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Ethics in Psychological Research

Ethics in Psychological Research
A Practical Guide for the Student Scientist

November 2018 | 120 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

Ethics in Psychological Research is a brief, practical guide for student researchers and their mentors to answer ethical questions and navigate issues of institutional policies and academic freedom. Authors Daniel P. Corts and Holly E. Tatum guide readers in identifying, preventing, mitigating, and resolving ethical issues in research using a unique ethical framework. Each of the standalone chapters  provide real-life examples of ethical questions, a description of scholarly work on the matter, and suggestions for how to address similar problems should they arise in the researcher’s own work. The book makes for a succinct and easy-to-use reference for any student conducting research in the behavioral sciences.

About the Authors
Chapter 1: Ethics and Values in Psychological Science
Values in Science  
Values and the Integrity of Research  
Open Science  
Psychologist's Code of Ethics  
Ethics and the Student Scientist  
A Look at What's Ahead  
Chapter Summary  
Chapter 2: Before the Research Begins: Understanding Freedoms and Responsibilities
Academic Freedom  
Responsibility in Student-Mentor Relationships  
Chapter 3: Ethics of Collaborating: Ownership and Authorship
Ethical Values in Collaborative Research  
Data Ownership  
Chapter Summary  
Appendix A: A Student-Faculty Research Agreement  
Chapter 4: Managing Risks with Human Subjects
Human Subject Protections  
Identifying Risks  
Preventing, Reducing, and Justifying Risks  
Benefits of Research  
Challenges Unique to Student Researchers  
Applying the PASA Model  
Chapter Summary  
Chapter 5: Navigating the IRB Review Process
Introducing the IRB  
Defining Research  
Preparing to Communicate With the IRB  
Writing Your IRB Proposal  
Chapter 6: Working With Animal Subjects
Rules and Regulations for Use of Animals in Research  
Justification of Research  
Capabilities of the Personnel and Institution  
The Student Researcher  
Chapter Summary  
Chapter 7: Research Misconduct
Research Misconduct  
Research Misconduct is Harmful  
Questionable Research Practices  
Handling Research Misconduct  
Consequences of Research Misconduct  
Chapter Summary  
Chapter 8: Ethics of Statistical Practices
Statistics in Research  
Domains of Ethics in Statistical Practice  
Responsible Use and Reporting of Data and Methodology  
Abusing Researcher Degrees of Freedom  
Recommendations for Statistical Analysis  
The Open Science Framework  
Ethical Responsibilities to Others  
Chapter Summary  
Chapter 9: Ethical Writing Practices
The Literature Review  
What is Plagiarism?  
Why is Plagiarism Unethical?  
Peer Review  
Chapter Summary  

Ethics in Psychological Research is a guide to doing ethics in research that discusses integrity at every step of the process, from developing an idea and pre-registering hypotheses to determining authorship and presenting results. The focus is pragmatic, so the student is being taught direct applications of what they are learning in the course rather than a sort of lofty detached view of research methods.”

Jordan R. Wagge
Avila University

“A necessary collection of all the topics students need to understand when performing any type of research.”

Gary Popoli
Stevenson University

“This handbook compiles several semesters of research methodology into an easy-to-follow guide.”

Stephanie A. Kazanas
Tennessee Technological University
Key features


  • Coverage of writing and statistics gives importance to two ethical areas in research that receive little or no attention in traditional research methods texts.
  • Vignettes based on actual events provide examples that show how ethical problems arise and how people and organizations have addressed them.
  • Discussion questions at the end of chapters challenge students to hypothetically address real problems.
  • Additional resources for each chapter allow for more in-depth exploration of principles, learning about additional case studies, and finding tips for applying ethical principles.

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