Ethical Costs vs Scientific Benefits

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  • Ethical Costs vs Scientific Benefits
    • Johnson's 'Monster Study'
      • 22 orphans subject to either positive reinforcement or negative criticism for their school progress
        • Scientific Benefits:
          • demonstrates how children react to either positive or negative learning
            • HOWEVER
              • applied to education so children can learn in the best way possible
          • applied to education so children can learn in the best way possible
        • Ethical Costs
          • vulnerable participants
            • HOWEVER
              • no informed consent
              • long term psychological harm - some retained speech problems for the rest of their life
              • •The sample was small at only 22 and all the children were orphans. They have already had a difficult start in life which could have affected their development and the way they respond to criticism.
            • no informed consent
          • long term psychological harm - some retained speech problems for the rest of their life
          • not aware of right to withdraw
    • David Reimer
      • at 8 months old his penis was badly burnt - Dr. Money decided that he could be raised as a girl since he firmly believed that gender identity was an outcome of environmental factors
        • Bruce became Brenda but found out truth when 15yo
          • when he was 38 David committed suicide after suffering from years of depression
            • Scientific benefits
              • Gender identity CANNOT be learnt - it is biological
                • HOWEVER
            • Ethical Costs
              • didn't recieve sufficient therapy
              • only 8 months - unaware of study so no right to withdraw
                • HOWEVER
                  • no informed consent
                  • long term psychological harm
                  • •This was a case study and therefore any findings only relate to this unique individual case and shouldn’t be generalised to everyone.
              • no informed consent
              • long term psychological harm
    • Landis
      • tested to see if we have universal facial expressions by subjecting ppts to carious stimuli that would produce a strong reaction
        • E.g. smell ammonia, look at pornography and put hand in bucket of frogs
          • then told to kill rat by beheading it
            • 1/3 refused so Landis did it for them
              • Scientific Benefits
                • if proven correct it could establish universal facial expressions
                  • no one could lie in court
                  • HOWEVER
                    • no one could lie in court
                    • Lab experiment – artificial setting – lacks ecological validity. Also participants may have shown demand characteristics therefore lacking in internal validity also.    
              • Ethical costs
                • right to withdraw
                • animal abuse
                • psychological harm
                • informed consent
                • HOWEVER
                  • right to withdraw
                  • animal abuse
    • Intro
      • Double obligation Dilemma
        • ensure ppts leave study in the same state as to which they entered
          • Need to find balance
            • seek and share knowledge which will better the human race
        • seek and share knowledge which will better the human race

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