Could your team help drive improvements in research by asking participants to complete an anonymous survey about their experience of taking part in NIHR research?

Last year almost 600 completed surveys were returned to us by Trusts and GP surgeries in North West London, contributing to over 20,000 surveys collected across the rest of the country. A detailed report will be available later this year.

This year’s Participant Research Experience Survey (PRES) remains one of the NIHR’s nine priorities, or high level objectives, underlining the importance of listening to and learning from study participants to improve how we deliver research. 

We appreciate now may not be the right time to deliver this year’s survey due to the demands and restrictions of COVID-19. If you are unsure about whether to provide the survey to your study participants, please consult your R&D department. Please ensure you follow your trust’s infection control policies when distributing the survey.

This year there are four versions of the survey:

  • Adults
  • Ages 0-6
  • Ages 7-11
  • Ages 12-15

The surveys are for people, including healthy volunteers, who are currently on a Clinical Research Network Portfolio study (including commercial studies) and are at a point in the study where they feel they can give their views. They don’t have to wait until the end of their study to complete the survey.

Due to printing restrictions, we are currently unable to offer a leaflet-style survey as planned. Instead, we have A4 surveys which you can download and print as well as access online versions – you can find them in the resources section further down this page.

You can send completed surveys to our offices through the post (see address below) or wait for our team to collect the surveys.

Tips for Completing the Survey

  • Surveys that can’t be linked to a specific study aren’t counted towards your Trust’s target. Please make sure to complete the ‘for staff use’ box in advance at the bottom of each survey with the study’s name, location and IRAS and / or CPMS number, to provide the best quality data.
  • Ask participants to complete the survey at appointments as experience shows this is more likely to result in them being completed than if they take the survey home.
  • Ask participants to complete the survey online using the links provided on the front of the survey or below. This could also be through providing tablet computers in the clinic (if available) or sending the relevant link by email or text message, if you have their consent to do so. Please ensure you provide the study IRAS / CPMS number..

How are the results used?

Once the surveys are returned to the Clinical Research Network North West London, we will upload them to our PRES Results Dashboard, allowing you to react more quickly to feedback from research participants and uses them to make improvements to your practice.

We will also share people’s good experiences of research on our website and social media (with permission). Promoting examples of positive experiences of research is likely to assist those who care for and support patients, to better understand the importance of research in the NHS, GP surgeries, care homes and other spaces where health and social care happen.

PRES 2020/2021 Resources

PRES Delivery Guide Google Doc (accessible)

Online Survey

During the current pandemic we strongly recommend the use of our online survey, which can easily be emailed to participants on completion of their study visit.

Print Survey

You can download the below resources and print locally on A4 paper. We will be producing printed versions of the below when our print suppliers are able to do so.

Promotional Materials

We will be printing posters and post cards to give to participants who wish to complete the survey online as soon as it’s possible to do so. If you would like a poster for your waiting areas please email


Who chose what questions to include in this year’s survey?

The questions were set by the CRN Coordinating Centre following a long period of consultation with Local Clinical Research Networks such as ourselves, our research partners, and most importantly people who have taken part in research. It was then reviewed by the Picker Institute.

For how long will the PRES run this year?

The survey will run until the end of March 2021.

Where can I find last year’s results?

You can see an overview of results on the 2019/20 PRES Dashboard. A full report will be shared later this year.

Do we need ethical approval to run the PRES?

The PRES is not a research project rather regarded as service evaluation, therefore, no ethical approval is required for LCRNs and NHS Partner Organisations to implement PRES. 

How much will it cost us to run the PRES?

The CRN NWL will cover all costs involved in running the PRES, namely survey design, printing and postage costs. Any extra costs for delivering the PRES by Trusts and partners must be agreed by the CRN NWL beforehand.   

Contact Information

This project is being led by our Communications and Engagement Manager, Danielle Neal.

If you have any questions or feedback please email Dani at or call 07788 388 082.