Ethical considerations in psychological research

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Ethical considerations in psychological research by Mind Map: Ethical considerations in psychological research

1. BPS Guidelines for research with human participants

1.1. Ps should feel free to leave the study at any time

1.2. Informed consent

1.3. No deception

1.4. Debriefing

1.4.1. Should be used to complete the participant's understanding of the study

1.4.2. Allows the researcher to monitor any unforeseen negative effects of the study

1.4.3. Should be used to find out anything that has upset or disturbed the participant

1.5. Confidentiality

1.6. Ps should be protected from both psychical and psychological harm

1.6.1. If this is threatened then the researcher should terminate the research even when the P has not asked to withdraw

1.7. The privacy of Ps needs to be respected during observational research

1.8. Psychologists should only give advice to Ps for which they are qualified

2. How can researchers apply the ethical guidelines?

2.1. Researchers should try to anticipate and avoid anything that might possibly upset Ps

2.2. Information sheet and consent form

2.2.1. Will explain the objectives of the study and what it will involve

2.2.2. Should inform Ps that they can withdraw at any time and that their data will remain confidential/anonymous

2.2.3. If Ps do not receive full information there will be some element of deception

2.2.4. Should be signed only when Ps have read and understood the information with opportunity to question the researcher

2.2.4.1. Extra safeguards should be put in place for Ps whammy have problems in understanding the information e.g. children - information should be written in a clear and understandable way, and the form should be signed by both the child and parent

2.3. Where Ps are from a different culture, age group and social background from the researcher, a representative of the groups should be consulted to check for any ethical implications

3. Dilemmas

3.1. The BPS recognises that it may be possible to study some psychological phenomena without withholding some information etc

3.1.1. If researchers believe this is the case they should first look for alternatives - when there are no alternatives the researcher should fully inform Ps at the earliest stage - the P should be given the right to withdraw their data or to give retrospective informed consent

3.1.2. In some studies, researchers can ask Ps if they are willing to be deceived

3.2. Researchers want to give full information about a study but they do not want to cause demand characteristics

3.3. Full disclosure will reduce internal validity, so many researchers will not provide all details of the study thus reduce an element of deception