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Current research opportunities

This is a list of opportunities for getting involved in research, which is updated regularly. The opportunities are sorted into involvement and participation. Due to the current situation, most or all of the opportunities listed here are related to Covid-19 as this is what most new research studies are focusing on. Although it is always McPin’s preference to prioritise the promotion of involvement over participation opportunities, currently most Covid-19 studies are participation opportunities. We hope that this will change.


Involvement opportunities

**Trigger warning: Suicide and suicidality**

Efficacy of suicide interventions

Please note: this is an opportunity to provide input on a funding proposal. This means that this project is not yet funded and therefore there is not currently funding in place to pay individuals to be involved. The payment indicated below refers to the amount that people will be paid if the funding is obtained.

This research is looking at the relative benefits and harms of different interventions for people experiencing suicidal thoughts. The researchers on this project have found that there has not yet been a comprehensive review of how well different interventions work for people with suicidal thoughts or behaviours. We need a review like this to understand more about which interventions will work for different people. They will look at what the research has said about the relative benefits and harms for different age groups.

The researchers will do this by searching for all of the research that has been done on this topic (a systematic review). The research that they find will be analysed to look at how effective the interventions are (a meta analysis), and whether this is different for people with different experiences of mental health difficulties. Research to date only compares two interventions with one another at any given time. These research methods will allow the researchers to compare multiple different interventions at the same time (a network meta-analysis). It is hoped that the results of this research will guide our understanding of which interventions are most likely to be effective in preventing suicide. The review will also help identify where there may be gaps in the research, identifying where future research is needed. 

  • Location: Remote working.
  • Person specification: Someone with experience of suicidality or suicidal thoughts, except autistic people. Autistic people cannot be included in this research because interventions that improve mental health in people without autism may not work in autistic people – this forms part of a separate review.
  • Remuneration: approximately £50 per month for the duration of the project (£25/hour) if the grant is awarded.
  • Task: to attend meetings with the researchers to discuss specific aspects of this project. This will include discussing the importance of the topic for people with lived experience and their families. You will also be asked to provide feedback on some research documents
  • Commitment: around 2 hours/month
  • Deadline: 26th February 2021.

For more information, please contact Audrey Linden: a.linden@ucl.ac.uk


Participation opportunities

(Covid-19 related) The Impact of COVID-19 on People’s Social Connections and Interactions

The study consists of a short survey which aims to better understand individual’s experience of social interaction and communication during the COVID-19 pandemic. The survey asks questions relating to social communication and strategies of communication. This research will enable us to understand how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected social interaction. 

  • Location: Online
  • Person Specification: Aged 16+, fluent in English
  • Remuneration: none
  • Task: One-off short survey 
  • Deadline: 4th March 2021


If you’re interested in participating in this research, please follow this link: https://kcliop.eu.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_6yOVk7jqUd7at8h

For more information, contact Emma Norfolk: emma.norfolk@kcl.ac.uk or 07869463779


**Trigger warning: Suicidality**

Understanding the experience of supporting a suicidal friend or relative with psychosis

This is an interview study to explore the views and experiences of people who have supported or cared for a suicidal friend or relative with psychosis.

The research is being done by researchers at the Spectrum Centre for Mental Health Research, Lancaster University.

  • Location: Online/by phone
  • Person specification: anyone aged over 18 in the UK who has supported a friend or relative with psychosis and suicidal thoughts/behaviours
  • Remuneration: participants will receive £10 in recognition of their time and participation
  • Contribution: a confidential one-to-one interview which takes around 1 hour to complete. Interviews can be done by phone or on Microsoft Teams.
  • Deadline: Ongoing

For more information about participating in this research, please click here to see the participant information sheet.

If you would like further information about participation in this study, please contact: Paul Marshall (p.marshall4@lancaster.ac.uk, or 07732 050853)


(Covid-19 related) Project Title: Attitudes About COVID-19 and Health (ATTACH)

This project is looking at people’s attitudes and behaviours towards the COVID-19 pandemic. The research aims to see the potential impacts on mental health outcomes, particularly for people from Black and Asian populations and those with medical conditions. 

  • Location: Smartphone/Online
  • Person specification: To be a resident of England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland and be over the age of 16. 
  • Remuneration: People who complete monthly surveys and consent to be contacted will be entered to receive a £10 Amazon Gift card
  • Contribution: 1-minute daily poll questions on a smartphone app. 10-minute monthly surveys
  • Deadline: Ongoing

If you would like to take part please go to the trial website: https://bit.ly/attachstudy

You can download the study information sheet here.

For further questions or problems accessing the website or app, please contact the research team via email: ich.attachstudy@ucl.ac.uk


(Covid-19 related) An online study to understand resilience and distress in unpaid caregivers
This study, funded by King’s College London, aims to understand more about distress experienced by unpaid caregivers of people suffering with long-term physical and mental health conditions. They want to understand how people stay resilient.

