BRL Standard

Conduct research

Our facilities and software are suitable for a wide range of studies.

Researchers can conduct a variety of studies including computer-based surveys, tasks or games and discussion-based experiments or focus groups.
Who can use the BL?

The BL is open for use by LSE staff, LSE PhD students and external bodies at an hourly usage cost.

LSE Master's students can be nominated by their supervisors for lab usage at no charge. MSc funding opportunities are available.

Unfortunately use of the BL is not permitted for LSE undergraduate students. 

The use of our participant database and recruitment tools are not permitted for studies hosted outside the BL.

Commercial organisations are not permitted to use the BL facilities unless in  collaboration with LSE staff.

What does it cost to use the BL?

Researchers should budget for both the BL’s hourly rate and participant payments when planning on running in the BL. The BL’s hourly rate is £170 for research supported by grants and participants are generally paid £5 for a 30 minute study or £10 for a 60 minute study.

If you need a cash advance from a LSE account, please follow the instructions on the Cash Advance Form (PDF). Please be aware that this process can take up to two weeks. Please see the ‘Budgeting’ section below for further information. 

When is the BL available?

The BL is open from 9.30am-5.30pm Monday to Friday. Lab studies should begin no earlier than 10.00am and finish by 5.00pm in order to allow enough time to set up and shut down the lab's facilities. We have several rooms, so depending on your needs you may be able to run a study at the same time as another researcher.

Should all your available days be blocked please inform the BL about the date, time and facility you intended to book. 

In the event of scheduling conflicts, consideration will given to research bringing funding to the BL, Department of Management researchers, and those who have had prior use of the lab.

Step-by-step guide to using the BL

In order to facilitate a smooth research project, all researchers should prepare their projects and experiments in detail; budget for participant payments, booking fees and (where appropriate) lab usage costs; apply for ethical approval and subsequently hand in the BL booking form. Please find below more information to each of these sections. 

1. Preparing and designing your study

The BL is a versatile space for researchers, so it can be used to conduct a wide range of behavioural studies. As our facilities include a large computer lab, 4 meeting rooms, and an observation room, researchers can use the space to conduct a variety of studies including computer-based surveys, tasks or games and discussion-based experiments or focus groups, for example.

If you would like to discuss your possibilities of using the BL facilities or research design with, please get in touch

For researchers that are new to conducting behavioural research, please refer to our recommended resources:

Please see the BL’s facilities and software pages for information on the rooms, equipment and software available in the BL.

If you are a student working with an external organisation, you may also want to use our letter to contact organisations template (PDF).

2. Budgeting

Researchers should budget for both the BL’s hourly rate and participant payments when planning on running in the BL.

BL Hourly Rate:

 LSE Staff

 £170 per hour (where applicable)

 LSE Students

 only via nomination 

 External Organisations

 £170 per hour

LSE staff can communicate with the research division regarding grand applications to cover the BL usage costs. Please contact the Research Development Team (of Research Division) at or the BRL for information on budgeting lab time in your application.

These costs are only for lab time. They do not include other research-related costs such as materials and participant payments (see below).

The hourly charge does not apply to PhD or MSc students, and will not apply to lab time spent testing and setting up.

Participant Payments:

Generally, participants receive £5 for 30 minute and £10 for 60 minute studies. Some studies deviate from this (are longer or have variable payment), but it usually works out to be at least £10 per hour.

To withdraw funds from a LSE account, please use the BL's Cash Advance Form (PDF) and allow up to two weeks to obtain the funds.

 3. Obtaining ethics approval

All studies taking place with the BL (lab-based and online) must be approved by the BL's research ethics approval procedure. Please refer to the BL Research Ethics Handbook and complete the online ethics application form.

For projects with no significant ethical implications, your application for ethics approval will be reviewed within 1 week (during term time).

Please note that any project involving an element of deception, ethical implications beyond what the BL Ethics Committee is able to approve, or vulnerable populations will need to be reviewed by the LSE Research Ethics Committee. Please see the Research Ethics Committee page for information on their decision-making timeframe.

When completing the BL's online ethics application form, all researchers will be asked to submit a brief description of the participants and procedure that will be used in your study and to attach a copy of your participant information sheet, consent form, and debriefing sheet. For projects that may have ethical implications, researchers will be asked for additional details. Please see the online ethics application form for full details.

If you would like templates for the above forms, please see the appendices of the BL Research Ethics Handbook.

4. Making a booking and recruiting participants

After reviewing and completing steps 1 - 3 above, you are ready to make your booking in the BL!

To do this, please complete the BL Booking Form. This will give us more information on the study you intend run, ensures you provide us with the paperwork we need and enables you to make any specific requests. If Research Assistants are needed for your study, you’ll be asked for some additional details and we can advertise a post for you.

After submitting the BL Booking Form, the Behaviour Lab Projects Administrator will create a researcher account for you and add your study in Sona (our participant sign-up system). You will then be able to review and edit your study.

Before conducting your sessions, you should arrange to test the software you'll be using for your study. Lab time can be arranged for this with the Behaviour Lab Projects Administrator.

Finally, once you are ready to recruit participants for your study, we can use Sona to invite participants to take part in your study. We maintain a large participant database of around 2,000 contacts who have expressed an interest in participating in paid research, consisting primarily of LSE students and staff, but also those from surrounding universities as well as members of the public. We are happy to recruit participants for BL studies through our database provided each participant is paid as outlined above.


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Contact us


BL team: +44 (0) 20 7955 6059


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LSE Behavioural Lab for Teaching and Research, Lower Ground Floor, Clement House, 99-101 Aldwych, London WC2B 4JF