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Pros And Cons Of Ethical Responsibilities In Social Science

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693 words
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M8A1 Project #7
Dawn C. Murrain
Excelsior College

LA 498SS
Ethical Responsibilities in Social Science Research
Social Science Capstone
Instructor Adam McGlynn
April 20, 2014

Ethical Responsibilities of Social Science Research
Often, scientists are tasked with the role of providing evidence to support theories or to predict future outcomes based on scientific research. This methods or research are usually accepted in natural sciences like chemistry and physics. This is because unlike social science, they usually use formulas, well laid out structures and methods (Guttin, 2012). However, when it comes to social science, researchers usually work using theories by formulating hypothesis, and researching to prove or disapprove the theories. When doing this, social science researchers usually become advocates in certain circumstances. This paper highlights some of the pros and cons of scientists becoming advocates, and gives examples of when social scientists become advocates and situations where they observe objectivity.
Becoming advocates for social scientists have both benefits and drawbacks. On the good side, Gutting (2012) says that it can supplement general knowledge, critical intensity, practical experience and good sense. Gutting also says that scientists know where a certain piece of work falls in their relevant discipline. This allows them to be good advocates. Taking sides also allows social scientists to help curb harmful behaviors by conducting research on their harmful effects and discouraging the behaviors with facts. Examples are effects of drugs and substance abuse, risky sexual behaviors etc.
On the other hand, the cons of becoming an advocate are: (1) Overgeneralization- this happens when resear...

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...observe and report facts as given from both sides without interfering with any data. This is because people may base their decision to join a certain religion from the findings, only to be misguided by lack of objectivity by the researcher.

References
Corn-Revere, R (2011). Moral panics , the first amendment, and the limits of social science.
Communications Lawyer, 23 (3).
Gutting, G. (2012). How reliable are the social sciences. Retrieved from http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/05/17/how-reliable-are-the-social-sciences/ Lecture notes. (2014). Module notes: concepts concerning reliable social science.
The Geographical Review. (2011). Social barriers to renewable energy landscapes. The
Geographical Review. Retrieved from http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?id=GALE%7CA259624166&v=2.1&u=wash89460&it=r&p=AONE&sw=w&asid=1cc7b0c2170ba25ed09b4b3bcc06d896

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that scientists are tasked with providing evidence to support theories or predict future outcomes based on scientific research. however, when it comes to social science, researchers work using theories by formulating hypothesis, and researching to prove or disapprove the theories.
  • Explains that being advocates for social scientists can supplement general knowledge, critical intensity, practical experience, and good sense. taking sides also helps curb harmful behaviors.
  • Explains the pros and cons of becoming an advocate, including overgeneralization, illogical reasoning, resistance to change, and selective observation. gutting and corn-revere also hold that advocacy only allows researcher to assert their thinly editorial or moral preferences.
  • Explains how social scientists can become advocates when they are researching causes, effects, or barriers to certain aspects. a study carried out by the geographical review (2011) is an example of when a researcher can take sides.
  • Opines that some research requires scientists to be impartial in their research. they should be open to ideas and present them in a balanced manner with objectivity.
  • Cites corn-revere, r, gutting, g, and the geographical review.
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