More about the project:

  • This project has documents participants can access to learn more about what is involved in being a part of the project.
  • Below is a list of general FAQs about the project. If you have a question that isn't listed here, contact the research coordinator at
  • If you want to learn about what is involved in the study for you as a student, please look over the Overview for Students.
  • Also, we encourage you to download and read the project’s consent forms to understand what is involved in research with human subjects.

Is it mandatory to participate? Are there repercussions if I don’t participate?

The study is completely voluntary. To make this study a success, we hope as many students as possible will participate as we want our study to be representative of emerging adults continuing to college.  But, if you choose not to participate, there will be no negative repercussions. Your school/university will neither know whether or not you have participated nor what your responses to any of the questions are if you do participate. Your participation will not affect your class work.

What if I am continuing to a two-year program or community college?

Students continuing to any university, college, two- to four-year programs including community colleges are eligible to participate.

Why do students under 18 need to have parental consent?

In the state of Virginia, students who are younger than 18 years of age are considered minors. There are a set of rules in the research regulations that protect minors. One of these protections is that minors cannot give permission to be in research without parent authorization (consent). Students who are under age 18 are eligible to participate with parental consent and youth assent. Students whose parents provide parental consent and who provide youth assent themselves will be invited to provide consent after their 18th birthday during their freshman year.

How do you keep the data confidential?

A random ID number is generated for all study participants. Your information will only be available to study investigators and research staff who are provided with a password to access a secure server where the responses are stored. The study staff who have access to the names of participants (necessary for reimbursement) will not have access to your survey response, and the investigators who will be analyzing the data from the survey responses will not have access to your names or any other identifying information.

Can I participate more than once?

Participants can take the initial study survey only once; however, since the study is investigating the relationship between contextual and behavioral processes that predict the successful transition to college, it is helpful to get a longterm view of how things are changing over time. So, while we only need parents to participate once, we will invite previous student participants to follow-up with another survey in the fall of 2016 and again in the spring of 2015. That way we can see how friends, family and other factors that contribute to your environment might change over time.

I indicated that I didn’t want to participate, but I’ve changed my mind. Can I still be a part of the study?

Please e-mail the research coordinator at, who will reissue an invitation to participate as long as the data collection is still ongoing (and/or add you back to the mailing list for future correspondence).

I completed my survey. How do I get paid?

Students will be contacted at the email address they provided within two weeks of completing the survey regarding their payment information. If participants have any questions about payments they may contact the study coordinator at or 804-827-8238.