Child Development Center Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What kind of research takes place in your program?

A: As a program operated by the Psychology Department, all children and parents are invited to participate in the research studies being offered.  Research opportunities are available to all University faculty and departments who are interested in learning more about the field of early childhood education and development.  All research studies are reviewed and approved by the Rutgers University Institutional Review Board (IRB) to ensure that they are safe and appropriate for children.  After obtaining IRB approval, prospective studies are sent to the Psychology Department’s Research Director for review and approval.  Upon receiving the Research Director’s approval, the study is then sent to the Preschool Director for approval.  Studies which have been reviewed and approved by the Preschool Director and all parties are then distributed to the parents. Parents have the opportunity to read about the study, to ask questions, and to decide whether or not they wish to participate.  Some studies have different levels of participation that parents may choose.  Research participation is completely voluntary and parents and children are not obligated to participate in any research studies as a condition of enrollment.  Further, each child is asked for their permission to participate—even if a parent gives permission for their child to participate, the child ultimately reserves the right to refuse to participate.  However, we find that most children are very eager to participate!  Research studies are usually in the form of games, or include puppets/toys as part of their implementation, and are interesting to children.