issues and debates



the ethical guidelines are-

no psychological harm

-gain informed consent

-avoidance of deception

-no phsyical harm

-right to withdraw

-keep confidentiality 

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ethical implications and social sensitivity

seiber and stanley- defined socially sensitve research as 'studies which there are potential consequences or implications direclty for pp in research OR individuals represented by research' 

4 aspects in research where social consequcnes occur- 

1 research question- questions may be damaging to paticular group as appear to add scientific credibility to issues e.g arthur jenson "are white people smarter than black people"

2 conduct of research and treatment of pp- main ethical issue is confidentiality. eg. if a person confesses to a crime should their confidentiality be kept? 

3 institutional context- research can be funded by private institutions which could lead to miss use of data or misinterpretation e.g drug company bias when finding whether a drug eases symptoms 

4 intepretation and application of finding research may be used for purpose other than intended- e.g crime linked to gentics -70,000 women were sterilised due to minor crimes not comitted 

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evaluation of socially sensitive research

- psychologists have a duty to conduct research on socially sensitive topics even if they are confidential 

- disadvantage to marginalised groups as often a failure to include representative sample from people with disablity or elderly 

- engaging wih policy makers, taking responsibility with what happens to findings 

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10 ethical issues relating to socially sensitive r

1 privacy- during research, skilled investigaor may extract more info than indended, leading to invasion of persons private life e.g home office 

2 confidentiality- pp may not be willing to divulge info in future if confidentialty is breached e.g home office 

3 valid methodology- if been poor metholdology scientist may be aware but not media and public meaning poor studies shape social policy e.g arthur jenson 

4 deception- include self deception where research may lead to from untrue stereotypes e.g women poor at maths lead to self fulfilling prophecy e.g asch

5 informed consent- pp may not be able to comprehend what is involved in research e.g milgram

6 equitable treatment- pp should be treated equally and resources that are vitsl to pp wellbeing e.g drugs not withheld e.g ocd treatment

7 scientific freedom- obligation not harm pp or institutions in society e.g harlow

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10 ethical issues relating to socially sensitive r

8 ownership of data- involves sponsership and who is funding research e.g. unversites etc are rhe public able to access the data

9  values- type of research method does researcher value? a sensitive issue may arise when there is a clash between scientist and person recieveing research e.g arthur jenson

10 risk/ benefit ratio- risk and cost should be minimalised but the may be difficult to predict e.g drug therapy 

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nature vs nurture debate

if an approach is an extreme of either sidce e.g fully nature (biological) or nurture (behaviourist) then it comes with a critisism

  david reimer useful for this debate

(reseachers use to believe only in 1 side of the view or the other)

nature view- extreme belivers called nativism. argue behaviour occurs as a result of genetic, phsyiological or hormonal reasons alone- traits given at conception through genes from parents

nurture view- argue traits e.g intelligence or gender are shaped bv enviromental influences such as parentng style or media influences (behaviourist most extreme , skinner, pavlov, phobias) 

david reimer support nature view as accident occured so raised him as a girl which he didnt want to be, showing that his biological genes over ruled upbringing 

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nature nurture views cont

modern view- interactionisty view e.g nature and nurture interact to produce given trait

e.g PKU- genetic condition tested through blood (nature) BUT only expressed if eat certain protein and get brain damage (nurture) this is interactionist as its nature and nurture 

importance of interactionism- 

constructivism-  nature creates nurture e.g change environment based on our nature so cannot seperate nature vs nurture... basketball plays born tall but choose to play basketball

epigenetics- genes switch on or off- due to interac tion with environment and can be passed through generations- nurture is inherited.  (schizophrenia and stress causing dna mutation)

methods of investigating nvn debate

twin studies (mz) if high concordance rate so nature must be invloved if low concordance nurture play a part.

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freewill v determinism

freewill- reject influences (biological insticts) which drive behaviour. you can choose how to behave- only humanistic appoach believe in freewill- hard to objectivley test freewill

determinism- behaviour is affected by range of influences outside of our concious control- we have no choice on how we behave 

libet 1985- ask pp to flex wrist - reseacher compare when said 'now' with whrn brain tirgger movement- concious choice occur after brain trigger signal for movement- freewill is an illusion- brain determines when we act without being consiousiously aware. 

eval freewill- + people and society belive have freewill e.g belive criminals should be punished for behaviour. if feel freewill challenged often display reactance this show we DO have a choice.

