Our names are Donna Schuman, PhD, LCSW, and Xiangli Gu, PhD. We are asking you to participate in a UT Arlington research study titled, “Exploring Virtual Reality Adventure Training Exergaming (V-RATE) on Veterans' Health Outcomes.” This research study is about the effects of participation in virtual reality adventure games on physical and psychological health. This consent is for eligibility screening only. You can choose to participate in this research study if you are a veteran between the ages of 18 and 65 and can come to the university for study visits. You cannot participate if you have difficulty walking or balancing or have a condition that could be worsened by physical activity or virtual reality (such as a head injury, orthopedic injury, seizures, heart surgery or disease, or pregnancy).
A reason why you might want to participate in this study is that you may derive some physical and psychological health benefits. You may not want to participate if you are unable to commit to coming to the university 1-2 times per week for six weeks. Your decision about whether to participate is entirely up to you. If you decide not to be in the study, there won’t be any punishment or penalty; whatever your choice, there will be no impact on any benefits or services that you would normally receive. Even if you choose to begin the study, you can also change your mind and quit at any time without any consequences.
If you decide to participate in this research study, the list of activities we will ask you to complete for the research are: (1) eligibility screening, (2) 3 assessment sessions, scheduled at the start of the study, and at 6- and 10-week time points after the study begins. Assessment sessions will include online psychological and cognitive self-report surveys, and physical health measurements (e.g., height, weight) that will be taken in the Movement and Physical Activity Epidemiology Lab (MPAE) and in the SEIR building on UTA’s campus. If you are assigned to the intervention group, we will ask that you also complete 6-12 virtual reality training sessions scheduled 1-2 times per week over a six-week period. It should take about five minutes to complete the online screening, 60-90 minutes each to complete the assessments, and 30-40 minutes for each VR training session. Although you may not personally experience any physical or psychological health benefits from participating, you may take satisfaction from knowing by helping the researchers learn more about approaches to improve health in veterans.
The study activities are not expected to pose any additional risks beyond those that you would normally experience in your regular everyday life or during routine medical/psychological visits. However, some of the questions that we will ask may be about sensitive or uncomfortable topics and because you will be performing physical exercises, there is always a risk of physical injury or muscle soreness, just as with any kind of exercise.
Due to the multiple visits and assessments during the program, as appreciation, we will offer an Amazon electronic gift card as compensation.
Control Group: for each of the three completed assessment visits (i.e., pre and post-tests, and 1-month follow-up), you will receive $20, for a max total of $60.
Intervention Group: for each of the 3 completed assessment visits (i.e., pre and post-tests, and 1-month follow-up), you will receive $20. In addition, for each of the 1-2 VR visits completed during the 6 weeks (6-12 visits total) you will receive $20, for a max total of $240. The Amazon electronic gift card will be sent to the participants’ email 1-2 weeks after the week in which the participant completed the assessment or VR training visits.
Compensation will be emailed to you 1-2 weeks after your participation. There are no alternative options to this research project. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) considers all payments made to research subjects to be taxable income; this may require additional information to be collected from you for tax purposes, such as your social security number. For payments less than $600 in a year, you will be responsible for reporting this information to the IRS.
The research team is committed to protecting your rights and privacy as a research subject. We may publish or present the results, but your name will not be used. While absolute confidentiality cannot be guaranteed, the research team will make every effort to protect the confidentiality of your records as described here and to the extent permitted by law. If you have questions about the study, you can contact us at v_Rate@uta.edu. For questions about your rights or to report complaints, contact the UTA Research Office at 817-272-3723 or email@example.com.
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