Language, Informed Consent, and Inclusivity in Medical Research and Practice

Language, Informed Consent, and Inclusivity in Medical Research and Practice

The UCL Centre for Applied Linguistics & IC4CH invite you to ‘Language, Informed Consent, and Inclusivity in Medical Research and Practice'

About this event

It is well-established that certain groups – for example poorer, immigrant, indigenous, and ethnic minority communities – in the population are under-recruited in clinical trials and their health needs underrepresented in medical research and practice. This has been particularly highlighted over the last two pandemic years. The reasons for this inequality are complex and systemic, but one element is the linguistic and cultural competence of patients and clinicians: from the demands of explaining and understanding complex information, to how (perceived) language ability is used to in/exclude. These problems are particularly salient in multicultural societies around the world, such as Hong Kong, Australia and the UK.

In this webinar, experts from Hong Kong, Australia and the UK will discuss some of the linguistic issues around inclusion and informed consent in medical research and practice and how these manifest in specific examples from Hong Kong, Australia and the UK. We will touch on

  • the language demands of informed consent documents in medical trials
  • informed consent-in-interaction in multicultural genetic counselling consultations involving minors
  • the translation of informed consent documents into multiple languages
  • the impact of the ‘must speak English’ criterion on recruitment to medical trials
  • the inadvertent exclusion of target groups from medical research

The panel discussion will be followed by discussions with our audience where we hope to gain further insights into related concerns and possible solutions from around the world.

Chair: Prof. Lorraine Noble, University College London


Dr Zsofia Demjen, University College London
Dr Talia Isaacs, University College London
Prof. Christine Phillips, Australian National University
Dr Olga Zayts, University of Hong Kong

You can register for the event hereA link to the event will be sent to all registered participants a few days before the webinar. Automatic captions will be available. Due to the potential sensitivity of the topic, the event will not be recorded.

The UCL Centre for Applied Linguistics is a partner in the International Consortium for Communication in Healthcare (IC4CH), an international, interdisciplinary collaborative dedicated to translating cutting-edge research into best practice and training for safe and compassionate health care. Other IC4CH member organisations are the Australian National University, Nanyang Technological University, Lancaster University, the University of Hong Kong and Queensland University of Technology. 

Date & time

Wed 07 Jul 2021, 9–10.30pm


Online event


Ashley Thomson


Updated:  15 June 2021/Responsible Officer:  Head of School/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications