Research Ethics

APA seeks comments on revised ethical guidelines for high school research projects

Guidelines advise students and teachers on conduct of research with human participants.

The Committee on Human Research (CHR) of the American Psychological Association (APA) is seeking comments from the broad scientific community on the draft revision of the APA Guidelines for Ethical Conduct of Behavioral Projects Involving Human Participants by High School Students (the Guidelines).

The purpose of the Guidelines is to advise high school students and their research supervisors on the conduct of research with human participants in order to ensure the ethical treatment of participants and compliance with federal regulatory and policy requirements.

CHR has revised the Guidelines in light of recent changes in federal regulations (PDF, 196KB) and standard practices for research with human participants, as well as to accord with the most recent version of the APA Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct. The previous version (PDF, 923KB) of the Guidelines was published in 1991.

Comments on the revised draft are being sought from individual scientists, research and academic institutions, APA governance groups, divisions and state and provincial psychological associations. Once comments have been reviewed and any concerns addressed by CHR, the document will receive further review by the APA Board of Scientific Affairs and APA Board of Directors. Adoption as APA policy will require approval by the Council of Representatives.

Comments may be submitted via email to Jenna McGwin of APA’s Research Ethics Office. The deadline for comments is April 6, 2012.