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Trial registered on ANZCTR


Registration number
ACTRN12621000375853p
Ethics application status
Submitted, not yet approved
Date submitted
7/07/2020
Date registered
1/04/2021
Date last updated
1/04/2021
Date data sharing statement initially provided
1/04/2021
Type of registration
Prospectively registered

Titles & IDs
Public title
Randomised controlled trial of a brief e-mental health program with Australian university students
Scientific title
Randomised controlled trial of the effect of a brief e-mental health program on symptoms of mental health problems in Australian university students.
Secondary ID [1] 301716 0
None
Universal Trial Number (UTN)
Trial acronym
Linked study record

Health condition
Health condition(s) or problem(s) studied:
depression 318168 0
anxiety 318169 0
psychological distress 318170 0
Condition category
Condition code
Mental Health 316185 316185 0 0
Depression
Mental Health 316186 316186 0 0
Anxiety
Mental Health 316503 316503 0 0
Other mental health disorders

Intervention/exposure
Study type
Interventional
Description of intervention(s) / exposure
The intervention is a brief video-based e-mental health intervention that consists of 12 modules targeting the common mechanisms that underlie mental health problems in university students (e.g. low mood and negative thinking styles, worry/anxiety, procrastination, sleep problems). Each module consists of a brief video (transcript will be available through a link) followed by an exercise to practice the therapeutic technique that is described. An example of an exercise is a thought diary or a guided relaxation exercise. Two modules of the program will be e-mailed to participants during each week of the intervention period (6 weeks). The e-mail will also contain a link to a self-monitoring quiz (e.g. brief anxiety screener or procrastination screener) for participants to track their symptoms (2-5 mins). Self-monitoring quizzes include the PHQ-9, GAD-7, Westside exam anxiety scale, The Sleep Condition Indicator, The Almost Perfect Scale – Revised, The Procrastination Scale. The duration of each module is approximately 5 minutes. The modules are self-administered one-on-one via an e-mailed video, and can be accessed at a participants' location of choice. The videos contained in each module were developed specifically for this study. Adherence to the intervention will be monitored via video analytics and self-report questionnaire.
Intervention code [1] 318016 0
Treatment: Other
Comparator / control treatment
Participants allocated to the attention control condition will receive a weekly e-mail containing information on health topics not related to mental health. Example topics include: effects of sun exposure, how to keep your bones healthy. The modules are self-administered one-on-one via an e-mailed PDF, and can be accessed at a participants' location of choice. 12 modules of approximately 5 minutes duration will be administered.
Control group
Placebo

Outcomes
Primary outcome [1] 324364 0
Depression symptoms - PHQ-9
Timepoint [1] 324364 0
Baseline (pre-intervention commencement), post-intervention (at 6 weeks - primary timepoint), 3 months post intervention, and 6 months post intervention
Primary outcome [2] 324365 0
Anxiety symptoms - GAD-7
Timepoint [2] 324365 0
Baseline (pre-intervention commencement), post-intervention (at 6 weeks - primary timepoint), 3 months post intervention, and 6 months post intervention
Secondary outcome [1] 384451 0
Help seeking - General Help-seeking Questionnaire
Timepoint [1] 384451 0
Baseline, 6 weeks post baseline, 3 months post intervention, 6 months post intervention
Secondary outcome [2] 384452 0
Quality of life - EURO-HIS
Timepoint [2] 384452 0
Baseline, 6 weeks post baseline, 3 months post intervention, 6 months post intervention
Secondary outcome [3] 384453 0
Self-efficacy - Academic Self-Efficacy Scale
Timepoint [3] 384453 0
Baseline, 6 weeks post baseline, 3 months post intervention, 6 months post intervention
Secondary outcome [4] 386451 0
Social Anxiety Disorder Screener
Timepoint [4] 386451 0
Baseline, 6 weeks post baseline, 3 months post intervention, 6 months post intervention
Secondary outcome [5] 386452 0
General Self-Efficacy Scale (GSE-10)
Timepoint [5] 386452 0
Baseline, 12 weeks post baseline, 3 months post intervention, 6 months post intervention
Secondary outcome [6] 386453 0
Satisfaction (designed specifically for study)
Timepoint [6] 386453 0
Baseline, 6 weeks post baseline, 3 months post intervention, 6 months post intervention
Secondary outcome [7] 393553 0
Functioning (Re-QOL)
Timepoint [7] 393553 0
Baseline, 6 weeks post baseline, 3 months post intervention, 6 months post intervention
Secondary outcome [8] 393554 0
Psychological distress (DQ-5)
Timepoint [8] 393554 0
Baseline, 6 weeks post baseline, 3 months post intervention, 6 months post intervention
Secondary outcome [9] 393555 0
Wellbeing (WHO-5)
Timepoint [9] 393555 0
Baseline, 6 weeks post baseline, 3 months post intervention, 6 months post intervention

