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Glossary of Terms

Assent: Agreement from an individual not able to provide free and informed consent to take part in research.

Data Collection Process: Any process used to obtain information from or about Respondents. It includes, but is not limited to, interviews, questionnaires, discussion guides and stimulus materials.

Enduring Consent: This is where there is no time limit on consent given. Securing enduring consent may be essential in longitudinal studies. It may also be important for data that is placed on the UK Data Archive. Principles of preserving confidentiality apply.

Informed Consent: Informed consent entails giving sufficient information about the research and ensuring that there is no explicit or implicit coercion so that prospective participants can make an informed and free decision on their possible involvement.

Personal Data: Under the Data Protection Act 1998 ‘personal data’ is defined as data which relates to a living individual who can be identified a) from those data or, b) from those data and other information which is in the possession of, or is likely to come into the possession of, the data controller, and includes any expression of opinion about the individual and any indication of the intentions of the data controller or any other person in respect of the individual.

Research: Any form of disciplined inquiry that aims to contribute to a body of knowledge or theory.

Research Ethics: Research Ethics refers to the moral principles guiding research, from its inception through to completion and publication of results and beyond – for example, the curation of data and physical samples after the research has been published.

Responsible Adult: An individual who has personal accountability for the wellbeing of a child, for example a parent, guardian, teacher, nanny or grandparent

Sensitive Personal Data: Under the DPA 1998 this means personal data consisting of information as to (a) the racial or ethnic origin of the data subject, (b) his/her political opinions, (c) his/her religious beliefs or other beliefs of a similar nature, (d) whether he/she is a member of a trade union (within the meaning of the [1992 c. 52.] Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992), (e) his/her physical or mental health or condition, (f) his/her sexual life, (g) the commission or alleged commission by him/her of any offence, or (h) any proceedings for any offence committed or alleged to have been committed by him/her, the disposal of such proceedings or the sentence of any court in such proceedings.

Valid Consent: For consent to be ‘valid’ the participant must be capable of understanding all the potential risks involved. Where this may be in doubt, the Mental Capacity Act 2005 may apply.