Welcome to the O-ACE POP Study on online active community engagement for mental health and wellbeing.



Oxford University Ethics Approval Reference: R70187/RE007


Thank you for your interest in this Proof of Principle (POP) part of the O-ACE study. O-ACE, which is led by the University of Oxford, aims to optimise the potential benefits of online cultural experiences to reduce distress and enhance positive mental health during and in the aftermath of COVID-19 (Coronavirus). We are now testing a resource using online cultural content from a museum for mental health and wellbeing in young people.

You are invited to participate in this study if you are aged 16-24 years and have access to a desktop or laptop computer. The procedure for providing informed consent and participating in the research is described below. Please read through this information before agreeing to participate by ticking the ‘yes’ box in the eligibility & consent form that follows.


Day What happens e-Voucher


Day 1

Informed e-consent procedure (link at bottom of this information page)

Demographics questionnaire following consent page (~10 mins)

Email with a unique Participant ID (PID) and link to online platform for all further tasks and assessments.

Baseline Assessment (~30-40 mins, must be on a computer)

Email to inform you of allocation (*WoB or #Ash)

Day 2 Morning mood (*WoB or #Ash) Evening Mood (~5 mins, on device of choice)  
Day 3 Morning mood (*WoB or #Ash) Evening Mood (~5 mins, on device of choice)  
Day 4 Morning mood (*WoB or #Ash) Evening Mood (~5 mins, on device of choice)  
Day 5 Exit Assessment (~30-40 mins, must be on a computer) £30
6 weeks Follow-up Assessment (~30-40 mins, must be on a computer) £10


e-voucher: Amazon e-voucher via email

*If allocated to WoB, use link and login using your unique login code on a computer and engage with the content for at least 30 mins each day (days 2-4) between 11am and 9pm and thereafter (until week 6) as often as you like.

#If allocated to Ash, use link to connect to the Ashmolean website and engage with the contentat least once a day (days 2-4) between 11am and 9pm and thereafter (until week 6) as often as you like.

IMPORTANT: Entry to the study will continue until 400 people have completed the Baseline assessment. After the allocation email is sent, participants will be expected to reach the Exit Questionnaire within the timeframe indicated (or within 7 days maximum) in order to complete the study and receive the £30 eVoucher.

Email: Emails should arrive within one business day of the previous step from O-ACE@psych.ox.ac.uk

(please check junk mail and/or ensure you can receive emails from this address).

You are welcome to ask any questions before deciding to take part by contacting Rebecca Syed Sheriff (rebecca.sheriff@psych.ox.ac.uk).

The study is led by staff at the University of Oxford Department of Psychiatry, GLAM (Gardens, Libraries and Museums) and the Oxford Internet Institute (OII).



Baseline Assessments: On the day that you provide informed consent you will be asked some questions about yourself and then (within one business day of completing these) you will be emailed a unique ID number and link to a questionnaire pack (consisting of questions and online tasks) which will take around 30-40 minutes and needs to be done on a computer. Once this is completed you can expect an email (within one business day) informing you which intervention you have been randomly allocated to.

Day 1: You will receive an email informing you which intervention you have been randomly allocated to:

Intervention 1: Ways of Being (WoB), an online cultural resource (from the Ashmolean Museum) aiming to support mental health and wellbeing


Intervention 2: The Ashmolean Museum (Ash) website

  1. WoB: If you are allocated to WoB, you will receive a link and a unique login code to access this resource. Please login to the resource on a computer (not a tablet or phone) and engage with it for at least 30 minutes a day for three days (on days 2-4) sometime between 11am and 9pm, (i.e. between the times that you will be asked questions about your mood – see relevant information below). Your time spent and activity on the resource will be logged.
  2. Ash: If you are allocated to Ash, you will receive a link to the Ashmolean museum website. Please go to the Ashmolean museum website at least once a day for three days (on days 2-4) sometime between 11am and 9pm (i.e. between the times that you will be asked questions about your mood – see relevant information below).

Days 2-4 Questionnaire Completion: Whichever group you are allocated to, over Days 2-4 you will be asked to answer questions relating to your mood twice a day(between 9-11am in the morning and 9-11pm in the evening). This can be via smartphone, tablet or computer and takes a few minutes each time. You will need to use the unique participant ID and link sent to you previously via email to access your Days 2-4 questionnaire packs. We can send text reminders, if you consent to this and enter your mobile telephone number.

Day 5 Exit Questionnaire Completion: On the following day (Day 5), you will be asked to fill in another online questionnaire on a computer. This will take approximately 30-40 minutes. You will need to use the unique participant ID and link sent to you via email previously to access your Exit questionnaire pack.

