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Describe and discuss two ethical issues that have arisen in empirical studies of obedience.

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Introduction

P.11 d) Describe and discuss two ethical issues that have arisen in empirical studies of obedience. (10 marks) In Hofling's study of obedience in nurse which is aim to see if nurses would obey an order from a doctor that breached hospital regulations and was contrary to safe practice. An unwitting nurse-participant received a phone call from an unknown doctor who asked her to administer a drug called Astroten so that it could take effect before he arrived. If the nurse obeyed, she would be breaking a number of hospital rules administering a drug that was not on the ward list for the day and it can be harmless to the patients. ...read more.

Middle

It is necessary because the nurse will fell stress as they know that over amount of Astroten is harmless to the patients, they might not feel comfortable of doing that. Therefore, they should have the right to withdraw if the experiment makes them upset. As this specific action is unethical, it might cause a psychological harm to the nurses because they have to struggle whether obey or not in such a pressure. In Milgram's study of obedience is to find out if ordinary Americans would obey an unjust order to inflict pain on another person. The experimenter is asking the participants to give a shock to the participant next to the room when he gets the answer incorrectly. ...read more.

Conclusion

Also, confederates were involved in the study too, therefore, it is a kind of deception. The second ethical issue is debriefing allows the researcher to obtain inform consent retrospectively and put right any deception that took place. The deception and aims are explained and participants also have the right to withdraw their results. It is as if the participants never took part in the study in the first place. Milgram fully debriefed his participant and had the opportunity to withdraw their result. However, by this stage they had already been subjected to the stress of the experiment. But it is questionable if debriefing puts right the deception and the guilt of knowing one was prepared to give electric shocks strong enough to kill a person. ...read more.

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