Participant Information Sheet

On this page you will find further details about the research project, including what RMIT University calls a Participant Information Consent Form – which you will need to read to give your consent to participate in the research.

The Problem

The world is currently in the grip of the COVID-19 pandemic that is yet to run its epidemiological course. The current, exponentially rising human toll is tragic and devastating. Many parts of the global economy are in crisis, and the variety of government, business and community responses to the crises hint at their scale and possible duration.

Historically, we know that young people carry a particularly heavy burden in the downstream of crises: in terms of their health and well-being, their engagement in education and training, and their transitions into work. We also know that certain places will be more heavily impacted by these crises, certain labour market sectors will be more heavily hit, and certain populations of young people are more at risk in relation to these challenges. 

The Project

You are invited to take part in the research project COVID-19 and Young People’s Education and Employment Aspirations: A Longitudinal Study of Young People’s Transitions in Geelong.

The text below is what RMIT University calls a Participant Information Consent Form. It tells you about the research project and explains the processes involved with taking part. Knowing what is involved will help you decide if you want to take part in the research.

Please read this information carefully. Ask questions about anything that you don’t understand or want to know more about. Before deciding whether or not to take part, you might want to talk about it with a relative or friend.

Participation in this research is voluntary. If you don’t wish to take part, you don’t have to. If you decide you want to take part in the research project, please contact the key stakeholder for the link to Video-ask ( By clicking the link, you are telling us that you:

  • Understand what you have read
  • Consent to take part in the research project

What is the purpose of this research?

The COVID-19 research project aims to examine the key challenges – in the short, medium and longer term future – facing particular populations of young people in particular places and produce research informed, place based scenarios for young people’s sustainable futures. The project will deliver evidence informed solutions to these challenges. We will work with academic, community, business, Third Sector, and government stakeholders in developing innovative scenarios in relation to identified situations, challenges, and possible futures.

Who is organising and funding the research?

The research has been funded by the Anthony Costa Foundation and initiated by the researchers, Dr. Seth Brown and Professor Peter Kelly.

What does participation in this research involve?

You have been sent an initial invitation to participate in this project because you are within the ages of 16-24 and live in the COGG and have contact with one of the key stakeholders in the Geelong Region Local Learning and Employment Network (GRLLEN) and/or Skilling the Bay. 

When you click on the link provided to you, it will take you to Video-ask. Video-ask is a video/audio capture platform that will allow us to interview you. The platform enables ‘asynchronous (not existing or occurring at the same time) video conversations’ where our research team develop set sequences of text, video/audio prompts/questions. You will have a short time to respond in a ‘piece to camera’ format via Video-ask, before that data is sent to the Video-ask server. You will be asked to provide contact details and consent for use of your submission for the project. The interviews will include topics of COVID-19 including your wellbeing and your thoughts about changes to the economy, work, education, and politics. You will be asked the following questions.

1) My life at the moment

Can you tell us about how you view your life at the moment? This could include covering some or all of the issues/questions below.

  • Are you doing what you want to do? Would you like to be doing something different? 
  • Are you generally happy or satisfied with your life? What are some of the things that make you happy or satisfied?
  • Would you say that you are unhappy, dissatisfied, or anxious a lot of the time? What are some of the things that make you unhappy, dissatisfied, or anxious a lot of the time?
  • Do you feel connected to the world around you – through family, friends, community organisations such as sporting, arts, music or outdoor clubs?
  • Or do you tend to feel a bit isolated, disconnected or alone in your daily life?

2) The world now, and in the future

Can you tell us your thoughts about the current state of the world at the moment? This could include covering some or all of the issues/questions below.

  • This could be about things such as how you think about the COVID-19 crisis and its impacts and where it might be heading, the changes to the economy and education and the world of work of work that AI or robotics or automation might be taking us/you, what you think about the climate crisis and what governments, businesses and communities are doing or not doing in relation to that?
  • There is a lot of commentary about whether young people are hopeful, or pessimistic or optimistic about now and the future. How would you describe yourself in these terms, and why do you feel like this?

3) My life in the future

We want to know a little about your hopes and aspirations for your future. When you think about answering here you might consider the following questions with a brief response.

  • Where do you hope to be living, working or studying in 5 years time?
  • What job or further education would you like to be doing in 5 years time?
  • What skills and/or work and life experiences do you think you will need to have developed to be doing that job or that course?
  • How sure are you about being able to do the things that you really want to do in 5 years time?
  • If you aren’t so sure about whether you will do these things, can you think about what kinds of support would help you get there?

4) Something else?

This is an opportunity for you to say something about your life, and the things that you care about, to some people who have influence in the organisations that are there to support you.

