Get involved with our research | University of Oxford
Research volunteer
Research volunteer
Credit: Rob Judges. This image comes from Oxford University Images

Get involved with our research

Some of our research projects rely on the generosity of people like you. Whether it's harnessing the power of your home PC, taking part in a clinical trial, or simply volunteering your time for a study, you may be able to contribute to some of the ground-breaking projects which make the University of Oxford a world leader in research. Watch this space for ways in which you could get involved.

We are looking for you!

Who are we?
We are the Oxford Centre for Emotions and Affective Neuroscience (OCEAN lab) led by Prof. Elaine Fox. We are situated at the Department of Experimental Psychology at the University of Oxford. Find us as http://www.psy.ox.ac.uk/research/ocean

What do we do?
We explore the link between psychological flexibility and wellbeing in a healthy adult population. We want to understand how cognitive and affective flexibility is linked to our mental wellbeing.

What do you have to do?
During a first session you will be asked to fill in some questionnaires and perform a computer based task, and engage in a brief interview about your mental wellbeing (the session will last around 40 minutes in total). After that we ask you to fill out online surveys once a week for 4 weeks (which will take around 5 minutes to complete). We will ask you to fill out online surveys again after 2 months, 6 months and 1 year (which will take around 20 minutes to complete) and engage in a brief telephone interview about your mental wellbeing after 2 months, 6 months and 1 year (which will take around 10 minutes).

You will be reimbursed for your time.

You can take time to think about it and ask questions before you decide whether or not to take part in our study! Your enquiry will be kept confidential and you will not be obliged to take part. Please do not hesitate to contact for more information
holly.banfield@hmc.ox.ac.uk (Holly Banfield - Trainee Clinical Psychologist)

Healthy male volunteers wanted for study to limit the impact of steroids

Targeting Iatrogenic Cushing's Syndrome with 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 1 Inhibition (TICSI)

2-3 percent of the population of the UK are prescribed steroid treatment to treat a wide variety of conditions. Whilst steroid treatment is very effective, it is associated with a significant number of side effects that can include weight gain, the development of diabetes, high blood pressure, fat in the liver and thinning of the muscles. Currently there are no treatments available to limit the side effects of steroid medication.

In previous studies, we have shown that an enzyme called 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 1 (11β-HSD1) regenerates additional steroid in liver, fat and muscle and this has a detrimental impact upon how these tissues function. We believe that inhibiting 11β-HSD1 will be a new way to limit the side effects of prescribed steroids without compromising their anti-inflammatory actions.

AZD4017 is an inhibitor of 11β-HSD1 that has been used in many clinical studies.

We will use this drug in healthy male volunteers, in the first study of its kind, funded by the Medical Research Council, to see if we can limit the side effects of steroid treatment. The steroid medication that we will use in this study is called prednisolone and the effects of AZD4017 will be compared against a dummy pill (placebo). If the results of this study are positive, then it has the potential to change the way in which steroid medication is prescribed and to reduce the side effects of a commonly prescribed class of drug.

Nantia Othonos, Oxford Centre for Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism

Tel: 01865 857359
Email: nantia.othonos@ocdem.ox.ac.uk

Low in mood? Participants needed for emotional decision making drug study

We are looking for volunteers aged 18 - 65 who are currently feeling depressed to participate in a study investigating the effects of a new medication on emotional decision making.

If you are NOT taking antidepressant medication, you may be eligible for the RESTAND study.

  • Duration: Four appointments (one screening visit, one first dose appointment, and two research visits) - about 13 hours in total
  • Who can participate? Participants who are feeling depressed/low and not taking antidepressant medication or undergoing psychological therapy, aged 18 to 65
  • What does the study involve? The study mainly involves taking medication for 7 days, computer-based psychological tasks, questionnaires and one brain imaging scan

REC Reference: 18/SC/0076

If you ARE taking antidepressant medication, you may be eligible for the RESTART study.

  • Duration: Three appointments (one screening visit, one first dose appointment, and one research visit) about 11 hours in total
  • Who can participate? Participants who are currently taking an antidepressant but are still feeling depressed/low despite this, aged 18 to 65
  • What does the study involve? The study mainly involves taking medication for 7 days, computer-based psychological tasks and questionnaires

REC Reference: 18/SC/0074

For more information in confidence, with no obligation to participate, please contact our research team at either restandstudy@psych.ox.ac.uk or restartstudy@psych.ox.ac.uk. You will be reimbursed for your time!

The effect of seven day prucalopride administration on emotional processing in healthy volunteers

Healthy volunteers are needed for a study investigating the effects of seven-day administration of the drug prucalopride on the processing of emotions.

If you are healthy, aged 18-40 years, right-handed and have no history of a psychological disorder please contact us for more information. You will be asked questions about your medical history to check your suitability for an MRI scan.

The study is run at the Department of Psychiatry, Warneford Hospital, University of Oxford, over 3 sessions. The study involves a screening visit, and taking the drug or placebo for 7 days. The second visit includes a brain scan using functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI). MRI is a type of brain scan that allows us to see how the brain is organised, processes information, and performs skills like speech or memory. This scan is safe and does not involve any needles or injections. The third visit includes computer-based psychological tasks.

lucy.wright@psych.ox.ac.uk
01865 618319

Time and reasonable travel expenses will be reimbursed.

Central University Research Ethics Committee number: R57219/RE001

Have you had fertility treatment in the UK? Were you asked about the use of your data? 

When patients start fertility treatment in England they have to fill in a lot of forms, and among these is an HFEA form to consent to disclose identifiable information. This is the form where people decide whether to allow their personal information to be used in research. We are trying to find out more about how people make this decision, and more about their experiences. We are looking for volunteers who would be willing to be interviewed.

