Examine the reasons why some sociologists choose not to use experiments when conducting research
There are two types of experiment methods which are laboratory and field. Laboratory experiments are normally set up by the researcher itself. Field experiments are an experiment carried out in a ‘natural’ setting; that is, unlike in the case of laboratory experiments, the setting is not created by the researcher. Sociologists tend to use field experiments rather than laboratory experiments as people will behave more naturally in field experiments rather than laboratory experiments, it is also easier to generalise results, greater validity in the results of the experiment and also fewer demand characteristics if the participants are unaware. But sociologists tend to generally avoid using experiments for research this may be because there many practical, ethical and theoretical issues that apply to these research methods. All sociologists look at the practical, ethical and theoretical issues before they start their research. They tend not to use laboratory experiments as there many practical issues applied such as the costs and time which are needed for this type of experiment. Other practical issues which can apply to this method is the target population, as if you choose a wrong group of people, it can affect your overall result and affect the validity of the research. Sociologists don’t use experimental methods because of the artificial setting that is created from laboratory experiments; this will cause the research done to lack validity. Milgrams study was carried out in an artificial environment where participants took electric shocks for getting an answer wrong, but one of these were an actor who actually faked being electrically shocked. Milgrams study had many ethical issues such as deception as not every participant was not informed about what they were doing, apart from the actor. There was a risk towards the health of the participant. Other examples...
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