Podcasts, Prisons and Pedagogies

Research Study on How Media Arts Spark New Possibilities for Incarcerated Youth

Invitation to be Part of a Research Study

You are invited to be part of an important research study. This FAQ and consent form will help you in choosing whether or not to participate in the study. As a thank you for your participation, you can receive a $15 Amazon gift card by completing the pre-survey, listening to the podcast and completing the post-survey.

Please Note: Participation in this study requires a few steps. The pre-survey, podcast and post survey will all be organized at the bottom of this page. If at any point you need assistance, please email the Principal Investigator, Mindy Faber, at mindy@convergencedesignlab.org.   

Consent to Participate in Research

Please review the information below and then scroll to the bottom of the page to proceed to the survey.

What is this Study and Who is Conducting it?

Title of the Project: Podcasts, Prisons and Pedagogies: A study on how Media Arts Spark New Possibilities for Incarcerated Youth
Principal Investigator: Mindy Faber, Convergence Design Lab in collaboration with Spy Hop Youth Media, Salt Lake City
Co-Investigator: Danielle Maude Littman, LCSW and Doctoral Candidate, University of Denver
Study Sponsor: National Endowment for the Arts, Research in the Arts Program
Institutional Review Board Approval: Columbia College Chicago

What is the study about and why is it being conducted?

The purpose of this study is to deepen our understanding of how audiences are affected by youth voices and media projects shared through podcasts produced by incarcerated youth.  We also seek to learn how the podcasting medium helps youth who are in secure care to communicate effectively to real world audiences through the podcast publishing format.

Who is Spy Hop?

Spy Hop is a nonprofit digital media arts center offering free classes in film, music, audio, and design for students ages 9-19. Spy Hop provides classes at its center in Salt Lake City, as well as satellite locations and schools across Utah.

What is Sending Messages?

A radio podcast, operated by Spy Hop, is created by incarcerated youth from secure facilities such as Decker Lake Youth Center. Participants earn art or English credit each month while they write, perform, record and produce poetry, short fiction, spoken word, and interviews that are then compiled into podcasts. Sending Messages is the only, and certainly the longest running, podcast produced by incarcerated youth in the country.

Am I eligible to participate in this research study?

By participating in the pre-questionnaire, you agree to the following:

  • You are 18 years of age or older
  • You have little to no previous experience listening to Sending Messages podcasts
  • You reside in the greater Wasatch Front region of Utah or in other communities in Utah where young people from the region may have been incarcerated.

What will happen if I take part in this study?

If you agree to take part in this study, you will be asked to do the following:

Complete a pre-questionnaire – This anonymous questionnaire will be provided to you through an online link and will take less than 6 minutes to complete. After completing that questionnaire, you will be provided a link where you can listen to a Sending Messages montage, approximately 35 minutes in length. You will be asked to listen to the podcast montage within 24 hours of the time you filled out the questionnaire.

Listen to a Sending Messages audio podcast montage – This podcast episode will feature personal stories, spoken word pieces and poems created by youth in secure care facilities. It may contain reflective conversations between the youth creators and their instructor discussing the creative process. Participants are invited to listen to the podcast however they normally listen to radio, podcasts, audio books, etc. Links are provided to a set of optional additional listening experiences, as well as for those of you who want to learn more.

Complete the post-questionnaire – After listening to the podcast montage, you will receive a link and an email reminder to complete a post-listening questionnaire. This will take less than six minutes to complete. At the end of completing this questionnaire, you will receive a link to access a $15 gift certificate code for Amazon.

How long will this study take and how many people will be in the study?

Participation in this study will take 45-60 minutes on average for respondents to complete.  We are seeking 60-75 people from Utah to participate in the study.

How will I be compensated for being part of the study?

You may elect to receive a $15 Amazon gift card after participating in this survey to compensate you for the time spent listening and answering questions. 

What risks and discomforts might I experience from being in this study?

There are no known risks associated with this research study other than the possible inconvenience of the time it takes to participate in the study. You may feel uncomfortable reflecting on some situations or topics. At any time, you can choose not to respond to a question or to stop participating in the study.

If you agree to participate in this study, your consent in this document does not waive any of your legal rights. This study is low risk, however, in the exceedingly rare event of harm arising from this study, neither Columbia College Chicago nor the researchers are able to give you money, insurance, coverage, free medical care or any other compensation for injury that occurs as a result of the study. For this reason, please consider the stated risks of the study carefully.

Other than compensation, how might I benefit from this study?