- free will goes agasint basic law of science- if have choice cant have hypothesis. psychologist mostly determinsitc in view as try to predict/ control behaviour. people with mental disorders show that not alweayds have choice e,g schizophrenics dont chose to hear voices

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soft determinism- 'behaviour free from force but does have a cuase such as persons concious, desired goals' - make voluntary influences in behvaiour but influence will reflect other factors. 

hard determinism- 'freewill is an illusion, beviour is casues by events (external or internal) which is an outside a persons concious control' - behaviour completely predicitable if understand factor behind it. 

types of hard determinism-                                                                                                               biological- genetic and brain actively determine our behaviour (internal determinism) e.g melotonin-sleep. - topic which highlight bio determinism is endocrine system.                                  psychic- freud belived freewill is illusion- beh determined by internal forces e.g id/eros/libido/repessed childhood experinces e.g anna O repress anger to dad arm not move- little hans phobia.                                                                                                                                                 environmental-determinded by pressure from outside e.g reinforcement/expectation of others. (external determinsim) 

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determinism eval

+ works well with cause and effect as allows for hypothesis meaning we should be able to predicy and control behaviour e.g schzophrenics determined by hgh levels of dopamine so given drugs. however impossible to understand interaction of every factor e.g not every schizophreniic react to drugs

- issues of moral responsiblity- behaviour has cause is it outside of control meaning we should not blame or punish people

- ethical issues and biological determined- ethical issues with determinsm e.g criminals behaviour used to mass sterilize inidviduals- compulsory mass sterilsation of 70,000 femlaes in usa in 1931- women who were identitifed as habituual criminals and feeble minded

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reductionism v holism

reductionism- scientifc view complex beh can be explained by reducing to simple structure of process

biological reductionism- reduce us to hormones, genes and neurons (memory, pku, ocd, schizophrenia)

enviromental reductionism- stimuli and response (pavlov, skinner, phobias)

+ of reductionism- allow to look in detial at components that effect behaviour. e.g isolating iv and dv allow experimental testing- parsimoniuous (scientific)

used to explain certain types of beh and disorders, pku reduced to defective genotype

- over simpligy complex beh by breaking it down to complex phenomenons- leading to loss of validity. 

doesnt take consideration othere factoes effecting behaviout- if reductioism was correct and genes only factor- concordance rate be 100%- suggest other factors involved. 

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humans to be studied in their entirety with all different aspects of behaviour taken into account

humans are complex individuals who lose aspect of what makes them human when they are broken down into components

humanistic approach. belives in holism- humanistic psychologists belive an individual behaviour is connected to inner feelings and self image

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gender and culture in psychology

universality- idea we discover fact about human thinking and beh which apply to everyone regardless of differnces inupbringing and experinces- any theory developed should be objective and valuefree. 

bias- 1) researcher- dr money or zimbardo   2)the focus- arthur jenson    3)sample- milgram 

gender bias- view of nature of males/ females based on sterotypes rather than reality. 

3 factors- alpha bias- tendancy to exagerate difference between men and women (research which find differerence tend to be published but ones which dont are ignored) one consequence is 1 gender tends to be devalued- phsycodynamic approach- men experince oidepus complec (fear of castration) and women experience penis envy (electra complex) therefore men are morally superior due to stronger super ego.                                                                                     beta bias-tendency to igmnore or minimse difference between men and women. research carried out on men w assumption that women are the same. e.g fight / flight but women actually tend/befreind- consequences of beta is androcentrism- male beh is normal and women judged against it. or classed as abnormal

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gender and culture cont

culture bias- culture relativism- judging all people in terms of your own cultural assumptions- disotring your judgement 

e.g maslows heirchy of needs cant be applied to collectivist cultures- deviation from social norms is subjective

ethnocentricity- seeing things from the pov of ourself and social group, we evaluate others using standards and customs of our own culture we consider to be superior leading to discrimiation

imposed etic- research in 1 culture applied to all cultures if they dont behave accordingly their wrong e.g strange situation. 

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ideographic and nomothetic

nomothetic- tries to establish law about people which can be genralised to everyone.                       idographic- focus on studying indviduals who is seen as unique agent with unique life history (I = INDIVIDUAL)

nomothetic view- (beh and slt)     tries to be objective, genralise law to everyone, large group in research, use statistcal analysis, relies on quantitative data (exp, questionaires, controlled obsv)

examples of studies- miller, skinner, bandura

idographic view- (humanistic) studies indivduals seen as unique agent w unique life. gather info of feelings, beliefs and subjective experiences, argue individual and have to obtain full picture of life, gather qualitative data (case studies, unstructered interviews, diary studies), subjective. 

examples- david reimer, TAN, little hans, HM, anna O

modern view- complimentary- believe the 2 approaches conflict each other however now recognise both approaches have value by combining- best understanding of human beh

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