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Jargon Description
Factorial Design

A trial design used to assess the individual contribution of treatments given in combination, as well as any interactive effect they may have. In a trial using a 2×2 factorial design, participants are allocated to one of four possible combinations. This type of study is usually carried out in circumstances where no interaction is likely.

Feasibility and Pilot Studies

Which programme should I apply to? There are a number of NIHR programmes which will fund feasibility and pilot studies. There are no strict rules about which programme funds which feasibility or pilot study and it is for applicants to choose the most appropriate in the context of the guidance on applicability provided by each programme. It may be that it is best suited to the Research for Patient Benefit Programme

Feedback Kiosks

Feedback kiosks are static booths which can be placed in any space and allow people to give electronic feedback on services.They are electronically-operated touch screen devices which can be placed in any space (most often they are seen in hospital waiting rooms and other public spaces). They allow service users/employees/visitors to provide feedback and answer survey questions. The information provided can then be analysed. Kiosks can be used for single events, in order to capture public opinion or feedback on that single instance, or on a permanent basis to monitor performance and measure changes in opinion over time.

Fishbowl Conversations

The Fishbowl techniques is a way of enabling a large group to all contribute to a single conversation. This is done by arranging the room so that the speakers asked to start the conversation are seated in the centre of the room ‘in the fishbowl’, with the other participants seated around them in a circle to listen to their conversation.

Focus Groups

Focus Groups are guided discussions of a small group of citizens. They are normally one-off sessions although several may be run simultaneously in different locations. A facilitator leads a guided discussion of 6-12 people to gauge their views and attitudes on the subject. The discussions are normally recorded and a report is produced of the process and results which is then distributed to the participants. Clients or other interested parties may observe the discussions. Focus Groups provide useful information on how people respond to particular questions or issues, but the short amount of time limits the depth of discussion that can be had.


A process of periodic contact with participants enrolled in the trial for the purpose of administering the assigned intervention(s), modifying the course of intervention(s), observing the effects of the intervention(s), or for data collection

Full and Appropriate Funding

Full and appropriate funding is provided because no upper limit is placed on the amount of funding granted for a project.


Organisation providing funding for a study (through agreements, grants or donations to an authorised member of the employing and/or care organisation). The main funder typically has a key role in scientific quality assurance. In any case, it remains responsible for securing value for money.

Funding Committee

A group of experts who consider grant applications and reviewer reports to decide whether to recommend funding.