Five points and a lament about range and cotton's "reports of assent and permission in research with children: Illustrations and suggestions"
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Ethics and Behavior 5 (4):333 – 344 (1995)
This comment responds to an article by Range and Cotton (1995) on reporting of parental permission and child assent procedures in published articles for 4 psychology journals. Issue is taken with the assumptions, methodology, interpretations, and implications of listing researchers in the Range and Cotton article. There is no evidence researchers failed in their ethical obligations or that children were put at risk. Reporting permission/assent in publications is not an ethical requirement. Listing researchers as "failing" to do something not part of an ethical code is lamentable. Too many unfortunate implications and problems can be derived from Range and Cotton's analysis and conclusions.
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