This jargon buster or glossary of words contains the definitions of some of the terms commonly used in public involvement in research. It is not a complete list of all the words you might come across. The definitions were developed for INVOLVE by TwoCan Associates working in consultation with a panel of researchers and a panel of people who use services.
The jargon buster can be searched by clicking on one of the letters below or browsing all terms.
Members of the public (or public)
INVOLVE uses this term to cover:
• patients and potential patients
• people who use health and social care services
• informal (unpaid) carers
• disabled people
• members of the public who are potential recipients of health promotion programmes, public health programmes, and social service interventions
• groups asking for research because they believe they have been exposed to potentially harmful substances or products (for example pesticides or asbestos)
• organisations that represent people who use services.
Other organisations have different definitions of this term.
A mentor is a person willing to share their experience, knowledge and wisdom to help, guide and support someone who is less experienced. Mentors act as friends, teachers and advisers. A person who is newly involved in research can ask for a mentor to help them adjust to their new role.
The term methodology describes how research is done – so it will cover how information is collected and analysed as well as why a particular method has been chosen.
Monitoring research involves keeping up to date with the progress of a research project. This will include ensuring that the researchers are carrying out their research according to their research proposal or protocol, that the research is keeping to time and budget and that the research is being conducted ethically.