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Ethics In Psychology

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Introduction

1. * Discuss ethical considerations in qualitative research. * Discuss ethical considerations related to research studies at the biological level of analysis. * Discuss ethical considerations in research into genetic influences on behaviour. * Discuss ethical considerations related to research studies at the cognitive level of analysis. * Discuss ethical considerations related to research studies at the sociocultural level of analysis. * Discuss cultural and ethical considerations in diagnosis (for example, cultural variation, stigmatization). 2. Ethics is an area of study which seeks to address questions about morality; that is, about concepts such as good and bad, right and wrong, justice, and virtue. 3. Ethics and psychology are intimately linked, inseparable concepts. Every psychological investigation is an ethically charged situation, as research often involves subjecting both human and animal participants to pain or embarrassment. In psychological experiments on human subjects, ethics are dictated by a series of guidelines that researchers must abide by, designed to minimize or eliminate any unnecessary discomfort. There are five major ethical principles detailed by the American Psychological Association: * Subjects must give informed consent (i.e they must voluntarily agree to and be aware of the contents of the experiment they are to participate in). * Subjects must be given adequate privacy and confidentiality in publishing the experiment's findings. * Subjects reserve the right to withdraw from the experiment if they so desire. * Subjects should be debriefed in the experiment's conclusion; if deception has been part of the procedure the nature and purpose of the deception should be explained. * The safety of the subjects should be of paramount importance and they should be provided with sufficient protection from harm or discomfort. ...read more.

Middle

Whether she is intentionally lying or suffering from stress-induced hysteria, it is verging on ridiculous to accept her claims that her limbs were manually dislocated to enforce a sense of helplessness or that doctors sexually assaulted her and applied electrical shock to her genital region. A quick internet search for "MKULTRA survivor testimonies" will reveal several other, usually older female, individuals who claim that MKULTRA was among other things a front for an international prostitution ring and secretly led by the Illuminati. For most people emerging from the MKULTRA programs, the problems they legitimately faced were seeking legal support or compensation for a program that, according to the government, never existed. Often their outcries were hushed by government officials or brushed aside as paranoia by the media, at it is only after the high-profile investigation into MKULTRA that these people are finally getting their claims heard and understood. For many of these individuals, as a result of taking part (voluntarily or otherwise) in these experiments they experienced disillusionment in the Government, as they began to question the moral aptitude of a leading body that would intentionally inflict such stress and trauma upon its own subjects. Regardless of some potentially exaggerated claims, the fact remains that MKULTRA was a highly unethical programme based upon the involuntary involvement of innocent participants, and a dark time in American Psychological history. 6/7.The Milgram Experiment on obedience to authority figures began in July 1961, and were a series of social psychology experiments lead by Yale University Psychologist Stanley Milgram. The experiments were intended to measure the willingness of study participants to obey an authority figure who instructed them to perform acts that conflicted with their personal moral code. ...read more.

Conclusion

The highest degree of skill and care should be required through all stages of the experiment of those who conduct or engage in the experiment. Stanley Milgram, the designer and scientist in charge of the experiments, was a PhD-level psychologist in charge of the psychology program at Yale University. There is little doubt as to his qualifications in conducting the experiment. While there was clearly considerable skill gone into the running of the experiment, it is however dubious as to whether or not equal care was involved as the experiment is designed to maximise scientific findings, not the comfort of the participants. 9. During the course of the experiment the human subject should be at liberty to bring the experiment to an end if he has reached the physical or mental state where continuation of the experiment seems to him to be impossible. Even though the scientist in charge would employ verbal "cues" on a subject looking to withdraw from the experiment, if the subject still expressed desire to terminate his/her involvement, they were allowed to. The experiments were not in violation of the Code in this respect. 10. During the course of the experiment the scientist in charge must be prepared to terminate the experiment at any stage, if he has probably cause to believe, in the exercise of the good faith, superior skill and careful judgment required of him that a continuation of the experiment is likely to result in injury, disability, or death to the experimental subject. While there is no evidence to suggest that Milgram would have refused to end the experiment in this circumstance, as the experiment could not result in "injury, disability, or death to the experimental subject" it is unlikely that he would ever be put in a position that he would have to end the experiment. ...read more.

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