After creating a new study, the most important step is to enroll participants. Participants can join your study by downloading Ethica app on their Android or iOS device. There are different ways for participants to enroll in your study: using the study URL, using the study registration code, or using the QR code. You can find all these three information in the study's Design -> Basics page.
The easiest way for participants to join your study is using the study URL. Each study in Ethica has a unique URL, for example:
This URL points to the study's dedicated web page. You can think of this page as the study's landing page. When participants click on the URL of this web page on their smartphone, whether Android or iPhone, they will receive a dialog asking them whether they want to join the study:
The individual can click on Participate, or on Learn More, to read more about the study. As shown in the following image, clicking on Learn More will still provide the participant with the option to join, through the Participate bar at the bottom of the screen:
If your study already has a dedicated web page, you can modify it to present a similar behavior to what was explained above. Therefore, when participants open your study's website on their phone, they can be guided to install the Ethica app and join the study. Please contact Ethica's support team for the required modification details.
Clicking on Participate bar, or the Participate button in the dialog will check whether the individual has the Ethica app installed. If yes, the Ethica app will be opened, and the person will be presented with the study's consent form. In not, the person will be taken to the Google Play or App Store to install the Ethica app.
After finishing the installation and when the app is opened, Ethica will automatically detect the study which the user wanted to join, and shows a custom welcome screen based on the user's study:
This allows you to brand the Ethica app per your study from the very first step. Additionally, there is no need for the user to enter any study code to join your study. As soon as the user logs in or signs up with the Ethica app, they will be presented with the study's consent form and can continue with the registration.
The following video shows how the process, as describe above, works on Android devices:
Using Registration Code
Each study has a unique registration code, which participants can use to join. You can find the study's registration code by going to the study's Design -> Basics page:
Assuming participants have already installed the app and logged in, they can enter the registration code in order to consent and join your study. The following video shows the steps involved in joining a study using the registration code:
Using QR Codes
Each study also has a unique QR code which points to the study URL. The enrollment using study URL was described at the beginning of this article. QR codes are also the same, except that participants don't have to type the URL anymore. Scanning the QR code on the participant's device is the same as tapping on the URL which was described before. When the link presented by the QR code is opened, depending on whether the participant has the Ethica app installed or not, they will be taken to the app to enroll in the study, or to the site to download the app first.
In Ethica, you have the option to specify who should be allowed to join your study. This can be done via Enrollment Type attribute. You can set this attribute while creating a new study, through the Enrollment section. Alternatively, you can set this attribute at a later time by modifying the study design.
Enrollment Type provides you with three options, each of them is explained below.
This option sets the study open to the public. Anyone can join the study as long as they have the study registration code or the URL. You still can invite participants to join your study (see Invitation-based), though holding an invitation is not necessary for participants to join.
Unlike Public studies, Invitation-based studies require individuals to be invited to the study before they can join. You will need to have the email address for the individuals you want to invite to the study. The invited individuals do not have to have an account with Ethica at the time of invitation, but they must create one before they can use their invitation to join your study.
You can invite participants through Participation -> Invitation section of your study. After opening this page you will see the option to invite participants, as shown below:
Clicking on Invite Participants button will open the Invitation List dialog:
Here you can enter the list of participants you want to invite. You can enter 50 names at once, each in a separate row. A given invitation row must start with the email address of the invited participant. The row can also include the first and last name as well, though it's not mandatory. The following rows each represent a valid invitation entry
For each invitation entry, you also can specify a set of attributes. When the invited participant joins your study, these attributes can be used to request certain behavior from Ethica. One example is when using Bluetooth Beacons to capture contact patterns in the study, as described here
After you enter all the invitations, you can press Invite to create the invitations. Shortly after pressing Invite, Ethica will show another dialog with the result of the invitations:
As you can see in the image above, invitations are either created successfully or have failed because of one of the following reasons:
The individual you have invited is already registered with Ethica as a researcher. Ethica does not allow researchers to participate in a study. If the email you have entered is for a researcher, you will receive an error here
The individual you have invited already is part of this study. Therefore, you cannot invite them to join the study again.
Any successful invitation will be added to the invitation list on this page:
Note that at the moment, Ethica does not send any email to the invited participant. Their email address you provide only allows Ethica to validate the participant's identity at the time of their registration, and either allow or prevent their registration. After inviting the participants, you need to send them the instructions to join your study
The invitation list includes the prospective participant's email address, first and last name, the time she was invited, and an option to delete and revoke the invitation. It also shows the participant ID Ethica has assigned to this participant. Participant IDs are unique numbers which Ethica uses to refer to this participant throughout the system.
As long as the participant has not accepted the invitation, their entry is shown here. As soon as they join the study, their entry will be removed from the invitation list and will be added to the Participation -> Adherence page:
The Adherence page does not show the email address or name of the participant, but their Ethica ID will be shown, which is the same value shown in the invitation list.
If you do not want to enroll any new participant in your study, whether temporarily or permanently, you can set the study to Closed. This will prevent any individual, whether invited or not, to join your study. You can change the status of your study or Closed or from Closed to other states at any moment via modifying the study design.