This paper examines the ethical principles and procedures stipulated for research by the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) in relation to the ethical procedures and principles set forth for research by the American Psychological Association (APA). The examination begins with a description of LAUSD work setting research procedures.
This examination is followed by a discussion of these procedures in relation to APA Ethical Principle (9) and sub-principles. The paper ends with a brief evaluation and critique of the two standards (LAUSD and APA).
Description of LAUSD Working Setting Research Procedures
LAUSD procedures for research in the work setting stipulate ethical procedures for a wide variety of research and research-related matters including the nature of all research to which its guidelines are expected to apply and not apply as well as the kind of research the district prefers (improving student performance and/or improving instruction). Guidelines then note that a formal application must be presented by the researcher which is then reviewed by a committee.
Considerations guiding the committee are stipulated in the guidelines. Two of these considerations are: (1) that confidentiality and privacy will be maintained via design parameters; and (2) that demographic information not be collected unless participant anonymity is guaranteed and personal questions are worded objectively. (It would be helpful here if the LAUSD provided an example of what constitutes an objective wording of personal questions).
The guidelines then go on to specify the kind of research proposal considered acceptable to the committee, how to handle any changes in design or instrumentation made after committee approval is given, and the kinds of research which are not subject to guidelines. Guidelines also cover how long the research is typically expected to take and procedures that can be taken if there is a need to conduct re...