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Using Deception in Social Science Research

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Why is deception a controversial practice in social science research? Find a recently published article in a refereed journal that reports an empirical research study in which some deception was involved. Describe what the researchers did, and what justification they gave for the deception.

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Intentional deception as used in social science research can consist of: (1) withholding information in order to get subjects to participate in something that they might otherwise decline, (2) using deceptive instructions and manipulations in laboratory research, (3) concealing and staging manipulations in field research, or (4) representing one's work as something other than what it really is.

Deception varies in degree. A low degree of deception may consist of a researcher giving the participant limited knowledge about a subject so that he or she will respond naturally.[2] A high degree of deception may consist of the researcher lying about the purpose of the study, or about his or her reason for ...

Solution Summary

Deception has been used in social science research for years. However, certain types of deception have been outlawed by an ethics committee. When is it okay to use deception in current research practices?