Eligibility
Key inclusion criteria
Aged 18 years or older
Current student of an Australian university
Currently residing in Australia
Elevated psychological distress (score of 8-17 on DQ-5)
Minimum age
18 Years
Maximum age
No limit
Gender
Both males and females
Can healthy volunteers participate?
No
Key exclusion criteria
No/mild psychological distress (score of less than 8 on DQ-5)
High/severe psychological distress (score of greater than 17 on DQ-5)
Diagnosis of bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, PTSD or a personality disorder and not currently receiving professional support

Study design
Purpose of the study
Treatment
Allocation to intervention
Randomised controlled trial
Procedure for enrolling a subject and allocating the treatment (allocation concealment procedures)
Randomisation will be conducted by a researcher not involved with the trial.
Methods used to generate the sequence in which subjects will be randomised (sequence generation)
A researcher who is independent of the trial will generate a sequence of random integers between the values of 1 and 2 at https://www.random.org/, and manually allocate participants to the trial conditions according to this sequence.
Masking / blinding
Open (masking not used)
Who is / are masked / blinded?



Intervention assignment
Parallel
Other design features
Phase
Not Applicable
Type of endpoint(s)
Efficacy
Statistical methods / analysis

Recruitment
Recruitment status
Not yet recruiting
Date of first participant enrolment
Anticipated
Actual
Date of last participant enrolment
Anticipated
Actual
Date of last data collection
Anticipated
Actual
Sample size
Target
Accrual to date
Final
Recruitment in Australia
Recruitment state(s)
ACT,NSW,NT,QLD,SA,TAS,WA,VIC

Funding & Sponsors
Funding source category [1] 306153 0
Charities/Societies/Foundations
Name [1] 306153 0
Australian Rotary Health
Address [1] 306153 0
2nd Floor, 43 Hunter Street,
Parramatta NSW 2150
Country [1] 306153 0
Australia
Primary sponsor type
Individual
Name
Louise Farrer
Address
63 Eggleston Rd
The Australian National University
Canberra ACT 2601
Country
Australia
Secondary sponsor category [1] 306622 0
Individual
Name [1] 306622 0
Philip Batterham
Address [1] 306622 0
63 Eggleston Rd
The Australian National University
Canberra ACT 2601
Country [1] 306622 0
Australia

Ethics approval
Ethics application status
Submitted, not yet approved
Ethics committee name [1] 306370 0
Australian National University Human Research Ethics Committee
Ethics committee address [1] 306370 0
48A Geography Building
The Australian National University
Canberra ACT 2601
Ethics committee country [1] 306370 0
Australia
Date submitted for ethics approval [1] 306370 0
14/07/2020
Approval date [1] 306370 0
Ethics approval number [1] 306370 0

Summary
Brief summary
This project is a randomised controlled trial of a brief video-based e-mental health intervention designed to improve the mental health of university students. Students from all universities in Australia will be recruited and randomised to one of two conditions, an intervention condition in which participants will receive bi-weekly e-mails containing brief video-based modules containing health information and strategies for a period of 6 weeks, or an attention control condition, in which they will receive bi-weekly e-mails containing health information (not related to mental health) for a period of 6 weeks. Participants will complete outcome assessments at baseline, post-intervention, and 3 and 6 months post intervention. Outcome measures include depressive symptoms, anxiety symptoms, psychological distress, academic self-efficacy, quality of life, help seeking behaviour, engagement and satisfaction with the intervention.
Trial website
Trial related presentations / publications
Public notes

Contacts
Principal investigator
Name 103642 0
Dr Louise Farrer
Address 103642 0
63 Eggleston Rd
The Australian National University
Canberra ACT 2601
Country 103642 0
Australia
Phone 103642 0
+61 2 6125 8859
Fax 103642 0
Email 103642 0
louise.farrer@anu.edu.au
Contact person for public queries
Name 103643 0
Dr Louise Farrer
Address 103643 0
63 Eggleston Rd
The Australian National University
Canberra ACT 2601
Country 103643 0
Australia
Phone 103643 0
+61 2 6125 8859
Fax 103643 0
Email 103643 0
louise.farrer@anu.edu.au
Contact person for scientific queries
Name 103644 0
Dr Louise Farrer
Address 103644 0
63 Eggleston Rd
The Australian National University
Canberra ACT 2601
Country 103644 0
Australia
Phone 103644 0
+61 2 6125 8859
Fax 103644 0
Email 103644 0
louise.farrer@anu.edu.au

Data sharing statement
Will individual participant data (IPD) for this trial be available (including data dictionaries)?
Yes
What data in particular will be shared?
De-identified individual participant data underlying published results
When will data be available (start and end dates)?
For 5 years following publication of research outputs
Available to whom?
Case by case basis at the discretion of the primary sponsor
Available for what types of analyses?
IPD meta-analyses and other purposes at the discretion of the primary sponsor
How or where can data be obtained?
Access subject to approval by Principal Investigator (louise.farrer@anu.edu.au)
What supporting documents are/will be available?
No other documents available
Summary results
No Results