Term of Award

Summer 1982

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (restricted to Georgia Southern)

Department

Department of Psychology

Committee Chair

Gary McClure

Committee Member 1

Paul R. Kleinginna, Jr.

Committee Member 2

Richard L. Rogers

Abstract

Subjects were 66 male and 62 female undergraduate psychology students, who were randomly assigned to one of four conditions: Condition I, informed consent and debriefing; Condition II, informed consent without debriefing,; Condition III, debriefing without informed consent; and Condition IV, no informed consent and no debriefing. Subjects were shown a videotape of a student undergoing a deception experiment, then given a questionnaire to complete. The questionnaire employed ratings on a scale from 1 to 7, and asked subjects' opinions about the ethicality of the experiment, how they thought the subject felt after participating in the experiment, and whether they would be willing to assist in administering the experiment to other persons. The four groups were treated differently in that, in the informed consent conditions, the videotape subject signed a consent form which mentioned that deception might be used in the experiment. In the no informed consent conditions, the videotape subject signed a consent form which did not mention deception. In the debriefing conditions, subjects were shown the debriefing portion of the videotape prior to completing the questionnaire. In no debriefing conditions, subjects were shown only the experimental portion of the videotape prior to completing the questionnaire. Findings were that debriefing produced greater acceptance of deception, while informed consent increased acceptance of deception for females and decreased acceptance of deception for males.

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