## Protocol planning

Interviews:

  1. Introduce participant and explain purpose of the research. Provide participant information sheet.
  2. Present participant with consent form and explain what different levels of consent mean (e.g. consenting to data sharing in aggregate vs allowing video to be shared as an example).
  3. Background questionnaire will be conducted, by loading questionnaire on laptop and asking participant to fill out.
  4. Set up recording to record audio and/or video as per participant’s preference.
  5. Participants will be asked to perform Task A and Task B, with the starting task alternating between A and B in case one task affects performance in the other.
  6. Tasks:
    • Task A:
    • Explain task to participant: They will be offered a stack of cards with names of biological concepts/entities (such as “Gene”, “Protein”, “BRCA1”) written on them, and we would like the participant to sort the cards in a way that makes sense to them. They will also be offered paper and pens, to allow them to sketch / make notes if they wish to, and additional blank cards if they feel like they need to add their own biological entities in addition to the ones that were provided to them.
    • Once the participant is done sorting and sketching if needed, ask them to explain how they reached the decisions they did. Participants are allowed to re-arrange their cards / re-draw their data model if they wish.
    • Ask participants which entities from the cards they think are the most important / interesting entities.
    • Task B:
    • Provide the participant with paper copies of common biological files such as FASTA and GFF3. Ask them to match certain parts of the file to the same entities found in the card sort.
  7. The participant will be asked if they have any further questions or comments.
  8. Once all queries and comments have been addressed, take still photos of the resulting sketches / card arrangements.

Invitation emails

To a third party, asking for them to help recruit

Hi (NAME HERE),

I’m running a study at the moment about the way people from different computational and biological backgrounds view biological data models, and I’m looking for volunteers. Participants are asked to spend 30 minutes to an hour (maximum) participating in a semi-structured interview, which will be recorded.

We’re looking for people who work with genomic and proteomic data, coming from a wet lab background, bioinformaticians, people a research software engineering background who work in a biological domain, or anyone who fits somewhere in between. Could you share this with anyone you think might be interested? I’ve also attached a poster you could print and attach to a noticeboard.

Anyone who is interested should contact Yo Yehudi at: yochannah.yehudi@postgrad.manchester.ac.uk

To a friend/acquaintance, asking them directly for help:

Hi (NAME HERE),

I’m running a study at the moment about the way people from different computational and biological backgrounds view biological data models, and I’m looking for volunteers. Participants are asked to spend 30 minutes to an hour (maximum) participating in a semi-structured interview, which will be recorded.

We’re looking for people who work with genomic and proteomic data, coming from a wet lab background, bioinformaticians, people a research software engineering background who work in a biological domain, or anyone who fits somewhere in between. I was wondering if you might be willing to participate?

<DELETE IF IRRELEVANT:> I think we’ll both be at - is there a time we might be able to meet?

Could you also share this with anyone you think might be interested? I’ve also attached a poster you could print and attach to a noticeboard.

### Sample tweets

Are you any of: - A wet lab biologist? - A bioinformatician - A research software engineer who works in a biological domain? I’m conducting research into how people create mental models of biological data - can I interview you? 30-60 minutes max. (In-person, Cambridge, UK)


#GCC attendees: I’m conducting research into how people create mental models of biological data, and y’all are a target audience of mine - do you have 30-60 minutes to spare for a semi-structured interview during a spare moment during / before/ after the conference?