I don’t feel comfortable giving you my Social Security Number (SSN). Can I still be in the study?

If you don’t provide your SSN, you can’t be in the study. It’s important that you provide your SSN so that the study team has an understanding of your background and the government services and benefits you receive. Let me reassure you that your SSN and all of the other information that is requested on the consent form will be treated confidentially.

How are youth assigned to the study groups?

Youth are assigned to the study groups by a computer program. The assignments are completely random; PROMISE staff have no control over them. Every youth who enrolls in the study has the same chance of being assigned to one of the study groups, and nobody has an advantage. The groups that youth are assigned to are not affected in any way by their race, gender, age, or other personal characteristics.

Why is group assignment random? I think the process is unfair.

Assigning people to groups randomly is like picking names out of a hat or flipping a coin, so that everyone will be fairly treated. This way, everyone has the same chance of being in one of the two study groups. Remember, the decision about which group you are assigned to has nothing to do with things like your age, gender, race, ethnic group, or disability.

Why can’t everyone get PROMISE program services?

Even if PROMISE services were not provided randomly, services would not be made available to everyone. Funding for PROMISE is limited, so even if the study were not taking place, not everyone who is eligible could receive PROMISE services. Because funding is limited, the fairest way to choose who will receive PROMISE services—among those who are eligible—is to pick them randomly. That way, everyone has an equal chance of receiving these services.

If I’m in the program group, does this mean I will get all of the services that the PROMISE offers?

Being in the program group means that the study will not restrict in any way the services that you may receive. However, you will only be able to access the PROMISE services that your CSC determines that you need (based on assessments and discussions with you) and which are available.