Information for Participants


Thank you for your interest in this survey. We estimate it will take about 15 minutes to complete depending on the options you choose.

Please read the following information carefully before you continue.

This survey at the University of Reading aims to investigate the popularity of houseplants and how this is influenced by social media. The results will also inform an education campaign based on houseplants and botany. Even if you do not own houseplants, please complete the survey as we as we are interested in collecting a full range of opinions and attitudes. Completion of the questionnaire is voluntary and completely anonymous.

The questionnaire is split into five sections, participant information, background information, houseplants, a social media section and a final “thank you” page to notify you that your responses have been recorded. Please do complete every section so that we have a full set of data.

This survey is aimed at those over 18 years old and living in the UK and Ireland.


Data such as age, gender and occupation are asked for, you are not obliged to give this data. All information collected is anonymous and cannot be used to identify you. Therefore we ask that you answer all of our questions to help with our data analysis. These data will be used to determine if these factors affect how likely you are to own houseplants and engage with social media.

You may withdraw from the survey at any time during completion.


  • You must be at least 18 years old to take part in this survey.
  • This survey is aimed at those living in the UK and Ireland. Please only complete this survey if you live in England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland or Ireland.

Please note:

Please read all questions carefully before answering.

Please answer the questions honestly and to the best of your ability.

Data use and Storage

The results of this survey will be used by School of Biological Sciences students and staff at the University of Reading. It will also inform the creation of an educational campaign run on social media.

Responses from the electronic survey will be stored in a private password protected survey account. These data will be retained for a minimum of five years before being deleted. Data will be stored in password protected Excel files for data analysis and will be deleted after the completion of this project.

Data Protection

The organisation responsible for protection of your personal information is the University of Reading (the Data Controller). Queries regarding data protection and your rights should be directed to the University Data Protection Officer at, or in writing to: Information Management & Policy Services, University of Reading, Whiteknights, P O Box 217, Reading, RG6 6AH. 

The University of Reading collects, analyses, uses, shares and retains personal data for the purposes of research in the public interest. Under data protection law we are required to inform you that this use of the personal data we may hold about you is on the lawful basis of being a public task in the public interest. If you withdraw from a research study, which processes your personal data, dependant on the stage of withdrawal, we may still rely on this lawful basis to continue using your data if your withdrawal would be of significant detriment to the research study aims. We will always have in place appropriate safeguards to protect your personal data. 

You have certain rights under data protection law which are: 

  • Withdraw your consent, for example if you opted in to be added to a participant register 
  • Access your personal data or ask for a copy 
  • Rectify inaccuracies in personal data that we hold about you 
  • Be forgotten, that is your details to be removed from systems that we use to process your personal data 
  • Restrict uses of your data 
  • Object to uses of your data, for example retention after you have withdrawn from a study 

Some restrictions apply to the above rights where data is collected and used for research purposes.  

You can find out more about your rights on the website of the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) at 

You also have a right to complain the ICO if you are unhappy with how your data has been handled. Please contact the University Data Protection Officer in the first instance.

Ethical Approval

This project has been subject to ethical review, according to the procedures specified by the University Research Ethics Committee, and has been given a favourable ethical opinion for conduct.  


Participants are welcome to contact us if they have any questions:

Student: Georgina Jarman,

Supervisor: Dr Alastair Culham,


By ticking the box below I confirm that:

1. I have read the information above

2. I understand the purpose of the project and what will be required of me.

3. I have had explained to me what information will be collected about me, what it will be used for, who it may be shared with, how it will be kept safe, and my rights in relation to my data.

4. I understand that participation is entirely voluntary and that I have the right to withdraw from the project any time, and that this will be without detriment.

5 (a). I understand that the data collected from me in this study will be preserved and made available in anonymised form, so that they can be consulted and re-used by others.

5 (b). I understand that the data collected from me in this study will be preserved, and subject to safeguards will be made available to other authenticated researchers.

6. This project has been reviewed by the University Research Ethics Committee and National Research Ethics committee where relevant, and has been given a favourable ethical opinion for conduct.  

Consent Required