If you might be able to help, or would like more information, please contact Dr Claire Carson at the National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit: claire.carson@npeu.ox.ac.uk or (01865)289755

For more information, please see our study web page: https://www.npeu.ox.ac.uk/taking-part-study

Oxford Vaccine Group

The Oxford Vaccine Group, part of the Department of Paediatrics, is an independent multi-disciplinary clinical trials and epidemiology group based at the Centre for Clinical Vaccinology and Tropical Medicine. OVG works towards the goal of developing new and improved vaccines for the prevention of infection in adults and children, enhancing the understanding of immunity and studying the epidemiology of infectious diseases.

To find out which research projects are currently recruiting volunteers, please see the OVG website or email info@ovg.ox.ac.uk .

Oxford Education Deanery 

We warmly welcome interest from teachers in local state-maintained schools that are members of the Oxford Education Deanery that want to engage with/in research and/or undertake continuing professional development. Opportunities available to eligible teachers include the NQT induction programme, Action Research Fellowships and the Enhanced Masters in Learning and Teaching. We are also keen to work collaboratively with local Deanery schools to develop research projects that meet school needs and disseminate findings effectively. If your school is not a Deanery member and you are interested in joining, please contact emma.klose@education.ox.ac.uk.

What's the score at the Bodleian Library?

The Bodleian Libraries are looking for your help in increasing access to their music collections. Over four thousand digitised scores, mostly piano music from the nineteenth century, many of which have illustrated covers, have now been made available online. By describing these images, you will not only be helping to provide access to this valuable but hitherto 'hidden' collection, you will also be facilitating future research into popular music of the period and the wider social function which it performed during the Victorian age.

Free Speech Debate

Join Professor Timothy Garton Ash's global debate on free speech.  Read and criticise the project's 10 draft principles. Explore controversial examples. Hear the thoughts of others. 

The editorial content of the website is being translated into Arabic, Chinese, English, Farsi, French, German, Hindi, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Turkish and Urdu.

Ancient Lives

Armchair archaeologists are needed to help decode ancient Egyptian papyri, written in Greek.

Vaccine Trials

The Jenner Institute works to develop innovative vaccines against major global diseases such as malaria, tuberculosis and influenza and often needs participants for trials. To find out which trials are currently recruiting volunteers, please see the Jenner Institute website or email vaccinetrials@ndm.ox.ac.uk.

Galaxy Zoo

By taking part in classifying galaxies with our Department of Astrophysics, you'll not only be contributing to scientific research, you'll also have the chance to view parts of the Universe that literally no-one has ever seen before.

Moon Zoo

Become a virtual astronaut and examine the surface of the moon. You'll not only get the chance to spot things that have never been seen before - everything from lost Russian spacecraft to previously unseen geological features -  but you'll also help us answer vital scientific questions.

Nuffield Centre for Experimental Social Sciences

The Centre for Experimental Social Sciences is currently recruiting for its pool of people potentially interested in participating in paid experiments in social sciences.  Experiments are either carried out online or in our facility in central Oxford.

Participants are rewarded between £10 and £15 per hour on average, and no particular knowledge in any discipline of social sciences is required.

Oxford eXperimental lab for the Social Sciences

The Oxford Internet Institute, together with the Saïd Business School, is recruiting individuals to participate in computer-based experiments involving online surfing behaviour as well as economic and political decision-making. We pay our subjects well, there are no special skills required and you don't have to be a student to take part!

Climateprediction.net

Climateprediction.net, run by researchers at the Department of Physics, harnesses the power of volunteers’ computers to produce predictions of the Earth’s climate and test the accuracy of climate models. You can take part by running a climate model as a background process on your computer, and you'll get to see your own, unique version of the world evolve.

Experimental Psychology research

The Department of Experimental Psychology is always looking for volunteers for a changing portfolio of research projects. 

Diabetes clinical research

Clinical trials – the controlled testing of the safety and effectiveness of new therapies with lots of patients – are essential to medical science, yet recruiting volunteers can be a problem. If you’re interested in learning about the benefits and what’s involved, a new website has been launched by the Diabetes Research Network, coordinated by the Oxford Centre for Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism (OCDEM) and Imperial College London.

Effects of Fluoxetine on anger processing in healthy male volunteers

Are you a hotheaded person? Do you have a fiery or quick temper?

Are you are male, healthy, aged between 18-55 years, fluent in English and have no history of psychiatric problems (like depression or anxiety)?

If you answered YES to all the above questions, we would love to hear from you!

You will be asked to fill in a questionnaire to assess the way you usually respond to frustrating or negative situations. We will then contact you if you score within a particular range.

The study involves a single dose of a common antidepressant and a session of behavioural/emotional testing and we will reimburse you for your time and travel expenses.

This study has been approved by the University Research Ethics Committee.

Performance on cognitive tasks: volunteers needed

We are conducting a research study to assess if a new medication affects performance on cognitive tasks and need people 18-45yrs old to complete our online questionnaire.

The study involves visiting our research facility on 3 occasions.

You will receive compensation for your time and reasonable travel expenses will be reimbursed.

To participate in this research you must be:

  • Male or female aged between 18 and 45 (inclusive)
  • Fit and well, both physically and mentally
  • A light or a non-smoker
  • Right handed
  • A fluent English speaker
  • Willing to take one dose of study medication or dummy medication

To get in touch, text STUDY to 70099, call 07760 486222, or email us at sep_study@psych.ox.ac.uk to find out more.

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