WE Research FAQs

Please reference the information below for answers to frequently asked questions.

What is the purpose of this study?

The goal of this study is to evaluate the use of technology to incentivize and evaluate risk and wellness behaviors in college students. You will have access to the UVM Wellness Environment App (WE App) through your iPhone (generation 5 or newer) or Android device, which will incentivize and encourage you to participate in wellness promoting activities, such as exercise, nutrition, hydration, sleep, and mindfulness.

How long is the study?

The study began during the 2017-2018 school year, and will run for a total of three academic years (2017-18, 2018-19, 2019-20).

Who is eligible for this voluntary study?

We are recruiting First-Time First-Year (FTFY) UVM students for the study. To be eligible to participate in our voluntary research study, you must be between the ages of 18-25, you must own an iPhone 5 or newer or Android device, and you must be willing to complete three online surveys per year, along with daily surveys administered through the WE App. We are recruiting students who belong to the Wellness Environment and traditional housing students/Learning Communities, referred to as College As Usual (CAU) students.

How many students are you recruiting for the 2019-2020 academic year?

We are recruiting up to 900 FTFY WE students and 900 CAU students.

How many total participants will be in the study?

We will enroll up to 5,600 total participants in the WE App study.

How do I get access to the WE App?

In order to get access to the WE App you need to attend a check-in session to enroll in the study, and you must complete the online consent process which will be described during the check-in session. Once these requirements have been fulfilled, you will receive instructions on how to access the WE App.

Do I get to keep my Apple Watch?

Every Apple Watch distributed is the property of the University of Vermont. You must meet all study expectations by either your UVM graduation or the end of the study in June 2020 (whichever comes first) to be eligible to keep the Apple Watch provided to you. If you are asked to return the Apple Watch, based on withdrawal (either voluntarily or by not meeting expectations) and you fail to do so, we will contact UVM Police Services to handle the matter.

How do I join the study?

To join the study please check that you meet the eligibility criteria, and then you must attend a WE App Study Check-In session. Please bring your UVM CatCard as well as a form of government issued identification (license, passport). The session will last about 10-15 minutes, and will provide you with the details that will allow you to consent online for the study.

What are the expectations to remain in the study?

To remain an active participant in the WE App Study, you must be a full-time UVM undergraduate student, and you must complete all three of your annual online surveys each academic year. Failure to complete the any of the online surveys will lead to withdrawal from the study. In addition to the online surveys, you will be incentivized to use the WE App, and complete short daily surveys each evening.

How long are the surveys?

The daily surveys through the watch consist of about 10 questions and take less than 30 seconds to complete. The surveys that will be emailed out to you 3 times each academic year will take about 45 minutes to complete each time.

How do I contact the WE Research Team?

Please reach out via email at WE.Research@uvm.edu or stop by our office in Patterson 113 on Redstone Campus.

What if I am studying abroad?

If you are able to complete the longer online surveys and utilize the WE App you are welcome to remain in the study while abroad.

What do I do if I am transferring or withdrawing from UVM?

You must be a full-time UVM student in order to remain in the WE App Study. If you are leaving UVM for any reason you must email WE.Research@uvm.edu to withdraw, and you must return your unpaired Apple Watch.

What is WE Coin?

WE Coin is the virtual currency that WE uses to provide incentives for logging activities in the WE App. These include attending various WE and UVM events, taking daily surveys, and more! WE Coin will be awarded via scanning a QR Code, and will accrue within the WE Bank in the app. You can trade in the WE Coin for various items in the WE Store.

Are there any other studies that go along with the WE App Study?

There is a study entitled the Chest Strap Exercise Study that ran from February 2018 through August 2019 where participants were incentivized to log exercise sessions using a separate data-collecting app. This study is no longer accepting new participants.