Participant information for the online study

Human cooperation: a multimodal approach – experiments with women with Borderline personality disorder (MenKoopBPS)

Dear participant,

With this letter we invite you to participate in the above-mentioned study. Please read the following information carefully. You can then decide whether you would like to participate or not. Allow yourself sufficient time and ask the study staff any questions that are important to you. The study is funded by public money (from the German Research Foundation).


 Purpose of the study

This study is part of a larger project on borderline personality disorder. This part is for comparison with the general population and all people can participate. In some mental illnesses, such as Borderline Personality Disorder, interpersonal relationships are strained by instability, frequent misunderstandings and conflict. In research, these difficulties in interpersonal relationships in people with Borderline Personality Disorder have so far been mainly descriptive. However, to better understand and treat the relevant mechanisms, it is useful to directly observe and study the behaviour and the changes in pupil (and also brain activity) that occur in different social situations.

In this study, we therefore want to investigate how people with borderline personality disorder behave in different social situations compared to healthy people.

Personal benefit from participating

The results from this study can contribute to learn more about Borderline Personality Disorder and to improve treatment. Therefore, your participation could help future patients with this disorder. You will not gain a personal benefit from participating in this study.

Duration and procedure of the study

This online study consists of a series of questions that you can answer online. The duration of each specific experiment varies from study to study, but is on average under half an hour. You have already seen the exact duration of the experiment at Prolific.

In the online experiments, you will be presented with some situations and asked to make decisions about how to allocate different amounts of money and/or points in these situations. Some situations involve real money or points that are converted into real money. In such cases, your decisions may affect their final financial reward. Other situations are hypothetical and have no impact on your compensation. In all cases, we will always clearly communicate 1) whether real money is involved or a hypothetical situation, 2) how the points in the experiment will be converted into real money, and 3) how this may affect your compensation. In some situations you will go through all the conditions and in others you will be randomly assigned to different conditions. This randomisation will not affect your final reward, so it will be equally fair for all subjects.

Unintended effects/risks

In the online survey, you will be asked to make simple decisions about money distributions. We do not expect this study to cause you any psychological distress. If you suffer from significant distress after completing the online survey, please contact one of the staff or the study management immediately (Jun.-Prof. Dr. C. Korn 06221/56 4363, Klinik für Allgemeine Psychiatrie, Voßstr. 4, 69115 Heidelberg).

The examination can be cancelled at your request at any time without giving reasons.

Data protection

The provisions of data protection law are complied with. During the online survey, your decisions and individual demographic information will be collected from you and stored electronically. This data is automatically pseudonymised by so that you can be compensated for your time. Pseudonymisation is the processing of personal data in such a way that the personal data can no longer be attributed to a specific data subject without the addition of additional information (“key”). This additional information is stored separately by and is subject to technical and organisational measures which ensure that the personal data cannot be assigned to an identified or identifiable natural person. has access to the pseudonymisation code but has no access to the data.  We only receive the pseudonymised data that you give us and this may therefore only be passed on to universities/clinics/companies in pseudonymised form, possibly also to countries where data protection requirements are lower than in the European Union. Third parties will not be given access to original documents. The study management will take all reasonable steps to ensure the protection of your data in accordance with European Union data protection standards. The data is secured against unauthorised access. Decryption of the data is not possible from our side. If you withdraw from the study, we can delete your data if you so wish. As soon as it is possible according to the research or statistical purpose, the personal data will be anonymised. Anonymisation is the alteration of personal data in such a way that individual details about personal and factual circumstances can no longer be attributed to a specific or identifiable natural person, or can only be attributed to a specific or identifiable natural person with a disproportionate amount of time, cost and labour. It is not possible to draw conclusions about individuals. The data is published in anonymised form when the results are published, so that other researchers can use this data to check the results and to analyse further questions. Since this data is anonymised, no one, including yourself, can draw inferences from the data to your person.

The data may also be used for other/future questions if necessary. You have the right to limit the use of the data in the consent form.

You have the right to request information from the person responsible (see below) about the personal data stored about you. You can also request the correction of inaccurate data as well as the deletion of the data or restriction of its processing. The person responsible for the study-related collection of personal data is:

Jun.-Prof. Dr. phil. C. Korn

Sektion Soziale Neurowissenschaften, Klinik für Allgemeine Psychiatrie

Voßstr. 4, 69115 Heidelberg

Tel. 06221/56 4363



If you have any concerns about data processing and compliance with data protection requirements, you can contact the Data Protection Officer at Heidelberg University Hospital:

Datenschutzbeauftragter des Universitätsklinikums Heidelberg

Im Neuenheimer Feld 672, 69120 Heidelberg

Tel.: 06221/56 7036



In the event of unlawful data processing, you have the right to complain to the following supervisory authority:

Der Landesbeauftragte für den Datenschutz und die Informationsfreiheit Baden-Württemberg Postfach 10 29 32, 70025 Stuttgart

Königstraße 10a, 70173 Stuttgart

Tel.: 0711/61 55410

Fax: 0711/61 554115





The employees of Heidelberg University Hospital are insured against liability claims by study participants. You must immediately report any damage that you believe is attributable to the study to the study director.


You will receive a financial compensation of 8 euros per hour for participating in this online survey.

Voluntariness / Withdrawal

Participation in the study is voluntary. If you wish to participate, we ask you to sign the enclosed consent form. You can revoke this consent in writing or verbally at any time without giving reasons and without incurring any disadvantages. If you wish to withdraw your consent, please contact the study management or the staff treating you. In the event of a revocation, you can decide whether the data collected from you for study purposes should be deleted / recordings made should be destroyed or may continue to be used for the purposes of the study. Even if you initially agree to further use, you can still change your mind later and request deletion of the data / recordings; to do this, please also contact the study management or the staff treating you. Please note that data that have already been included in scientific evaluations or data / recordings that have already been anonymised can no longer be deleted at your request.


If you have any questions, you can always contact Herrn Jun.-Prof. Dr. phil. Christoph Korn (Tel. 06221/56 4363).

We would be grateful for your participation in this research project!


Jun.-Prof. Dr. phil. C. Korn

Head of study