predictions about the eventual results, or about their own performance.
(5) For methodological circumstances in which the experimenter cannot be aware of the critical hypothesis, experimenters can discuss background topics and related research or other aspects of the research process (e.g., Why are study rooms so drab? What are the measures intending to assess? Why did we ask about body piercings?).
(6) Participants could be given the option to add their name to a list of people who will be sent a summary of the results at the end of the semester.

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