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[PSYB01H3] - Midterm Exam Guide - Everything you need to know! (86 pages long)


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYB01H3
Professor
Anna Nagy
Study Guide
Midterm

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UTSC
PSYB01H3
MIDTERM EXAM
STUDY GUIDE

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Ethics
Last class, we watched Milgram Obedience video
We did a case study, looking at the Abi Grave incident and deciding on whether they are a few bad
apples or normal
Maybe we should look at research that has already been done
In this particular case, we could talk to the people involved (prisoners, soldiers), hear it from them
rather than other sources
We could also study behaviour in prisons to give us insight about whether that behaviour is
plausible
Also look at two old experiments
Zimbardo prison experiment at Stanford University (mock prison)—supposed to last 2 full
weeks, recruited participants from university and randomly assigned them to the role of prisoner
or guard
Had to stop study after 6 days because study got out of hand. Guards were brutal and
humiliated the prisoners to the degree that by no doubt there was psychological harm going
on
Phillip Zimbardo played the role of the prison warden. Not him, but his graduate student
stopped the study and said, What are you doing? He did not see it at the time
Other study: Milgram (came before Zimbardo)—how Nazi Germany could have happened (Both
Milgram and Zimbardo were thinking about this)
Participants truly believed that they were giving real shocks, but the shock was actually
small
Looking further into the video, you will see that 60% of the participants went all the way to
450 volts
Think about this: the protocol of the study was such that participants were in learning and
memory studies, they were to give a shock if the other person got the answer to the
question wrong. They did not know that they were actually being studied on obedience
The study suggested to us that when people are given orders, and the responsible is taken
away from them, in many cases, they will obey
Is it ethical?
What were some of the issues of the Milgram experiment? Look at chapters or tri-council
policy
It could be really distressing
There was deception (they weren’t told the purpose of the experiment). Often, studies
use confederates—the learner was actually an actor in the study
Harm can sometimes be unexpected or subtle; it can be psychological (not always physical), and you
have to be prepared to mitigate that harm and deal with it; you have to minimize the risk of harm. If you
don’t do so, then the study should not be allowed
Ethical considerations arose from brutal, horrific studies having been carried on
At one point, the US in the south created a study to look at untreated syphilis
African American men were not told that the study was about this
They got married, passed it to their wives, and passed it to their kids
Organizations even supported this and claimed that this study was needed
Not until 1973 a reporter made the news about this, and people were outraged, and a year
later, the study stopped
We have to maximize the benefits and minimize the risk of harm, including psychological and physical
harm, and loss of confidentiality, and impacts on groups
Benefits: developing knowledge, making treatments, understanding things, the individual may benefit,
or not
Informed consent is essential; technically, every study should be explained in terms of the purpose of
the research, the risks, the benefits, and it should be explained in a way that you can repeat it back to
show that you understand it. It’s not just about signing a paper
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That does not mean that you are given the hypothesis, because that could lead to bias
But you should be aware of what you are potentially getting yourself into
Free, ongoing, informed consent also involves that the person can leave the study when they feel like it
People need to be given the means to withdraw if they want
We also need to be thinking about power differentials. We need to mindful that we have people in
vulnerable positions—we are the ones with more knowledge about the study
Informed consent may be challenged by:
Lack of autonomy—can the individual make a free and informed decision?
Examples of when we wouldn’t be fully autonomous in our decision-making abilities: children
(may not have the intellectual capacity to fully understand the study, so parents must sign),
people who may have a physical or other type of disability (in history, people with mental illness
have been subjected to horrific studies, awful things even in the Douglas hospital and Montreal
happened)
Coercion
Do you think informed consent would have affected the outcome of the Milgram study?
We couldn’t have done Milgram without deception
But can we do something like that?
Deception is frowned upon in the Tri-council policy. It is only allowed if the study is minimal risk,
meaning that there is very little chance that any type of harm could come—it does not involve stress
in any way, no risk for physical or psychological harm. Would they have participated if they had
known the true purpose of the study? Lack of consent unlikely to impact welfare. There has to be
some sort of debriefing in the end. Lastly, you are not allowed to do anything that involves a
therapeutic intervention—nothing like that can involve deception
Deception is when there is active misrepresentation of information
In Milgram, the purpose of the study wasn’t properly portrayed, and there was somebody used to
set the stage for the study (use of confederate)
The APA, CPA, and Tri-council policy at first all had similar but different policies, and they came
together after the occurrence of numerous studies
Drug for blood disorder required children to come in often, and new drug allowed for them to take it
at home
The children were experiencing side effects that were not anticipated
Researcher decided that she needs to inform parents of this
The drug company told her that she cannot inform participants of the side effects, could not
publish the results that included side effects, and at that time, the hospital and the
university did not back her up
As a result, the University of Toronto created a new ethics policy, hence having contributed
to the policy
Principle of academic freedom is integral to the research process, and it involves the freedom to
challenge conventional thoughts, to express one’s opinions about that thought, and the freedom to
challenge one’s institution (and more)—also, that we engage in thoughtful, full scientific inquiry and
share those thoughts. We have a commitment to disseminate. Adhere to professional standards and
our institution backs us up
The Tri-council policy encompasses all that we talked about earlier in terms of principles, etc.
Overarching respect for dignity
Respect for persons—moral obligation to respect autonomy and the idea that people have to
be given the opportunity to make an informed choice on whether or not they will voluntarily
participate. Need to take in consideration vulnerable people—they and their rights must be
protected
Factors that diminish autonomy: prisoners, children, disabled, barriers to resources,
poverty, living in isolating conditions
Concern for welfare—physical, psychological, maybe also spiritual health
In First Nations, for example, we must respect their spiritual considerations
Privacy and control of information, biological material
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