A2 - Psychology - Ethical issues with using human participants

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Ethical Issues with using human particpants

Ethical issues

Defintion: These arise in research where there are conflicting sets of values concerning the goals, procedures or outcome of a reserach study.


Definition: This involves misleading or witholding the true aims and purpose of the study frm the parrticpant and their role in it.

Issue: This creates aa dilemma as some argue that it is morally and ethically wrong as it can lead to fuurther problems such as psychological harm. However, it is often necessay to avoid demmand characteristics.

Example: In Rosenhan`s study the hospital staff were deceived about the nature of the psuedopatients. This may have led them in future to be mistrustful of patients and therefore not offer the best treatment.

Informed Consent

Definition: Participants shoould have the right to agree or refuse to take prt based on full understading about the study they are being asked to take part in.

Issue: This is a particular issue in conducting observvational research or in case studies when an individual maybe very involved in the research for a period of time. It can also overlap with other ethical issues such as lack of right to withdraw.

Example: In Milgram study participants experrienced extreme disttress of arguablly did not have the oppurunity to decliine to take part. In studies where harm is not an issue ten informed consent is less an issue.

Right to withdraw

Definition: Participants should feel they are free to withdraw from a study at…


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