Participant specification: People who are caregivers or are not currently in a caregiving role. Caregiver participants must be in an unpaid caring role for at least six months, currently caring for an individual with multiple sclerosis, dementia, cancer and/or a mental health condition. Participants must be aged 18 and over.
Location: This is an online study where you will be invited to complete some questionnaires and a computer-based task. Participation should take around 35-40 minutes.
Remuneration: To contribute towards your time, you will be given the chance to enter into a prize draw to win 1 of 20 £10 prizes, 1 of 2 £50 prizes, or 1 of 2 £100 prizes, by entering your email address at the end of the survey.

I’m interested! Who do I contact?
Please see this website for more details.
If you have any further questions, please contact Emma Wilson: emma.wilson@kcl.ac.uk


(Covid-19 related) Understanding access to secondary mental health services during and after the Covid-19 pandemic

There is an opportunity to participate in a mental health study developed by the University of Cambridge (The Healthcare Improvement Studies Institute and the Department of Psychiatry) and The McPin Foundation.
The study explores how the Covid-19 pandemic is affecting access to secondary mental health services and the support they can offer. The aim of this study is to provide practical guidance to NHS mental health organisations on how to design services that best meet people’s needs. You can read more about the study here. 

How can you take part​?
The study team would like to hear about your experiences. Taking part in this study involves having a conversation with a researcher about your experience of receiving care (or not) at ​this time, and how the pandemic affected your usual care /the care of the person you support/your working practice in providing support. ​ 

Participant specification:

  • Are you a clinician working in secondary mental healthcare during Covid-19?
  • Have you accessed, or tried to access, secondary mental healthcare (e.g. inpatient and community mental healthcare) during Covid-19?*
    or
  • Do you support or care for someone who has needed secondary mental healthcare during this time?* 

 *Unfortunately, you will not be eligible if you have tried to access mental healthcare for the first time through your GP or IAPT during Covid-19. 

Location: Individual phone interview
Remuneration: £25

I’m interested! Who do I contact?
If you are interested in taking ​part, please register your interest here. Taking part is entirely voluntary and your contribution would be greatly appreciated.


The NEON Trial: An online study assessing whether accessing real-life mental health recovery stories can improve quality of life and instil hope in those who have mental health problems.

This study, funded by the NHS through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) and sponsored by Nottinghamshire Health Care Trust, aims to understand whether having online access to real life mental health recovery stories can benefit people with experience of psychosis, or people with similar experiences (e.g. hearing voices, hallucinations, non-consensual realities, unusual beliefs). People can take part even with just a single episode of psychosis, and no formal diagnosis is required. We are also running two smaller trials, for people with experience of mental health problems other than psychosis, and for carers.

You will never have to visit the health service or meet any of the researchers to take part, and NEON will never ask you for access to your health records.
If you sign up, you will be allocated to one of two groups. One group receives access to recovery stories immediately and one group receives access in a year’s time.

Participation Specification:

  • Have experience of psychosis, or similar types of experience in the last 5 years
  • Experienced mental health-related distress in the past 6 months
  • Be a resident in England and aged 18 or above
  • Be able to access the internet on a personal computer, mobile device, or at a community venue, even if you need support from others to do this
  • Be able to understand written and spoken English
  • Be able to provide online informed consent

Location: Online – while participating, you will access an online collection of recovery stories (as little more as much as you want) and complete four online questionnaires over the course of a year (10-30 minutes each). There might be a telephone or video interview (no more than 90 minutes) to discuss your experience of taking part but this is optional.

Remuneration: All participants allocated to the NEON Trial will be offered a £20 voucher via email on completion of each set of trial questionnaires, and another £20 voucher will be offered if you attend an interview. It doesn’t matter whether you have been provided with immediate or delayed access to recovery narratives. No remuneration is available for the smaller trials.

I’m interested! Who do I contact?
To sign up, or for more details, please visit https://recoverystories.uk, where you can check your eligibility and access a participant information sheet. If you have any further questions, please contact the NEON Team: neon@nottingham.ac.uk

Registration Deadline: 30th April 2021, though recruitment will finish earlier if enough participants have been recruited.


Clinical Trial Registration for the NEON Trial: ISRCTN11152837
Clinical Trial Registration for our smaller trials: ISRCTN63197153 and ISRCTN63197153


(Covid-19 related) The HYPE Project: Improving the Health of Young People

This is an online research project looking at:

  • The impact of social distancing measures on different aspects of your life and the lives of other young adults.
  • How people are coping during this period, and what has been particularly difficult to deal with.