Following completion of this participation (Days 1-5), you be emailed an Amazon e-Voucher for £30.

Week 6 Follow-up Questionnaire Completion: Six weeks after Day 1, you will be asked to fill in another online survey on a computer (consisting of questions and online tasks). For completion of this, you will be emailed an Amazon e-Voucher for £10.

If you wish, you can also consent to being contacted again for an interview or focus group where we will ask you for your experiences of being involved in this study. If you consent to being contacted by us by email and if selected, you will be sent a link to further information regarding involvement in focus groups. This will involve one or two focus groups of 1-2 hours, which will be conducted online via Zoom or Teams with up to 15 other participants. Before the interviews or focus groups we will also allow you to give consent for audio-recording. However, if you do not consent to audio-recording, you will still be able to participate



No, your participation is voluntary. You may withdraw at any point during any part of the study without giving a reason. You will have to let the researcher know and advise if you would like any information already provided to be used in the study or to be deleted, up until the time of publication.



The data you give will allow us to test the online cultural resource for mental health and wellbeing in young people, particularly to investigate how such an intervention might work. We also aim to publish this research in a journal and use it to inform the design of a bigger trial.


Your participation in any part of this research is voluntary and may be withdrawn at any point until publication. Research data will be stored for a minimum of three years after publication or public release.


Your answers will be anonymous, and we will take all reasonable measures to ensure that they remain confidential. Your data will be stored in a secure restricted access folder on the University drive and may be used in academic publications (in which case it will not be possible to identify you).


You will be given the option to enter your mobile telephone number (for reminders) and email address so that you can receive the links and participant ID needed to complete the study, prompts and/or can be contacted for an interview study. Giving your mobile telephone number or email address does not oblige you to take part in any further research. Your contact information will only be used to contact you if consent is explicitly given. Eligibility for further studies will partly depend on the results of this study.


For confidentiality your contact information (email address and/or mobile telephone number) would be downloaded and kept securely, separate from the other data you supply. We will store your personal contact information (email address and any other information we use to contact you, phone numbers etc.) safely and confidentially in a restricted-access folder on the study drive nested in the secure University server.


As soon as it is feasible to do so, before the end of the study period, your email addresses and other contact information you may provide will be safely discarded and the data will be linked via unique participant ID numbers.


If you consent to being contacted again by email and selected for the interview/focus group study, you will be emailed a link to further information and will be able to provide consent for that part of the study closer to the time.



The University of Oxford is the data controller with respect to your personal data, and as such will determine how your personal data is used in the study. The University will process your personal data for the purpose of the research outlined above. Research is a task that we perform in the public interest. You may access the Privacy notice for this survey here and further information about your rights with respect to your personal data is available from: https://compliance.admin.ox.ac.uk/individual-rights

We would also like your permission to use your anonymised data in future studies, and to share data with other researchers (e.g. in online databases). Any personal information that could identify you will be removed or changed before files are shared with other researchers or results are made public.

Responsible members of the University of Oxford and funders may be given access to data for monitoring and/or audit of the study to ensure we are complying with guidelines, or as otherwise required by law.

The Principal Researcher is Dr Rebecca Syed Sheriff, who is attached to the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Oxford, and is supported by Professor John Geddes, Head of the Department of Psychiatry.

This project has been reviewed by, and received ethics clearance through, the University of Oxford Central University Research Ethics Committee, reference R70187/RE007.

You may find aspects of this study distressing as we’ll be asking questions about your mental health. We will provide you with information for services and helplines in case you feel like you need support with this.



If you have a concern about any aspect of this study, please speak to Rebecca Syed Sheriff (rebecca.sheriff@psych.ox.ac.uk) and I will do my best to answer your query. I will acknowledge your concern within 10 working days and give you an indication of how it will be dealt with. If you remain unhappy or wish to make a formal complaint, please contact the Chair of the Research Ethics Committee at the University of Oxford who will seek to resolve the matter as soon as possible.

Chair, Medical Sciences Interdivisional Research Ethics Committee

Email: ethics@medsci.ox.ac.uk

Address: Research Services, University of Oxford, Wellington Square, Oxford OX1 2JD



UK Based Respondents:

  1. Your doctor/General Practitioner

  1. NHS 111

  1. The Samaritans (https://www.samaritans.org) Tel: 116 123

  1. Shout, text line, 85258

International Respondents

This will depend on which country you are located in. If you are unsure of where to seek help, please see this general advice from the WHO (https://www.who.int/campaigns/connecting-the-world-to-combat-coronavirus/healthyathome/healthyathome---mental-health)