Informed Consent

Prior to taking part in the online survey, participants will be asked to to read and agree to the following information:

Title of Research Study: Improving the Emotional Well-being of U.S. Service Members

Researcher’s Contact Information: Mary Fortson-Harwell,


You are invited to take part in a research study conducted by Mary Fortson-Harwell, PhD Student in International Conflict Management at Kennesaw State University (KSU) and Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the State of Georgia, under the supervision of Dr. Volker Franke, Professor of Conflict Management at KSU ( Before you decide to participate in this study, please read this form and ask questions about anything that you do not understand.

Description of Project

The purpose of the study is to understand the ways in which service members interact with family, friends, faith groups, neighborhood, employment, and/or school when returning home from deployment or transitioning out of the military, and how they think these interactions have impacted their sense of self and emotional health.

Explanation of Procedures

In this study, you will be asked to answer a series of questions online about various roles that you hold in your day-to-day life, how you feel about them and your experiences in civilian life. At the end of the survey, you will also be asked if you are willing to be contacted at a later date to further discuss your experiences transitioning home from deployment or out of military service.

Time Required

Participation in this study will take approximately 20 minutes.

Risks or Discomforts

There are no known risks associated with your participation in this study. You are under no obligation to share any personal information or any information you do not feel comfortable discussing. You may stop the interview at any time without penalty.


There are no immediate benefits associated with your participation in this study. However, sharing your experiences as a service member returning to civilian life will be invaluable to contribute to the purpose of this research by developing recommendations for how to make reintegration more effective. Pending available funding, you also may have the opportunity to win up to $100 in Amazon gift cards.


Your responses to the survey are completely anonymous and no identifying information will be collected as a part of your participation. If you elect to participate in a follow-up interview, the results of your participation in the interview will be kept confidential and any identifying information will be removed from the results of the study. Results from this study may be published in academic journals or as part of the investigator’s dissertation research, or presented at academic/professional conferences. Published research will never include personally identifiable information.

Inclusion Criteria for Participation

All participants must be current or former US military service members and be over the age of 18 to participate in this study.

Use of Online Survey

IP addresses will not be collected in association with this survey.

Online Consent

☐ I agree and give my consent to participate in this research project. I understand that participation is voluntary and that I may withdraw my consent at any time without penalty.

☐ I do not agree to participate and will be excluded from the remainder of the questions.


Research at Kennesaw State University that involves human participants is carried out under the oversight of an Institutional Review Board. Questions or problems regarding these activities should be addressed to the Institutional Review Board, Kennesaw State University, 585 Cobb Avenue, KH3403, Kennesaw, GA 30144-5591, (470) 578-2268.

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