This information will help the research team to understand how they can best tailor support available on the HYPE website to you and other young adults. They can also share what they find with other organisations and community groups, to help them support young adults too.

The project is supported by the National Institute for Health Research Maudsley Biomedical Research Centre and based at King’s College London.

For more information and to take part, visit: https://hypekcl.com/hype-covid-19-project/

  • Location: Online
  • Person specification: Any young person aged 16 and over and living in the UK
  • Remuneration: Participants of survey will be entered into monthly prize draw for one of ten £10 vouchers
  • Contribution: completing a short online survey, around 15 minutes long, every 2 weeks (around 12 in total)
  • Deadline: Ongoing

(Covid-19 related) Covid-19 Social Study – UK

This is a research project about the psychological and social experiences during the coronavirus pandemic (Covid-19), conducted by University College London.

There are two ways to participate in this study: an online survey or an interview.

Interviews:

  • Location: phone or video interview
  • Person specification: there are various people that the study would like to hear from, including people with mental health problems and healthy young people. Please see this website for the full list.
  • Remuneration: £10 gift voucher
  • Contribution: Interview lasting around 45 minutes
  • Deadline: ongoing

Online survey:

  • Location: Online
  • Person specification: 18+ adult
  • Remuneration: none
  • Contribution: two online surveys of around 15 minutes.
  • Deadline: Ongoing (until social isolation measures end)

(Covid-19 related) Co-SPACE Study – Covid-19: Supporting Parents, Adolescents and Children during Epidemics

This is a survey study about school-aged children (aged 4 – 16) who are living in the UK. The Co-SPACE study will tell us how families are coping during the Covid-19 pandemic, and what parents can do to help support their children’s mental health. The study is conducted by the Department of Experimental Psychology & Department of Psychiatry at the University of Oxford.

  • Location: Online
  • Person specification: 18+ parent of school-aged children
  • Remuneration: None
  • Contribution: one online surveys of around 15 – 20 minutes.
  • Deadline: Ongoing

(Covid-19 related) Co-SPYCE Study – Covid-19: Supporting Parents and Young Children during Epidemics

This is a survey study about pre-school-aged children (aged 2-4) who are living in the UK. The Co-SPYCE study will tell us how families are coping during the Covid-19 pandemic, and what parents can do to help support their young children’s mental health. The study is conducted by the Department of Experimental Psychology & Department of Psychiatry at the University of Oxford.

  • Location: Online
  • Person specification: 18+ parent of pre-school-aged children
  • Remuneration: None
  • Contribution: one online surveys of around 15 – 20 minutes.
  • Deadline: Ongoing

(Covid-19 related) Achieving Resilience during Covid-19 (Oxford ARC study)

Survey investigating how adolescents (aged 13 to 18) and their parents/carers are coping with social isolation due to Covid-19. Participants are asked to complete a survey weekly for about three months and then monthly for nine months.

  • Location: Online
  • Person specification: young people aged 13 – 18, and their parents/carers
  • Remuneration: None
  • Contribution: weekly (for about three months) and then monthly (for nine months) surveys of around 10-15 minutes (first one is 20 minutes long)
  • Deadline: Ongoing

(Covid-19 related) Repeated Assessment of Mental health in Pandemics (RAMP)

This project is looking at the effect of Covid-19 on the mental health and wellbeing of the population. The research aims to monitor the mental health and wellbeing of people in the UK during the pandemic in order to understand the effects so that people can be supported better in the future.

  • Location: Online
  • Person specification: To be a resident of England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland and be over the age of 16.
  • Remuneration: None
  • Contribution: Fortnightly surveys that take around 30 minutes. These will be monthly once the situation is more stable.
  • Deadline: Ongoing

(Covid-19 related) Understanding how young people respond and manage their emotions during the Covid-19 pandemic

This research is looking at the impact of Covid-19 on young people’s lives around the world. Specifically, the research is interested in the ways that young people manage their emotions.

  • Location: Online
  • Person specification: anyone aged 12-25 (consent from a parent/guardian is required for those under 16 years of age
  • Remuneration: £20 gift voucher for UK participants who complete all questionnaires at every time point
  • Contribution: completing some short questionnaires for around 20 minutes every 2 weeks
  • Deadline: Ongoing

You can find opportunities specifically related to young people and more information about projects involving McPin’s Young Person’s Network.

If you have an opportunity that you think is relevant to the work done by McPin, please email: anjahollowell@mcpin.org

When sending us an opportunity for this page, please include:
– A short blurb of the of the opportunity (approx. 150-200 words)
– Location, person specification, remuneration, task, and deadline
– Any links that are relevant, including project websites or information sheets (we can upload PDFs if needed)
Please write about the opportunity in the third person (as the opportunities above are) to help us keep the format consistent on this page.

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