Week 11: Being Mindful of Ethics in Research for Positive Social Change
Throughout this course, you have reviewed numerous studies that contributed to the development of key theories in psychology. Some of the research might have seemed questionable to you, such as Zimbardo’s prison study, Milgram’s obedience experiment, or Bandura’s Bobo Doll experiment. As a result of studies such as these, ethical guidelines were established to minimize any negative impact that study participants might experience. This week, you will learn more about the ethical guidelines that are in place to protect participants’ rights and safety. As a social change agent and psychology professional, you might be conducting your own research; think about how you would protect the safety of your participants while seeking information that could lead to positive social change. You will also submit your completed Psychology Theories Template at the end of the week.
- Evaluate ethical issues related to research
- Analyze actions for positive social change
- Evaluate key concepts in theories
American Psychological Association. (2020). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (7th ed.). https://doi.org/10.1037/0000165-000
“Protecting the Rights and Welfare of Research Participants” (pp. 21–26)
Fisher, C. B., & Vacanti-Shova, K. (2012). The responsible conduct of psychological research: An overview of ethical principles, APA ethics code standards, and federal regulations. In S. J. Knapp, M. C. Gottlieb, M. M. Handelsman, & L. D. VandeCreek (Eds.), APA handbook of ethics in psychology, Vol. 2: Practice, teaching, and research (pp. 335–369). American Psychological Association.
Walden University. (2018). The Walden community: Scholars of change. Retrieved from https://www.waldenu.edu/about/social-change/scholars-of-change
At this website, review a few of the latest videos by Walden scholars of change to support your understanding of social change and the research needed to support such change.
Walden University, LLC. (Producer) (2016). Social change research [Video file]. Baltimore, MD: Author.
Note: The approximate length of this media piece is 7 minutes.
Accessible player –Downloads–Download Video w/CCDownload AudioDownload Transcript
Discussion: Ethical Research for Social Change
Consider the research articles you have read throughout this course and the themes and topics that were explored. Many of articles are descriptions of seminal research that contributed to the development of key theories in psychology, some were conducted to advance knowledge in the field, and many had positive social change implications.
In this week’s discussion, you will be an agent for positive social change and describe a study you would like to conduct that could improve people’s lives. In your post, do not worry about accurately describing the design or methodology of your study; focus instead on what you would like to learn more about and what kinds of participants you would include in your study. Here is an example of the beginning of a discussion post describing a study and its participants:
I would like to conduct a study that examines the characteristics that contribute to adolescent texting while driving. My participants would be adolescents who are of driving age, male or female, anywhere in the United States, any culture, any socioeconomic level.
The rest of the post would include a description of an ethical consideration and the positive social change implications of the study.
- Review this week’s Learning Resources on conducting ethical research and promoting social change
- Think of a study you would like to conduct that has implications for positive social change.
- Identify at least one ethical guideline that you would need to consider as part of your research