My name is James Wark and I am an undergraduate student at the University of Glasgow. You are being invited to take part in a research study gathering the experiences of young people who have lived under shared parenting circumstances. You have been chosen because you indicated to us that you would be willing to participate in a focus group or a one-to-one interview in our survey. Before you take part, it is important that you understand why the research is being done and what it will involve. Please take time to read the following information carefully. If there is anything that is not clear or you would like more information on, please feel free to contact me at 2383428w@student.gla.ac.uk. Please take the time to decide whether or not you wish to take part.

Summary

We are looking to learn more about the experiences of young people who have faced a parental separation, and how that impacted them going forward in life. The purpose of this study is to investigate common challenges that arise under shared parenting from the young person’s perspective, in order to develop better support methods for these individuals. Firstly, I will conduct an online survey for both those with and without separated parents, in order to hear about experiences on a large scale. I will then hold focus group interviews in order to further develop these experiences. I would like to further understand and clarify some issues in reference to parental separation including; 1) Why you felt as though you could not see your secondary parent, 2) Has your outlook on the situation changed as you have gotten older? 3) Did you feel like you could go to your parents for support, or is there times you felt like you had to be the one to support them? There are more issues that will be discussed.

What’s involved if I agree to take part?

We are keen to support you to decide whether this research study is suited to you. In our focus group interviews, we would like to hear from those with separated parents, who feel comfortable talking about their situation and how it has affected them. If you have more questions, please feel free to contact me. If you would like to take part, we ask that you sign a consent form. You are free to withdraw at any time without explanation, and you are free to ask for your data to be taken out of the research analysis. The transcript for the focus group will be completely anonymised and will be destroyed shortly after the conclusion of the study.

This research will use a focus group to generate discussion about the topic area. A focus group is a small group of individuals (4-6) who share a similar experience or view. We think that a focus group will provide a good way to share experiences and opinions with others. This will be held over ZOOM, and we anticipate that the focus group will last no longer than an hour. A researcher called a ‘facilitator’ will welcome you to the group and help support the focus group to discuss the broad areas of questioning. The discussion that goes on within the focus group will be recorded and we will transcribe the discussion so we can present a summary of your experiences.

Confidentiality

We do not want to reveal any personal information about yourself or your family as part of this research. We will remove specific references in the write up of the focus group discussion which may reveal your identity. We will take the following steps to make sure that your personal information and particular details of your experiences are not shared.
We will take the following steps to maintain your confidentiality: 1) Changing your name and changing names of any other people, places or organisations 2) All participants in the group will sign a consent form and in doing so promise not to share individual details or personal information out-with the focus group 3) All recorded discussion will be securely stored and made accessible to future researchers in a form which protects individual, personal information. 4) It may not be possible to ensure anonymity due to the individual experiences which you may report. However, you may contact us and ask us to remove any data from analysis, and we will take all necessary precautions to ensure you are comfortable with the report being published.

What are the possible risks of taking part?

The main priority of the researcher is to ensure that you feel as comfortable as possible to speak openly about your experiences. However, as this can be a very sensitive topic, you may at times feel distressed by the discussion. You are not required to answer every question, and the facilitator will make sure the discussion is made as open as possible, so you should not feel any pressure to answer if you do not feel comfortable. You are also free to leave the focus group at any point without explanation and you can request for your data not to be used in analysis.

Who is organising this research?

This research is being conducted as part of a BSc Psychology Dissertation. The research is supervised by Dr Guillaume Rousselet and has been granted ethical approval from the University of Glasgow.
Many thanks, James Wark – 2383428w@student.gla.ac.uk

Please first complete the introductory questions then select the question set that applies to you, depending on your parental relationship status.

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