Simple Service: Participate in Research

I work at the Oregon Social Learning Center – a social science research institute. If you ask my five-year-old daughter what I do, she gets excited and says, “My mom does science on people!”

We’ve talked about why science on people is important and the thing that has resonated most with my girls is when we discuss how we need to help others but that we can’t help others if we don’t understand or know anything about them. That’s why scientists have to learn about them before they can help.

Aside from discussing my job with my girls, I try to get my children involved in “science on people” as much as I can. Since we live in Eugene, OR, there are a lot of opportunities to be research participants! The University of Oregon, the Oregon Social Learning Center, the Oregon Research Institute, and Portland State University are all places where we’ve been involved in research. Though this idea may seem a little unconventional for a service project, it is a great thing that you can do with your child for the community. Not to mention it’s fun and there’s usually a toy, gift card or money that you get in return.

In this video you’ll see my daughter (when she was two) participating in the FIND project through the University of Oregon. Scroll to 3:43:24 to see where they start talking about the FIND project and scroll to 3:51 to see her directly:

Here is a picture of my daughter’s latest participation in the KITS study through Portland State University. An assessor came to our house and played some games with her.

Ready to get involved? Contact universities and research institutes in your area!

(For local Oregonians, check out these opportunities: The University of Oregon, the Oregon Social Learning Center, the Oregon Research Institute, and Portland State University)