Father helping with child's face mask

Covid research and resources

We have collated relevant material to direct you to external resources and guidelines.


The Covid-19 pandemic has had far reaching consequences for everyone.

This also includes the academic departments, staff and students in psychology and their research.

To support researchers during the difficult and changing times, a working group of the Research Board supported efforts to bring together resources available online, to provide them in one singular location. 

We have also utilised some existing sets of guidance, protocols, standard operating procedures, and request forms to create generic templates that can be used.

Recent BPS guidance on ethics and research during Covid-19 is also included.

Official guidelines

In addition to the resources provided by the society, you should make every effort to stay up to date with and abide by the guidelines set out by the UK government, the NHS, and other public health bodies.

Research resources

The aim of this section is to signpost external online resources to support researchers in conducting or restarting their research of Covid-19.

Ethics guidance for both online research and for research of Covid-19 are provided as well as templates for restarting research involving human participants.

To submit links or further information, please contact the Research team

We are keen to support the research community and hope these resources are useful.



  • Covid-19 Research Protocols
    These protocols cover movement around the department and use of the laboratory and office space. They originated from the need to resume laboratory testing but are also applicable to staff and students who are entering the department for other purposes.

  • Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) for Testing of Healthy Participants
    This document outlines the SOPs to be followed when testing healthy participants under the age of 70. It accompanies the Risk Assessment for Testing of Healthy Participants. These procedures refer to testing in ALL Psychology Department labs. All those running or supervising in person research within the department should familiarise themselves with this document while preparing to submit their ethics application to (re)start their projects.

  • Laboratory Clean-Down Procedures
    This document provides a guidance template for the cleaning of all surfaces, furnishings, and equipment, along with how to keep an accurate cleaning record and allow sufficient time between lab sessions.

  • Psychology Department Re-Opening Information
    This document outlines the principles and protocols that will enable the Psychology department to be reopened for research and teaching, commensurate with the timescale and operational constraints imposed by the on-going coronavirus situation, in addition to the established health and safety processes.

  • Request to Resume Face-to-Face Testing
    This document provides a template which can be used by departments whose researchers wish to return to performing face-to-face assessments.

  • Restarting Research with Human Participants
    This document provides guidance and a template for university departments whose students wish to apply for an exception/exemption to restart research with human participants.

Recommended papers

  • Adapting Research Methodologies in the Covid-19 Pandemic: Resources for Researchers
    The resources contained in the document are intended for doctoral and postdoctoral researchers in social research at the stage of research design or data collection, and particularly for those involved in the research on ocean equity issues. Researchers at this stage may have originally relied on face-to-face forms of human interaction to collect their data and they can no longer do so due to the mobility restrictions in place worldwide. This document offers guidance on potentially useful methods to help redesign their projects.

  • Changing Social Research Practices in the Context of Covid-19: Rapid Evidence Review
    The Rapid Evidence Review synthesises evidence available in academic publications from 2020 with the aim of charting how social research methods have been successfully adapted for, or designed for use within, the pandemic conditions of Covid-19.

Desk-based reviews

  • Cochrane Training
    Cochrane has some excellent resources to support systematic reviews.

  • Covidence
    Covidence offers great software to support reviews (subscription may be needed).

Research with children

Other guidance

Online tools


  • Runs in browser
  • Video recording and eye-tracking available simultaneously
  • Infant friendly ET available
  • Free online support via chat
  • Allows multiple sessions for same participant with reminder sent by email
  • You can import other studies and use them as templates
  • There are several guides and displays
  • User-friendly and compact GUI
  • Different prices for different packages
  • Free user version comes with limitations

Visit Labvanced


  • Runs on different operating systems
  • User-friendly and compact GUI (similar to E-prime)
  • Tree-displayed experiment structure
  • You get links to the server hosting the experiment
  • Free

Visit OpenSesame


  • Runs on different operating systems
  • Good GUI
  • Many options selectable from GUI (more than OpenSesame), but need to know how to use them
  • Linearly-displayed experiment structure
  • Free, however payment is needed for Pavlovia Participant Credits (£0.20 per participant)
  • Site License: £1500 per year

Visit Psychopy

Visit Pavlovia


  • Runs entirely on a browser (designed for online experiences!)
  • Good GUI
  • Promising for reaction time
  • Possibility to include external libraries type Webgazer for eye-tracking
  • Possible to collaborate with others
  • You can build both tasks and questionnaires that can be grouped in a single experimental protocol
  • There are several guides and video tutorials
  • Academic: number of respondents (Ns): N = 100 €91,00 + €20,02 VAT; +10 extra tokens free

  • Commercial: number of respondents (Ns): N = 100 €242,00 + €53,24 VAT; +10 extra tokens free

Visit Gorilla


  • Open source
  • Intuitive language
  • Technical support of the team for Java script et similar
  • Possibility of greater support with payment
  • Possibility to pay participants
  • Free but also premium option available (10$ al mese)

Visit FindingFive

E-Prime Go

  • Allows you to program online experiments using E-Prime 3.0
  • Need to pay

Visit E-Prime Go


  • Experimental webcam-based platform

'Who can create studies on Lookit? Any researcher with questions about how kids learn and grow can propose a Lookit study. Each institution using Lookit has to sign a contract with MIT where they agree to the terms of use and certify that their studies will be reviewed and approved by an institutional review board. Studies are also subject to approval by Lookit. As of June 2020 we have agreements with 20 universities.' (see FAQs on their website)

Visit Lookit

Examples of Lookit studies


  • Webcam eye-tracking
  • Integrated in Gorilla platform (and integrate them in any site with some JavaScript lines)
  • Designed for studying the position of the users' gaze in web pages
  • Free

Visit Webgazer


  • Converts motion video to motion capture information
  • Free

Visit DeepLabCut


  • Real-time human pose estimation in browser


  • Free

Visit PoseNet

Overview of PoseNet models

Amazon Rekognition

  • Automatic coding of video captured with webcam
  • Ok for looking versus not looking
  • Identify objects, people, text, scenarios and activities in images and videos
  • Free for a certain period (about 12 months, depending on the package) but with restrictions in terms of the amount of data analysed. Otherwise, payment needed

Visit Amazon Rekognition

Additional online tools

  • Psytoolkit.org
    PsyToolkit is a free-to-use toolkit for demonstrating, programming, and running cognitive-psychological experiments and surveys, including personality tests. PsyToolkit is frequently used for academic studies, for student projects, and for teaching cognitive and personality psychology.

  • Tellab Experiments
    Tellab Experiments aim to empower undergraduates and young researchers to design psychology experiments and to design well-made experiments for students to participate in and modify. Any TELLab experiment can be copied, edited, and tweaked in TELLab editor space.

  • StimuliApp
    StimuliApp is a free app designed to create psychophysical tests with precise timing on iOS and iPadOS devices.

BPS research

The impact of Covid-19 on students, staff and Departments of Psychology in UK Universities

Following discussions at the BPS’s Research Board and Education & Training Board regarding the impact that the pandemic was having in universities, it was decided that it was important to learn more about how this has affected staff and students alike and what the medium- and longer-term challenges may be. This would then help us to better understand how the BPS can support academic staff and students to facilitate teaching and research in ‘the new normal’.