Resources for Conducting Research

Need resources for conducting studies in the Psychology Department at UBC?

Yay, you’re in grad school! Now it’s time to conduct some experiments — that’s why you’re here, right? Here is a directory of resources for you that will help you along your way.

Design your experiment. If you’re an incoming Psychology Grad student, you’re likely taking (or about to take) PSYC 545a, everybody’s favorite advanced introduction to statistics class. This is step one for obtaining a solid background in research methods (if you don’t have one already). We’ve all got to take it, so your fellow senior grad students will be experts in this stuff and will likely be happy to be there for bouncing design ideas off of. Conduct literature reviews with the help of the UBC Library. Did you know they offer a lot of books and textbooks online, so you might not even need to set foot in the real library itself? A favorite article search database of ours is Web Of Science.

Obtain ethics approval. You’ll need to do this with the Office of Research Ethics, and you will definitely need to get comfortable with the online ethics application system RiSE (short for “Researcher Information Services”). Check out some of the tutorials for help (and for the fun example study titles, like “Does Anyone Really Train for the Sun Run?” and “Will the Vancouver Canucks Make It To The Playoffs This Year?!” — topics you new arrivals will soon come to really appreciate, we’re sure). If you are working with special populations or anything other than minimal risk research on university students, you may be required to obtain a TCPS2:CORE certificate. We recommend you obtain one anyway to ensure you are very familiar with the ethics guidelines and procedures outlined by the Tri-Council.

Get people to participate. You can put your study up on the Human Subject Pool (HSP). The current contact for this service is your fellow grad student Zak Witkower. If you can give remuneration, Craigslist is always an option, and you may also want to advertise on the paid studies list.

Conduct statistical analyses. If you’re having trouble with this step, some fellow grad students have been appointed to help you out. Check out Statistical Consulting for more information. Note this service is for research, not for coursework.

Write a manuscript & publish. The Graduate Pathways to Success program may occasionally host writing seminars, and a list of events for graduate students can be found at What journal should you publish in? Your advisor will likely have some good ideas about this, and you will probably want to publish in a journal that you find yourself consulting often. Wikipedia has this handy though incomplete broad list of psychology journals if you’re feeling curious.

Tell the world about your cool study! If you think your study warrants a press release, you may want to chat with our resident Communications expert, currently Bonnie Vockeroth. Find the most up-to-date contact information at the department’s staff contacts page.


Interested in participating in studies?

If you stumbled across this page because you’re interested in participating in a study here at UBC Psychology, we have two resources for you.

First, there is the Human Subject Pool (HSP). If you’re an undergraduate student taking a psychology class at UBC, you may be able to participate in studies in exchange for course credit. Look here for more information about HSP for students.

If you are not taking a psychology class, you may be eligible for some of the studies advertised on the Paid Participant Studies list. This list advertises studies that offer remuneration in exchange for participation, and includes studies primarily in Psychology, and occasionally areas like linguistics, vision science, audiology, and computer science.