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Lecture 3

PSYC 203 Lecture Notes - Lecture 3: Little Albert Experiment, Fear Conditioning, Informed Consent

Course Code
PSYC 203
Christopher Bowie

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Historical cases of ethically questionable research
Watson & Rayner (1920) – the “Little Albert” study, fear conditioning
with animals
McGraw (1941) – e*ect of repeated pinpricks
Dennis (1941) – raising children in isolation
First ethics code established by APA: 1953
Most recent revision: 2002
Ethics code – 5 general principles
1. Bene6cence and non-malfeasance
Constantly weigh costs and bene6ts, what is the greatest good,
some bad might be worth a lot of good
2. Fidelity and responsibility
Constantly aware of responsibility to society, professionalism
3. Integrity
Being honest, no falsi6cation of data or misleading research
4. Justice
Fair treatment
5. Respect for people’s rights an dignity
Safeguard welfare, protect rights
Institutional Review Board (IRB)
General community and academic sta* representation
Judging bene6ts and costs
Determine whether project meets ethical guidelines
Key factor: degree of risk of subjects
oNos risk
oMinimal risk (everyday life)
oAt risk (greater risk than everyday)
Issue: whether to judge methodological adequacy
oCould have lofty goal but inadequate methodology which means
the study will likely be a waste of time and money
Ethical Guidelines
Informed consent – su@cient information to decide whether to
oStudy’s basic description
oHow long it will take
oMay quit at any time
oCon6dentiality and anonymity insured
oContact information (researcher, IRB chair)
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