This 12-day study examines the relations between everyday hassles, coping, health behaviours and emotions.
If you have any questions or would like more information, please get in touch:
This project has been approved by the Monash University Human Research Ethics Committee: Project #2017-8245.
The point of wearing the actigraph watch on the non-dominant wrist is to help standardize across everyone who participates. Previous studies show that activity measurements are different when the same ActiGraph is worn on the wrist or ankle, or somewhere else. It is also a bit different if worn on the non-dominant or dominant wrist. To make sure we can compare across days and different people, it is really important that everyone wear the ActiGraph watch on the non-dominant wrist.
If there are parts of the day you cannot have it on your wrist, the best thing is to take the watch off, and then put it back on when you are done.
Part of the value of this study is that most health and psychology research is done in laboratories or very artificial contexts. Having daily surveys completed in everyday life and using location data to shed light on how environments influence people’s feelings and behaviour is on the cutting edge of science, and more importantly may help the research you are participating in be more relevant to people where it really matters: in everyday life, not in the laboratory.
Below are three examples of questions we will answer with location information and your help and participation.
Example 1. Several recent studies have shown conflicting findings whether the number of places visited per day is related to how you feel. We hope to shed light on this debate. To explore this, we will create a variable that is the count of how many places each person visited daily (e.g., 1 place, 4 places, 8 places). Then we can look at how the number of places visited is related to stress, feelings, or behaviors like sleep. The answer could help us provide suggestions for what to do to feel the best, and could be further tested in future interventions (e.g., for people who are dealing with depression).
Example 2. Our environments influence how we feel and behave. With location data, we can advance scientific understanding of what the influences of environments are. For example, for the times corresponding to each survey, we will create a variable whether you spent most of that time period at: home, school/work, or somewhere else. If there are differences in how people feel or behave in different environments, that information can help target interventions more specifically. We do not know the answer, but if for example, people are happiest at home, least happy at school/work, and the most stressed when at other locations, that would suggest a stress reducing intervention would be most useful away from home/school/work, but an intervention too make people feel better or happier may be best delivered at school or work. Right now, Psychology has very little information to guide whether interventions are particularly relevant for any specific times or places, but this study can begin to provide answers.
Example 3. Throughout the study, some people travel. Because we are looking at sleep and other aspects of daily life, if you travel to another city for a few days, it is likely those days are very different than normal. To look at this, we will create a variable that measures whether you were within the Melbourne region all day or travelled outside the Melbourne region (a yes or no variable). Again, we will never report specific locations. An example of how that might get reported would be, “On days when participants travelled outside of Melbourne, they reported less sleep and more positive emotions, on average”.
As mentioned in the explanatory statement and consent:
The mobile app will also use your smartphone to collect location information to help us understand environmental factors that may influence results. If you do not wish location information to be collected, you may request this information not to be collected.
Know that we take your privacy and confidentiality very seriously. We will never disclose specific location data to anyone or in any publications. Even on the study team, the only personnel with access to the location data is the lead researcher who will personally create the aggregate variables from location information (like number of places visited daily), so that no one else has access to your specific location information. Other study members will only ever access the aggregated variables. Access to location data is also carefully secured using encryption and strong passwords: 12 or more characters including numbers (0-9), letters (a-zA-Z), and special characters (e.g., *, $, etc.).