The Role of Nonverbal Communication Behaviors in Clinical Trial and Research Study Recruitment

Susan Morgan, Ashton Mouton, Aurora Occa, JoNell E Potter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Scopus citations

Abstract

Few studies have examined the communication behaviors of those who recruit for clinical trials and research studies, particularly of nonmedical professionals who often do the bulk of recruiting. This focus-group study of 63 recruiters analyzes the ways in which nonverbal communication behaviors support the process of recruitment, using the lens of communication accommodation theory. Results indicate that recruiters first “read” potential study participants’ nonverbal communication for clues about their state of mind, then use nonverbal communication to achieve a sense of convergence. Specific nonverbal communication behaviors were discussed by recruiters, including smiling, variations in the use of voice, adjusting body position, the appropriate use of physical touch, the management of eye contact, and the effect of clothing and physical appearance. Implications for recruitment practice are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalHealth Communication
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Jun 18 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Communication

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