Barrier to Participation


Barrier to Participation

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Laura
Laura
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I am excited to say that I have my web experiment up and ready to go, using 3.0.4.0.  However, I am concerned that many of my participants will not be able to access the survey because they work in large agencies that do not allow them to have administrative rights on their computers (therefore preventing them from downloading the software necessary to run the experiment).  When generating my launch page I selected all 4 options (activeX, clickonce, MozillaPlugin, javawebstart), with the hope that this may reduce some barriers.  Are there any suggestions for how to minimize this barrier?  Should I encourage participants to use Firefox instead of Explorer, for example?  I am thrilled with the flexibility this software provides, but I see this as a major limitation.  I would appreciate any advice that anyone has to offer!  Thanks,


Laura


stephonomon
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Laura,


I am right with you on that. I am surveying Child Protection Staff who work in agencies with computers controlled by IT staff. Out of 120 people who have already logged onto my experiment, I have only received emails from about 5 people who had trouble accessing the study from work. I asked them to try at home, and most had no trouble doing so. I also had a couple Mac users get stymied as well and one used a friend's PC. Inquisit seems pretty flexible about Firefox v. Explorer so I don't think making an explicit direction either way will change things.



Stephon


seandr
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Good questions here:


First, the best way to reach the broadest number of participants is to select all of the technologies (click once, java webstart, activex, mozilla plugin) and let the launch page try to determine which will most likely work.


Second, there is no need to push participants to use IE or Firefox - they are both equally functional. If you were targeting a specific set of computers and knew what was pre-installed on them, you might be able to optimize for one browser or the other, but if you are targeting PCs in the wild, neither has a clear advantage. Note that the Safari and Google browsers work as well, although there are a few minor bumps in these cases.


Third, on a majority of computers, Inquisit can be installed and run by normal users without administrative privileges on their computer. The only exceptions are computers that 1) don't have Firefox 3 or later AND don't have java 1.5 AND don't have the .NET Framework 2.0 or later. Only if all three conditions are met (which is increasingly rare) will users have to be an Admin on the machine.


Finally, if  participant can't get the study to launch, point them to the links at the bottom of the page under "Having trouble starting?" These will allow them to try a different download method if the first didn't work for some reason.


Hope this helps,
Sean


P.S. Fifth, Inquisit does not currently run on the Mac. I am madly coding away to get things working on the Mac, but it's a ways off yet.






Laura
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Thanks Sean -- that information is very helpful.  I was under the impression that everyone would need admin rights to download, so thanks for clearing that up.  Thanks also for pointing out the "having trouble starting" option -- I will make sure that participants are aware of this. 


Stephon, it is encouraging to hear your success story!  Hopefully I will also have that small of a percentage of people who have trouble with access!


Thanks again for the quick responses,


Laura


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