Ethical Norms for Research

In addition to the three ethical principles in the Belmont Report, the National Commission (1979) also identified six norms to guide research: (1) use of a valid research design; (2) evidence of researcher competency; (3) identification of consequences of the research in terms of keeping participants' identification confidential; (4) maximizing benefits, minimizing risks; (5) appropriate sample selection and voluntary informed consent; and (6) informing participants of compensation for potential harm. Of course, ethical challenges arise as researchers struggle with the meaning of these norms. For example, how do researchers defend their research design as valid or provide evidence of their competency? Quantitative, ...

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