Ethics Integrity and Aptitude Research

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Although policies, codes and guidelines are valuable and beneficial, just like any set of guidelines but they don’t provide all the answers, they are often in conflict and require a lot of interpretation. Therefore, it is essential that researchers learn to interpret, evaluate and apply different research regulations and make decisions and act ethically in different circumstances. Most decisions are based on the simple application of ethical principles.| Ethics Integrity and Aptitude

Case01 | Ethics Integrity and Aptitude

The research protocol used for a study of a drug’s effects for hypertension calls for administering the medication in different doses to fifty lab mice, along with the use of behavioral and chemical tests to assess the adverse effects. Tom is close to completing the study to test the Dr. Q. There are only five mice to be tested. But he is determined to complete his work before he can travel to Florida for holiday with pals who will leave tonight. He has administered the drug into the 50 mice but haven’t finished all the tests. He decides to take the extrapolation from the 45 results that were completed to generate the five additional results. | 

A variety of research ethics policies could state that Tom was unethical in fabricating data. If the study was sponsored by a federal institution like the NIH and the NIH, his actions would be considered to be Research misconduct that is defined by the government as “fabrication or falsification or plagiarizing” (or FFP). The actions that the majority of researchers label as unprofessional are considered to be infractions. It is essential to be aware that misconduct can only occur when researchers are trying to lie honest mistakes due to incompetence, inadequate recordkeeping and miscalculations, biases self-deceit, or inattention do not constitute misconduct. Additionally, reasonable disagreements regarding research procedures, methods and interpretations are not enough to cause research misconduct. Take the following example:

Case02 | Ethics Integrity and Aptitude

Dr. T has just discovered an error in math’s in his article that was accepted to be published in the journal. The error doesn’t affect the outcomes of his study, however, it could be misleading. The journal is just going to press, which means it’s too late for the journal to spot the error prior to it appearing in the printed version. To avoid embarrassing situations Dr. T decides to ignore the error.

Dr. T’s error isn’t an act of misconduct, or a decision to not take any steps to correct the error. The majority of researchers, as well various codes and guidelines would recommend the researcher. T should tell the journal (and any co-authors) about the error and think about publishing an errata or correction. Failure to publish an error correction is unethical as it would be in violation of the norms of transparency and impartiality in research. | Ethics Integrity and Aptitude

There are many other actions that the government doesn’t consider to be “misconduct”. However remain viewed by the majority of researchers as unprofessional. They are often called “other deviations” from the accepted research methods and can be classified as:

  • Publishing the same article in two different journals , without notifying the editors
  • The same paper is submitted to multiple journals without notifying the editors.
  • Not informing a collaborator about your intention to apply for a patent order to confirm your claim is the only creator
  • Incorporating a co-worker as an author of a piece in exchange for a favor, even though the author of the paper was not able to make any significant part in the research | Ethics Integrity and Aptitude
  • Sharing with colleagues confidential information from a piece of work you’re reviewing an article in a journal.
  • Making use of ideas, data or techniques you have learned from reading a grant or research paper without the permission of the author.
  • Cutting out the outliers in a data set without discussing the reasons in a paper
  • Employing an unsuitable statistical technique to increase the importance of your study
  • Avoiding peer review and releasing your findings in the media without providing. The appropriate information for peers to assess your work
  • Conducting a study of the literature, but failing to acknowledge the contribution of other researchers in the field or their previous work
  • Inflating the truth on a grant application order to convince the reviewers that your grant will contribute significant contributions to the field
  • Falsifying the facts on an application for employment or the curriculum vitae
  • The same study to graduate students to determine who could complete it faster.
  • Neglecting, overworking or exploiting students in postdoctoral or graduate programs.

Failure to maintain good research records :  

  • Failure to preserve research information for a reasonable time
  • Derogatory remarks or personal attacks in your analysis of the author’s submission
  • Offering a student a better grade in exchange for sexual favors
  • Utilizing a racist epithet the lab
  • Conducting significant deviations from the research protocol that was approved from your university’s Animal Care and Use Committee or Institutional Review Board for Human Subjects Research without notifying the committee or board.
  • The failure to report an unfavorable incident in a human research study
  • Research animals are used to test the waters. | Ethics Integrity and Aptitude
  • Inducing staff and students to biological hazards in the violation of the biosafety regulations at your institution.
  • Sabotage of someone’s work
  • Book, book or even the data
  • The idea of rigging an experiment is to are sure of how it will turn out
  • Making copies that are not legally authorized of data or papers software
  • Holding more than $10,000 of stock in a company which sponsors your research but not disclosing your financial stake
  • Intentionally overestimating the clinical importance of a drug order to gain financial advantages

Therefore, These acts would be seen as unethical by the majority of scientists. Some could be considered illegal in certain instances. However, the majority of them would be in violation of different codes of professional ethics or institution policies. 

But, they don’t belong to the strict category of activities which the government defines as misconduct in research. There is a lot of debate over what constitutes “research infractions” and a lot of researchers and policymakers aren’t content with the government’s slender definition, which focuses on FFP. But, considering the vast number of possible crimes that could fall under the category of “other serious deviations” and the practical difficulties of defining and policing other types of deviations, it’s reasonable to ask why government officials have decided to restrict their efforts to.

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In the end, there are many instances in research when various people are not in agreement about the right method of operation and there isn’t any broad agreement on how to be done. So, In these instances there could be valid arguments for both sides of the debate and ethical standards that may clash. So, These kinds of situations can lead to difficult decisions that research researchers must make. Referred to as moral or ethical dilemmas.   | Ethics Integrity and Aptitude

By Arslan Shah

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