There are no direct benefits anticipated for you to participate in this study. Indirect benefits include an opportunity to build your understanding of how podcasting can be used as a way to help bridge gaps between incarcerated youth and their communities/audiences. There may be additional indirect benefits derived from contributing to your knowledge base about art practices that improve learning and development for youth in secure care.

What data is collected?

As part of this study, we will collect your answers to questions about your attitudes, beliefs, and experiences concerning incarcerated youth. In the Pre-Listening Questionnaire, you will also be asked a series of demographic questions. In the Post-Listening Questionnaire, we will provide you with an opportunity to respond voluntarily to an open-ended question that you may answer at your discretion. You will also be asked about how your views may have altered after listening to the podcast montage. Your answers will be used to report on research findings. However, NO data will be traced back to you or any identifying information about you.

Confidentiality: How will my information be protected and secured?

Confidentiality means that the investigator will keep the names and other identifying information of the research participants private. Your identity as a research participant is private and anonymous. No names or IP addresses will be collected. 

  • The corpus of data as a whole, will be viewable only by research team members. We will write reports and make presentations for Spy Hop staff and for other educator audiences (teachers, mentors, researchers) that may include quotes collected from questionnaires or transcribed written quotes (only from those participants who are recorded in a focus group or interview). 
  • Audio files (focus group participants only) will be collected on data cards and uploaded to an encrypted computer, and the original data will be deleted from data cards. We will protect all the information we collect using password protection, locked files, and encryption. After analysis is complete, audio data will be fully and permanently deleted five years after the publication of this study.
  • In rare circumstances, confidentiality cannot be guaranteed. The circumstances would typically involve required reporting laws that concern abuse or neglect.

The following procedures will be used to protect the confidentiality of your information:

  1. The researcher(s) will keep all study records locked in a secure location.
  2. Any audio files and electronic files (focus group participants only) will be destroyed after five years from the date of publication.
  3. All electronic files containing personal information will be password protected.
  4. Information about you that will be shared with others will be unnamed to help protect your identity unless you ask that your real name be used.
  5. No one else besides the investigator will have access to the original data.

What will happen to the information after the study is over?

We will keep your research data to use for future research for less than five years. No information that can directly identify you will be stored or collected as part of the project.

What are my rights? 

Your participation in this study is voluntary.

It is totally up to you to decide to be in this research study. Participating in this study is voluntary. Your decision to participate will not affect your relationship with Spy Hop, Convergence Design Lab or Columbia College Chicago. You will not lose any benefits or rights you already had if you decide not to participate. Even if you decide to be part of the study now, you may change your mind and stop at any time. You do not have to answer any questions you do not want to answer. If you wish to stop participating at any time, simply close your browser window..

Contact Information for the Study Team and Questions about the Research

If you have any questions about this research, you may contact:

Mindy Faber, Principal Investigator, Convergence Design Lab, Chicago
Phone: 847-902-9158
Email: Mindy@convergencedesignlab.org

Contact Information for Questions about Your Rights as a Research Participant

If you have questions about your rights as a research participant, or wish to obtain information, ask questions, or discuss any concerns about this study with someone other than the researcher(s), please contact:

Columbia College Chicago
Institutional Review Board
Phone: 312-369-8795
Email: IRB@colum.edu

Your Consent

Before agreeing to be part of the research, please be sure that you understand what the study is about. You can print a copy of this document for your records. If you have any questions about the study later, you can contact the study team using the information provided above.

By clicking the Proceed to Pre-Survey button below, you are agreeing to be in this study. If you wish to stop participating at any time, simply close your browser window.

IRB-2022-00282| IRB Approval Date: May 24, 2022

Step 1

Step 2

Thank you for completing the Pre-Listening questionnaire – now comes the listening experience!

Click here to listen to the Sending Messages Episode 82 podcast on Apple podcasts.

Click here to listen to the Sending Messages Episode 82 on Spotify podcasts.

Click here to listen to the Sending Messages Episode 82 on Libsyn.

When you are finished listening, please return to this page to complete a post listening survey by clicking the button below.

(you can also subscribe to the Sending Messages Podcast to listen to every episode)

Step 3

Additional Resources

Thank you for your participation. We know that hearing about traumatic things can bring up things for us. We have compiled a list of supportive resources that we invite you to access should they be useful for you. These resources include:

LIVE ON Utah website and Crisis Line (text or call 988)
For gang or violence related support – Choose Gang Free
To calm feelings of stress or anxiety, we recommend this Mindfulness Video

If you want to talk to a social worker, please email the Principal Investigator who can connect you with a licensed MSW.

What if I need more information?

If you have any questions at all, feel free to write to the Principal Investigator for this study at mindy@convergencedesignlab.org