Child Assent Procedure

Georgia State University Procedure:

Under 6:

No assent is required. Provide to the IRB information about how you will ensure that the children want to participate and are not getting upset.

Ages 6-10:

Verbal assent must be obtained and documented by PI. Submit an assent script to the IRB for review.

Ages 11-17:

This age group must sign a separate assent document. The document will be no more than one page in length and explain what will happen, and why, risks involved, any benefits, and the option that they could withdraw e.g., “you can refuse to be in this study, and your parent(s)/legal guardian(s) cannot force you.” Also, a statement which would in effect say that they can “stop being in the study at any time” It need not contain other standard items like alternatives, cost/compensation and disclaimers, new findings, contacts, and confidentiality. Once the study is explained to the child, he or she should be asked to sign the assent, but if this were too intimidating, the consenter could indicate that the assent was obtained verbally.

Parental Permission:

Consent needs to be obtained from the parents of children involved in research through a Parent Permission Form. This document needs to be in the format of an informed consent, but should be in third person (i.e. your child). The title of the document should the Parent Permission Form.

Should the assenting child decline participation in this study, the PI, the parent(s), or legal guardian(s) cannot force the child to participate.

The Georgia State University IRB may determine that some children age 17 do not need parental consent depending upon the type of research being conducted (i.e., the research study is conducted on a University campus, is a survey or questionnaire, and is determined to be a minimal risk.)