What is research ethics? Potter Steward states that “ethics is knowing the difference between what you have the right to do and what is right to do”.
People are sensitive to what you ask them. Before asking questions you need to consider the following: do I need to ask it, and be careful of how you work a question so that you do not cause offense. If you do not have a genuine reason for asking a question, such as asking the participant there age, then do you really need to ask it?
The key principles in research ethics are, be honest (honest with the participants) and honestly report what was found. Do not bend the results to fit your idea. It could be very easy to change your results to fit the answer you were looking for, especially if you didn’t get the answer you were looking for, but this is obviously massively unethical.
If you were going to ask questions that are of a sensitive nature, you must get a signed consent form. Sensitive topics include; crime, gambling, and animal experimentation to list a few.
The type of questions I will be asking during my questionnaire will not be of a sensitive nature and are not particularly personal questions, and my questionnaire will be anonymous, so I am not required to get my participants to fill out an extensive ethics consent form.
This week we were given a quick talk about the Be Inspired program a Staffs uni. The program supports Staffordshire based students and graduates who have a business idea you want to launch. You have to present a business plan about you business start-up idea and attend an interview to see if you are offered a place on the program. If you are accepted you are coached and mentored for 12 months and it helps your business to get off the the best possible start.
I absolutely want to apply for this program, it is exactly what I want to do. However I am currently inquiring my eligibility as I live in Cheshire and not Staffordshire. But I am hoping that fact that I am a Staffs student and hope to get studio space in Staffs after my course will make me “Staffordshire-based”.
This week we have also been given the timetable of our first technical instruction workshops which start next week. I am attending a workshop on laser cutting and a workshop on surface pattern next week, so I am very much looking forward to that.