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This research invitation is requesting your participation in an interview asking you about your experience of Avatar based therapy as a therapist offering avatar based interventions. The research aims to explore the helpful and unhelpful aspects of using avatar based interventions in regards to the therapeutic relationship. I hope to explore how using avatar based interventions affects the therapeutic relationship and how this may compare or contrast to more traditional forms of psychotherapy. For the purposes of this study, avatar based interventions are defined as using software, computers, or a virtual world that allows a client and/or therapist/counsellor/psychologist to manipulate the virtual world and/or characters in the world for the purposes of therapeutic change. This can be with the client and therapist in person or done remotely from a distance.
The type of data to be collected
This research uses a semi-structured interview to ask about your experiences of providing avatar-based interventions. It is not expected that this interview will take longer than 1 hour. I hope to interview up to 12 participants but only you and I, the researcher will be present in the room. Interviews may be in person on the University of Roehampton Whitelands college campus, private rooms in the University of Roehampton library, or via Skype. It may be possible to conduct interviews in a library in Central London. For potential participants outside of the UK, I will accommodate the time difference.
Confidentiality and anonymity
Interview responses are kept anonymous and confidential. Each interview will be given a code for data collection and analysis purposes and only the research team will listen to recordings for transcription purposes or access data. However, if you agree to an interview via the Qualtrics link below, I will need contact information in the form of an email address.
I will treat all data you provide in confidence. Your identity will be protected in the publication of any findings, and that data will be collected and processed in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998 and with the University’s Data Protection Policy of the United Kingdom.
Inclusion criteria include a) 18 years or older, b) member of, certified by, or registered by a therapeutic governing body as a psychotherapist or counsellor, c) have experience as a face to face therapist without the use of avatar based interventions, d) have experience providing avatar based interventions which includes interaction directly with the client.
If you would like to kindly participate or would like more information, I can provide an information sheet via the email address below. There is also a set of demographic and pre-interview questions to answer to ensure inclusion criteria are met for this research. The link is included here: https://roehamptonpsych.az1.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_befrI1wNGuJATUF
This link is a pre-interview questionnaire and an expression of interest. I only need up to 12 eligible participants to interview. Once I have that number, I will no longer be recruiting. Whatever the outcome, I will contact you to let you know.
Name and contact details of primary investigator
Name: Melanie Baker
University Address: Whitelands College
Postcode: SW15 4JD
Email: avatarresearch(at)yahoo.co.uk or bakerm(at)roehampton.ac.uk *
* Insert @ where you see (at).