Laboratories of Cognitive Neuroscience | Frequently Asked Questions

What happens after I join your database?

Joining the Participant Database does not obligate you to participate in our studies--it simply means that you are willing to have us contact you and describe a particular study when your child is eligible. Participant records are kept confidential among researchers here at the Labs of Cognitive Neuroscience--information will never be given to anyone who is not directly affiliated with the lab. Of course, you may withdraw from a study at any time, or have your family's contact information removed from our records for any reason. If you ever wish to have your family's information updated or removed, you can call (617) 355-0400 and we will update the database immediately.

How and when will my family be contacted for a particular study?

Study eligibility is generally based on ages of children at a given time. If a researcher is interested in your child's age group, you may be contacted by letter or e-mail, and then by phone to discuss the study and decide if you would like your child to participate. If you are interested in participating, we will arrange a time for you and your child to come into the lab.

What are study sessions like?

The study sessions typically last one hour, and most families find that participation is enjoyable and interesting--it's an opportunity to talk with a researcher and find out more about an aspect of your child's development. And, particularly for preschool-age children and older, we do our best to make fun games out of the tasks. You will be with your child at all times during the study. If a researcher contacts you about a specific study, he or she will explain in detail exactly what will take place during your child's session if you decide to participate.

Do you pay people to participate in your studies?

Most of our studies offer a small monetary compensation to compensate participants for travel expenses and time. Children who participate also get to pick out a small toy from our toy closet, as a way to show our appreciation to our littlest scientists. We also offer free parking, and free child care for any siblings who come along to the study session.