Investigating psychology
Investigating psychology

This free course is available to start right now. Review the full course description and key learning outcomes and create an account and enrol if you want a free statement of participation.

Free course

Investigating psychology

5 Asking questions about ethics

Psychology has a darker side to its history than you might at first expect.

By clicking ‘pin all’ of the ‘Ethics’ narrative you can see all the people, contexts, perspectives and methods that are associated with ethics.

If you click on each of the titles you can see that those related to the narrative are highlighted.

As you can see, some of these are associated in a good way. For example, the context ‘ethical considerations’ discusses the Ethical Code of Conduct for Psychological Research developed in 1985 by the BPS. Others, however, have more negative associations. By now you should be aware of the ethical debates around (in)famous psychological studies such as Milgram’s obedience studies and Zimbardo’s prison studies. The next activity considers the relationship between different aspects of history.

Activity 5

Open the CHIP resource [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] in a new tab in your web browser and click the ‘Start Investigating Psychology’ link.

To begin, match the following:

Active content not displayed. This content requires JavaScript to be enabled.
Interactive feature not available in single page view (see it in standard view).

Pick one of the above (Anthropology, Evolutionary or Queer history/theory) and answer the following questions:

When was this perspective or method adopted?

You can type text here, but this facility requires a free OU account. Sign in or register.
Interactive feature not available in single page view (see it in standard view).

Answer

Anthropology Evolutionary Queer history/theory
When was this perspective or method adopted? 1915 1870 1973

Why do you think this was a ripe time for it to become popular? In other words, why were these kinds of questions asked by psychologists at this point?

You can type text here, but this facility requires a free OU account. Sign in or register.
Interactive feature not available in single page view (see it in standard view).

Discussion

Questions that you might ask here would focus on the historical context. The CHIP resource has a timeline along the bottom. What other events were occurring at the same time? This is an exploratory tool so do explore!

What ethical issues are related to this type of method or perspective?

You can type text here, but this facility requires a free OU account. Sign in or register.
Interactive feature not available in single page view (see it in standard view).

Discussion

This resource will also encourage you to think about the relationships between different people, contexts, perspectives and methods. You might even find it helpful to follow one of the narratives.

CHIP_1

Take your learning further

Making the decision to study can be a big step, which is why you'll want a trusted University. The Open University has over 40 years’ experience delivering flexible learning and 170,000 students are studying with us right now. Take a look at all Open University courses.

If you are new to university level study, find out more about the types of qualifications we offer, including our entry level Access courses and Certificates.

Not ready for University study then browse over 900 free courses on OpenLearn and sign up to our newsletter to hear about new free courses as they are released.

Every year, thousands of students decide to study with The Open University. With over 120 qualifications, we’ve got the right course for you.

Request an Open University prospectus