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Chapter 3

Chapter 3

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Anna Nagy

Chapter 3 Ethical Research Milgrams Obedience Experiment Stanley Milgram conducted a series of experiments to study the phenomenon of obedience to authority. He placed an ad in the newspaper offering to pay $4.50 to males to participate in a study of memory and learning. In reality, it was an experiment to see how much of a shock participants would administer to Mr. Wallace (the learner) when he got a question wrong because they were told to by authority. When the teachers shocked Mr. Wallace with about 120 volts, Mr. Wallace began screaming in pain and eventually yelled that he wanted out. What if the teacher wanted to quit? This is what happened they became visibly upset by the pain Mr. Wallace was experiencing, but the scientist urged them to continue using a specific series of verbal prods. Approximately 65% of the participants continued to deliver shocks all the way to 450volts. This study received a great deal of publicity and has been applied to many instances, such as the Holocaust. But what about the ethics of this experiment? The Belmont Report Current ethical guidelines for both behavioral and medical researchers have their origins in The Belmont Report: Ethical Principles and guidelines for the Protection of Human Subjects of Research This report defined principles and applications that have guided more detailed regulations and the American Psychology Association Ethics Code. The three basic ethical principles are beneficence, respect for persons (autonomy), and justice. The associated applications of these principles are assessment of risks and benefits, informed consent, and selection of subjects. Assessment of Risks and Benefits The principle of benefice refers to the need for research to maximize benefits and minimize any possible harmful effects of participation. Risk-benefit analysis we must calculate potential risks and benefits that are likely to result from the experiment. Ethical principals require asking whether the research procedures have minimized risk to participants. Potential risks include factors such as psychological or physical harm and loss of confidentiality. The cost of not conducting the study if in fact the proposed procedure is the only way to collect potentially valuable data can be considered. The benefits include direct benefits to the participants (ie. educational benefits), material benefits (ie money), or less tangible benefits (ie. being a part of a scientific experiment that has the potential to benefit society). www.notesolution.com
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