  • Is there anything else that you would like to say at this point that we haven’t asked you yet?
  • Would you be willing to talk to us again next year in the same format to revisit and discuss some of the changes in your life during the next 12 months?

5) Additional Information about you

  1. Age?
  2. Address – Which suburb do you live in? 
  3. Gender – male / female / non-binary / trans / inter-sex / questioning / prefer not to say?
  4. Do you identify as an Aboriginal or Torres Strait islander?
  5. Do you come from a Culturally or linguistically diverse background?
  6. Your Education status
  7. Your Employment status      
  8. Your Housing status
  9. Are you living with a disability?
  10. Are you registered under the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)?

Do I have to take part in this project?

Participation in any research project is voluntary. If you do not wish to take part, you do not have to. If you decide to take part and later change your mind, you are free to withdraw from the project at any stage.

Your decision whether to take part or not to take part, or to take part and then withdraw, will not affect your relationship with the researchers or with RMIT University.

Submitting your completed Video-ask interview is an indication of your consent to participate in the study. You may stop the interview at any time. Unless you say that you want us to keep them, any recordings will be erased and information you have provided will not be included in the study results. You may also refuse to answer any questions that you do not wish to answer during the interview.

What are the possible benefits of taking part?

We cannot guarantee or promise that you will receive any benefits from this research; however, you may appreciate contributing to knowledge. Possible benefits may include improved services supporting young people in COGG.

What are the risks and disadvantages of taking part?

This project will use to create and collect interview data. If you agree to participate in this interview, the responses you provide will be video recorded. Personal information will be collected in the interviews and stored as data on the Video-ask server. We will import the data to the RMIT server where it will be stored securely and used for this project and future research. We will use these video recordings in various public forms that may mean you are identifiable.

You may feel that some of the questions we ask are stressful or upsetting. If you do not wish to answer a question, you may skip it and go to the next question, or you may stop immediately. If you become upset or distressed as a result of your participation in the research project, members of the research team will be able to discuss appropriate support for you.

What if I withdraw from this research project?

If you do consent to participate, you may withdraw at any time. If you decide to withdraw from the project, please notify a member of the research team.  

What happens when the research project ends?

We will provide you with project updates on our website and social media outlets such as Facebook, Instagram and Youtube where we will provide regular updates on the project including posting edited versions of particular videos of interviews with young people. You will also receive a scenario planning report at the completion of the project. 

The analysis of your interviews and others will be used in a number of workshops convened by GRLLEN and/or Skilling the Bay to develop scenarios about young people’s sustainable futures in your community. We may use the interview data for publication and/or presented in a variety of forums.

The research project involves the establishment of a permanent databank of video interviews. Additional use of the information is contemplated in the next year, when you will be invited to participate in a follow-up interview. Again, your consent will be sought from you for the follow-up interview by clicking on the link to Video-ask.

What will happen to information about me?

It is anticipated that the results of this research project will be published and/or presented in a variety of forums. In accordance with relevant Australian and/or Victorian privacy and other relevant laws, you have the right to request access to the information about you that is collected and stored by the research team. You also have the right to request that any information with which you disagree be corrected. Please inform the research team member named at the end of this document if you would like to access your information.

Any information that you provide can be disclosed only if (1) it protects you or others from harm, (2) if specifically allowed by law, (3) you provide the researchers with permission. Any information obtained for the purpose of this research project and for the future research will be identifiable.

Who has reviewed the research project?

All research in Australia involving humans is reviewed by an independent group of people called a Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC). This research project has been approved by the RMIT University HREC.

This project will be carried out according to the National Statement on Ethical Conduct in Human Research (2007). This statement has been developed to protect the interests of people who agree to participate in human research studies.

Further information and who to contact

If you want any further information concerning this project, you can contact the researcher on 0428 625 483 or any of the following people:

Research contact person

NameDr. Seth Brown
PositionChief investigator
Telephone03 9925 7848
NameProfessor Peter Kelly
PositionChief investigator
Telephone+61 (0) 428 625 483


Should you have any concerns or questions about this research project, which you do not wish to discuss with the researchers listed in this document, then you may contact: 

Reviewing HREC nameRMIT University
HREC SecretaryVivienne Moyle
Telephone03 9925 5037
Mailing addressManager, Research Governance and Ethics
RMIT University
GPO Box 2476

Acknowledgement by Participant

I have read and understood the Participant Information Sheet. 

I understand the purposes, procedures and risks of the research described in the project.

I have had an opportunity to ask questions and I am satisfied with the answers I have received.

I freely agree to participate in this research project as described and understand that I am free to withdraw at any time during the project without affecting my relationship with RMIT.

If you decide you want to take part in the research project, please contact the key stakeholder for the link to Video-ask (