Thanks for your interest in joining the LEANS project Participatory Design Team!

Can you help us explain neurodiversity to mainstream students and teachers?

A paid opportunity to join the team designing a free, downloadable neurodiversity resource pack for UK mainstream primary schools

What will the participatory design team do?

The LEANS participatory design team will be a group of approximately 8 people with prior experience in UK education and/or neurodiversity issues. They will work collaboratively with LEANS researchers to develop the draft content and format of the neurodiversity resources. We are keen for the final resources to be engaging and meaningful for a diverse group of primary students, teachers, and school communities. All design team participation will be fully online, and will include focus group discussions and reviewing and commenting on draft materials.

We think this is a truly exciting and hands-on opportunity to make a positive difference in education, but the resources will only be possible if people like you are willing to contribute your experience. In thanks for your time and contributions, we are able to pay design team members £20/hour for participation in design sessions. See more information on time commitment and scheduling, below. There will be an opportunity to be credited on the final resources if you choose.

The following information sheet explains in more detail what is involved in being a member the LEANS participatory design team. If you have participated in other education, design, or psychology research, this participation opportunity may be quite different in multiple ways. We encourage you to read the entire information sheet before completing an expression of interest form, or contacting us with questions about joining the team.

You can access the information sheet and consent form here (opens in new tab).

This project has received ethical approval from The School of Education and Sport Ethics Sub-Committee at the University of Edinburgh.


Scheduling and time commitment information

The first online preparation tasks (such as reading additional project information) will be available the week of July 6th. The first 90-minute online focus group session will take place in the week of July 13th. We will schedule the exact time slot, and the subsequent focus groups based on team members’ availability.

If you already know that you will not be available the weeks of July 6th and July 13th, or that you would be unable to correspond with us in late June about scheduling, we would ask that you please do not complete an Expression of Interest form. However, please do contact us by e-mail about other ways to be involved with the project!

There will be a total of seven cycles of online preparation (approximately 1 hour’s worth of work) followed a few days later by a focus group (90 minutes), scheduled every 2-3 weeks from July until the end of October, 2020. Team members are not required to participate in all cycles. We ask for a minimum commitment to four design cycles in order to join the team.


Interested in being part of the team?

To help us recruit a team who represent a balance of skills and experience, we are asking interested people to complete a short, online Expression of Interest form by Noon on Wednesday, June 3rd, 2020.

We plan to review all forms and be in touch by the end of Friday, June 19th, 2020, with the design work starting in early July as described above.


I have a question!

You can contact the project team at with queries about the information sheet, expression of interest process, timeline, or anything else related to the design team. We will do our best to answer quickly. Please put “design team recruitment” in the subject of your e-mail.

Thank you for supporting neurodiversity education in schools!

Dr. Alyssa M. Alcorn, Lead Researcher, on behalf of the LEANS project team: Dr. Sue Fletcher-Watson (Principal Investigator), Dr. Sarah McGeown, Dinah Aitken, Fergus Murray, Siena Castellon, and Dr. Will Mandy