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Sample Cover Letter for Use with Mailed Surveys

Required Elements:  Name and address of principal investigator; title, purpose of study; time requirement; risks and benefits; certify legal age for consent; requirements to give consent to participate, right of refusal to answer questions or to participate in survey at all; and assurance of anonymity/confidentiality.

Dr. Mary Smith

Department of Education

West Texas A&M University

Canyon, TX 79016


RE: Survey questionnaire

Dear Educator:

Enclosed in this mailing you will find a questionnaire which I am requesting you to fill out.  I am conducting a study entitled, "Secondary Teachers Perceptions of Special Education."  The purpose of this study is to investigate secondary teachers perceptions of and attitudes toward special education students, teachers, and programs.  It takes about 20 minutes to complete the questionnaire.

It is important for you to understand that while the direct personal risks and/or benefits of your participation in this study are minimal, your contribution will help provide meaningful information to increase our understanding of how teachers perceive special education and to better coordinate special education programs within secondary schools as a whole.

Please note that by filling out this survey and returning the questionnaire in the enclosed envelop, you are certifying that you are at least 18 years old and you are giving your free and voluntary consent to be a participant in this study.  You are, of course, free to choose not to participate and you have the right to refuse to answer any particular question for whatever reason without prejudice.  However, I ask that you carefully answer as many of the questions as possible.  All your responses will remain anonymous **.  All research reports will only contain data in forms that do not permit individual responses to be identified. If you choose not to participate in this study, please discard the enclosed materials.

Let me thank you in advance for the time and effort required to fill out the questionnaire and to assure you that your participation is greatly appreciated.


Dr. Mary Smith

427 OM, WTAMU BOX 296

Canyon, TX 79016

Phone : (806) 656-2594

Email: msmith@mail.wtamu.edu

** If researcher will be able to identify subjects, use the term "confidential"

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