Psychology Py4

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Discuss the scientific benefits measured against the ethical costs within psychology

The ethical issues when working with humans is that participants have the right to withdraw, not to be deceived, confidentiality, protection from physical and psychological harm and the right to be debriefed after the study.

There are also a number of ethical issues when working with non-human participants within psychology. The first set of ethical issues when working with non-human participants within psychology is the ‘three R’s which is to (Refine the study, Reduce the number of animals used and to replace the use of animal with something else). The second set of ethical issues for working with non-human participants within psychology is Bateson’s cube; this refers to reducing the degree of suffering for the animal, how effective the quality of the research is and the potential medical benefit that is gained from the research.

Aronson argues that all proposals for research should be done on a cost-benefit basis-weighing how much good society will come from the research and how much ‘bad’ will happen for the participants.

The term ethical cost can mean a cost to an individual taking part in research. Examples of this include Milgrams study on obedience. There was a number of ethical costs within Milgrams research, for instance one major ethical cost within Milgrams research is that he failed to protect his participants from both physical and psychological harm. Milgram failed to do so as the participants that took part within Milgrams study experiences severe amounts of physical and psychological harm; two of which had seizures due to the stress. The participants experienced great harm as they were made to believe that they were actually giving the confederate within Milgrams study real electric shocks, when in fact the confederate ‘Mr Wallace’ was in fact in on the study.

However it can also be argued that there was a number of scientific benefits that were...
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