Is Prolific Legit or Scam? Know Before Prolific Survey Shocks You!

Welcome to my Prolific Survey review!

In this information age landing up on the wrong side of opportunities on the internet is something you have control over. My guess is that you’re searching for a decent side income stream and wondering whether Prolific is legit or scam.

First of all congratulations on doing your research and it’s no mistake that you’ve found yourself here. In this review, you’ll not only find the right answer to “Is Prolific Legit or Scam?” but will help you make an informed decision on whether Prolific surveys are worth your time as well.

My experience with how these systems work and being a victim of scams has taught me well to help others to escape from them. Let’s get started!

What Is Prolific About?

Product: Prolific

Founders: Ekaterina Damer, PhD & Phelim Bradley, PhD


Platform Type: Paid Research Survey

Cost: Your time ($0.00)

Best For: People interested in exchanging their free time for money or work at home Mom or Dad

Overall Rating: 8 out of 10

prolific review

Prolific is a crowdsourcing platform which brings researchers and participants together in one place. The birth of this platform came about when the co-founder, Katia had a frustrating time mobilising participants for her PhD research. The traditional approach She used was asking people from the streets to social media which to her couldn’t yield any results.

So out of necessity, Katia together with Phelim developed a crowdsourcing platform which could help not only them but people who face similar challenges finding success in their research. It went by the name “Prolific academic” when launched in 2014 until it was changed to Prolific a year after to make the brand simple and bold.

Basically, they help researchers to find the right information from participants of a target demographic by taking part in Prolific surveys to better study outcome. This comes with a cash reward for participants in exchange for their time and opinions shared.

They claim to have served 2000+ academics, startups, charities and businesses who have achieved great results. Can you really count on this? And can you earn a decent side income participating in the research studies? Let’s find out.

How Does Prolific Work?

The main work of Prolific is to connect researchers with participants. While researchers have the opportunity to collect data from diverse people across the world, it’s a side gig for participants who want to exchange information for cash rewards. So both parties get to benefit from it. Prolific is supported on mobile, tablet and desktop.

How Researcher Recruits Participants

The first step is to sign up which costs $0.00 and then set up your surveys or tasks that you need participants for. The procedure to get it done looks pretty simple;

#1. Integrate the survey tool you want to use for the studies on Prolific platform. This implies that Prolific doesn’t host your surveys on their platform but directs participants to your survey site.

#2. Add prescreen to qualify only participants who fit for the kind of data you want to collect.

#3. You’re now ready to collect data for your studies.

Prolific recommends that each participant is rewarded at least $6.5 with an additional 30% as a service charge but the call is yours to make on how much you want to pay participants. Find out more here.

How Do You Make Money As a Participant?

Prolific offers two main ways of earning: surveys and a referral program. You sign up for free with your basic information including name, country, date of birth and email.


This is the main feature of the Prolific surveys which earns you averagely $6.5 per participation provided your answers are approved. Upon signing up you’re given a demonstration study to have a feel of typical Prolific survey. Surveys are externally hosted on websites of researchers such as Gorilla, SurveyMonkey, Qualtrics, Typeform and others. You’re redirected to Prolific once the study is completed.

To be eligible for studies, you’re to complete the “About You” page which requests information ranging from basic demographic variables to mental health. This enables researchers to filter out participants not needed for their studies. To maintain anonymity you’re provided with an ID which you use for any studies.

After submission of the studies, you’re either given a completion code or redirected to Prolific website while you wait for the acceptance of your answers. You’re rewarded cash once the answers are not rejected by the researcher and it’s reflected in your account for cashout.

Referral Program

You make 10% on cashouts of participants or researchers you refer to Prolific website. The former will be phased out by March 14, 2019. However, the quota you earn on existing referrals will still be in effect until May 12, 2019. Therefore, participants are rather encouraged to refer more researchers.

How Much Money Can You Earn As a Participant?

Well, this depends on a number of factors not excluding the availability of research projects. Since the surveys are mostly academic studies, its availability is also affected by the academic calendar of universities. While I find the surveys in Prolific to be interesting than most surveys that ask questions like how much do you shop online and the likes, you can’t expect to be rich with this platform.

You can request for payment via PayPal when you reach a threshold of £5 which comes with a fee. However, waiting to accumulate £20 before withdrawal with Circle pay cuts down the administrative fee.

