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Information sheet

You are being invited to take part in a research study. Before you decide whether or not
to take part, it is important that you understand why the research is being done and what
taking part in the research will involve. Please read the following information carefully
and discuss it with others if you wish. If you have any questions or would like more
details, please ask! Thank you for taking the time to read this.

Project title: Exploring the gendered experiences of those who do not feel sexual attraction,
and those who choose not to be sexually active
Researcher: Karen Cuthbert, PhD student, Sociology, University of Glasgow
Email: k.cuthbert.1@research.gla.ac.uk
Supervisors : Dr Matt Dawson (Matt.Dawson@glasgow.ac.uk) and Dr Francesca Stella
(Francesca.Stella@glasgow.ac.uk)
What is this study about?
My name is Karen Cuthbert and I am doing a PhD in Sociology at the University of Glasgow.
I am conducting research which looks at how people who do not feel (much or any) sexual
attraction towards others, and/or who choose not to be sexually active, think and feel about
their sexuality and gender, and the kind of experiences that they might have.
I am doing this research because previous work that has been carried out with these groups
has tended to ignore the issue of gender. I think this is an important gap to address. My
research takes a social (rather than psychological or medical) approach and it is my goal to
ground my research in the lived experiences and perspectives of participants.
Who is invited to take part?
I am interested in talking to individuals who feel they can be described by at least one of the
following:

You dont feel much or any sexual attraction towards other people

You choose not to be sexually active

You might also identify with terms like asexual and/or celibate but this is not a requirement
of the study.
You should also be over 18.
Do I have to take part?
No - it is entirely up to you to decide whether or not to take part in the study. If you decide to
take part, you are also free to withdraw again at any stage without having to give a reason
why. If you withdraw from the study, you also have the choice to withdraw any data that you
have previously given.

What will happen to me if I take part?


If you decide to take part, you will be invited to participate in two face-to-face interviews with
myself (these can also be conducted via Skype or phone). In the first interview I will ask you
some questions about your experiences, although the conversation will be open so you will
be able to talk about whatever you think is relevant and important.
After this interview, I will then invite you to make a notebook or scrapbook (which can be an
actual book, or can be electronic) in which you can include writings, diary entries, drawings,
photographs, collages, playlists etc. on the topic of gender. If you like, I can give you some
suggestions or prompts for things to include. I would like you to return this to me shortly
before the second interview (which will be about 4 weeks later), where we can then go
through it together and talk about some of the things you have included. With your
permission, Id like to keep hold of the notebook for my research (stored securely!), but the
notebook will be returned to you once the project is finished.
Both of the interviews will be very informal and relaxed, and you do not have to answer any
questions that you feel uncomfortable with. If you prefer, you can take part in the interview
without having to make a notebook.
Each interview will last for about an hour and a half. They can take place at a date, time and
location of your choosing. With your permission, I would like to make an audio recording of
the interviews. From the audio recordings I will make a transcript of what we have both said
which I will then analyse as part of my research.
What will happen to the results of the research?
The results of the research will be used in my PhD, which I will submit in September 2016 at
the earliest. If you like, I can provide you with a written summary of the research, or even a
copy of my PhD itself, once it has been submitted. I may also use the results from this study
in conference presentations, academic journal articles or in a book. I may quote some things
you have said, and/or include some extracts from your notebook (see the section below for
how I will ensure your privacy in this regard).
Will my taking part in this study be kept confidential?
All paperwork and documentation relating to the research will be kept in a locked filing
cabinet in my secure office at the University of Glasgow. Any electronic files will also be
stored in a password protected folder, of which only I have access to. All information will be
held in line with the UK Data Protection Act (you can read more about this here:
https://www.gov.uk/data-protection/the-data-protection-act). With your permission, I would
like to retain copies of the research data for a maximum period of ten years after submission
of my PhD for future research purposes.
When I come to write up my PhD and any other pieces of work arising from the research, you
and any information that you give me will be anonymized. This means that people who read
it wont be able to identify you or anyone you might mention. This can be done through
changing names, removing details of where you live and work, and taking care not to use
extracts from the notebook which have identifying features.
All information that you give me will be treated confidentially. However, it is important that you
know that research data is not legally privileged this means that the police/courts can
request the research data if such a situation ever arises.
Who has reviewed the study?
The College of Social Science Ethics Committee at the University of Glasgow has reviewed
and approved this study. If you have any concerns about the way the research is being

conducted, you can contact Muir Houston, the College of Social Science Ethics Officer. His
email address is: Muir.Houston@glasgow.ac.uk
Who is funding the study?
The study is being funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (www.esrc.ac.uk).
What next?
If after reading this you would like to take part, please send me an email at:
k.cuthbert.1@research.gla.ac.uk and I will get back to you. Im also happy to talk about any
concerns or questions you may have!