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Conduct research

Our facilities and software are suitable for a wide range of studies both online and in-lab.

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 non-LSE researchers.

Master's and undergraduate students can be nominated by their supervisors for lab usage, who must also confirm they are able to provide support throughout the project. The student should also provide a research proposal.

PhD students also require nomination from their supervisors.

What does it cost to use the BL?

LSE students and staff (not conducting grant-funded research) can use the lab for free. They need only pay for participant costs when conducting studies at the BL. 

Researchers external to LSE and LSE researchers who conduct grant-funded/sponsored research need to pay/budget for participant costs, as well as BL cost. The BL’s hourly rate starts at £28.95 and participants are generally paid £5 per 30 minutes. 

When is the BL available?

The BL is open from 9:30am-5:30pm, Monday to Friday. In-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 and Departemnt of Psychological and Behavioural Sciences 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. We have online capabilities to run remote studies using our software. Our physical facilities include a large computer lab, four 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.

PhD, Master's and Undergraduate students are required to get your supervisor's declaration of support for you.  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:

Use of BL space


Participant set up and management


Use of specific software/ hardware

Various (contact BL team)

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 BL for information on budgeting lab time in your application.

Participant Payments:

Generally, participants receive £5 for 30 minutes, which the participant will receive upon completion of the study. Studies that take less than 15 minutes can use lottery payment for a larger size. If the study parameters require it, participants can be paid extra via a lottery or depending on their choices during the study, on top of their required payment amount. Online studies will pay via online vouchers and in-lab studies will pay in cash, unless otherwise specified.

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 (in-lab and online) must be approved by the LSE research ethics approval procedure. Please refer to the BL Research Ethics Handbook and complete the online LSE ethics application form here (for LSE individuals) or contact the BL team if you are external to LSE.

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). 

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 ~4,000 participants, representative of central London demographics, as the lab is located in central London, and comprises of both LSE staff, students and local workers or residents. The quality of participants is maintained by upholding participants to regulations upon which they agree when signing up to Sona. 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


BL team:


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