I like this survey site for the fact that you’re aiding scientific research which is a backbone of development. So if you’re moved by that then the payout should be a decent one for you but if you’re in for the money then trying out Respondent will be a good option to make averagely $140 per hour. You can as well donate the amount you earn to charity if your passion is to help people with their academic research.

Other than that, trying out Wealthy Affiliate will help you with financial freedom leveraging the internet.

Two Sides of The Coin

Prolific is definitely not a perfect system but participating in their surveys can be considered as a kind gesture to scientific exploration. Nonetheless, you have the right to know the two sides for your decision making.  


#1 It’s FREE to join

#2 The surveys are more interesting than most that are about market research

#3 You’re only provided surveys that you qualify

#4 You can directly contact sponsors of the survey in case of problems

#5 Comparatively high paying rates


#1. Limited payout options

#2. Surveys are fewer compared to others that use routers

#3. Cashout comes with a fee

Is Prolific a Scam or Legit?

Since its inception in 2014 till now, they’ve come a long way to prove themselves as legit so it will be harsh to conclude Prolific survey as a scam. While I will encourage you to give Prolific a try because of my personal motivation to contribute to scientific studies, you might want to look elsewhere if money is your motivation.

Of course, I will not be the one paying the bills so having more options to Prolific surveys like PointsPrizes, Clixsense, Surveytime, TimeBucks will be a good idea if taking a survey is your thing. Chances are that you’ll love Respondent and these best websites that pay you to test websites if you’re good to go with surveys.

However, there are other evergreen options to make passive income with the internet if you’re interested in that.

Is Prolific Worth Your Time? An Evergreen Alternative!

If you don’t mind exchanging your spare time with few dollars, then this side gig platform is a nice place to be because the surveys are very interesting. However, it will be a waste of time or worthless for you if your main aim is to fall on something that will generate you income now and some time to come. Prolific can’t be that platform because your active work and persistence can make you only $5 – $28 working months.

This is the reason why building my own online business is worth the time. It’s has not only helped me to generate consistent income but has cured “cancer of my wallet”. The hard work I put into it translates into the income I make. I learnt how to do it through a group called Wealthy Affiliate. They taught me how to make passive income with affiliate marketing and I’m doing just fine.

You can check up on why I recommend it as a good platform to start your very own online business. Just to give you evidence that the training works, below is a snapshot of the income I started making in my first four months whiles learning the process. 

The amazing thing is that you can test the platform for FREE with all the state-of-the-art tools for 7 days before making any decision. NO CREDIT CARD!

Follow me to the training and I will be there not only to welcome you but help you with my experience to succeed. Put your credit card away and start for FREE here!

Over To You

Do you have any experience with Prolific survey? Feel free to share them in the comment box below and I will appreciate it so much. I’m always ready to connect with you if you have any questions.   

I hope you’ve gathered some insights here and until then, do make a good decision.

                             Share it, if you like it! 🙂

Your friend, 


4 thoughts on “Is Prolific Legit or Scam? Know Before Prolific Survey Shocks You!”

  1. It’s definitely more profitable than avenues like ClixSense, Tellwut, and others like it, but it’s still nothing more than a side gig. That said, up to $28-$30 a month isn’t bad, and can provide some extra money to spend on something like a nice dinner per month or something of an identical nature. I like what I’ve read here, and the fact that it’s more in the avenue of academic research definitely makes for a more interesting platform as well. Wouldn’t be a bad program to give a shot, but it’s definitely nowhere near full-time income. 

    • Hi Todd, 

      It’s a great way to contribute to academic so you shouldn’t expect to earn much here. However, if your interest is to make a full-time income, then this recommendation would be of great value to you. 

      I hope it’s helpful? 

  2. This was an interesting post and one that I will pass on to my colleague who is between job and looking for some ways to make some income while he waits for the next regular job to start. The more I read about your review of the Prolific platform the more I liked what it offers.

    As you say, this is not going to make you a bundle of money, but it sure sounds okay to me that you are earning and helping researchers out too. That is a platform I can support. The pay is not a lot, and I am wondering how long the surveys take to complete (i.e. 30 minutes, 1 hour, or more?). 

    It is true that there are other sites too that are similar where you can earn more, but in general, I agree with you that if you want to develop some steady income, you need to quit trading time for money, and build an online business where you are trading time for money month after month. 

    This Prolific site is one I can pass on and also recommend. Thanks for the heads up and most assuredly, there will be many people that appreciate your efforts to point out the good and the bad options that there are to make money online, as you are doing on this website.


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