The ethics of research
Reason for embargo
Doing ethical research is a fundamentally important part of educational academic practice. Behaving ‘well’ in relation to your participants is not a new phenomenon. However, more recently, a more formal culture of ethics review through Institutional Review Boards (IRB’s) and Research Ethics Committees (REC’s) has emerged which has put the ethics of education research in the spotlight and, at times, questioned conventions of practice. It has been common-place in education research, for example, for teachers/lecturers to give out surveys to their students to assess pedagogical issues. However this raises questions of whether consent of students is full and free if no real option to ‘opt-out’ is provided. Similarly, university/college education students often go into schools to undertake projects with school children and are assured by those in authority that ‘everyone wants to take part’. Again, this raises questions about the power relationship between researchers, gatekeepers and the children involved- shouldn’t children, like adults, also be allowed to say ‘no’ to being researched?
This is the author accepted manuscript. The final version is available from Sage via the link in this record.
In Wyse D, Smith E, Suter LE, Selwyn N. (ed). The Bera /Sage Handbook of Educational Research. SAGE, London 14 Jan 2017
Place of publication