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This content is taken from the Griffith University & Deakin University's online course, Why Ethics Matter: Ethical Research. Join the course to learn more.

Skip to 0 minutes and 10 secondsHello everyone and welcome to the course. We're so pleased you could join us. Our learners have come from all walks of life, and will be at various stages of their research journey. Some of you may already be in the midst of a project. Others will only have just started, and no doubt there's quite a few of you still toying with the idea of undertaking research sometime in the future. Whatever stage you're at, it's not too soon to start considering your ethical obligations. Knowing what's required will help you save time, plan each aspect of your research more effectively, and avoid common mistakes. This week we dive into key concepts underpinning ethical practice.

Skip to 0 minutes and 54 secondsAnd we'll look at some historical case studies that have shaped the way we undertake research today. We explore the difference between morals and ethics, and examine the value of a code of ethics in research and other professional settings. We'll reflect on the inherent power imbalances associated with your role as a researcher, and look at the principles underlying requirements for maintaining privacy, confidentiality, and obtaining informed consent for your work. Make sure you introduce yourself to everyone in the group and take advantage of the many opportunities for social learning this course has to offer. We have a full week ahead and some ethical dilemmas to ponder. So let's get started. See you in the discussions.

Welcome to Week 1

We’re so pleased you could join us. This week we focus on developing a solid understanding of ethical principles and how they apply to your research.

In Week 1, we dive straight into the big question of why ethics matter as we reflect on what history has taught us when it comes to questionable decision making in research.

We’ll break down core ethical principles so you can relate theory to practice and confidently embark on your research journey knowing how you should conduct yourself and most importantly, why.

Naturally, there will be many opportunities for you to ask questions and engage in conversations with the group along the way. We look forward to meeting you in the discussion spaces as the course progresses.

By the end of this course, you will be ready to:

  • discuss the value of ethical conduct in research
  • interpret ethical principles to apply theory to practice
  • apply a framework to support ethical research design

Meet the team

Your lead educators

Professor Nick Barter is an award winning academic, committed to expanding online education to as many learners as possible at Griffith University. He’s excited by corporate sustainability, specifically developing frameworks to transform strategy into action. For Nick, the beauty of research lies in its power to put a hypothesis to the test. With evidence in hand, we can create positive change and develop solutions to make our world a better place to live.

Associate Professor Christopher Stevenson is an epidemiologist and biostatistician with a particular interest in evidence-based health policy. He is the team leader for post-graduate coursework in the School of Health and Social Development at Deakin University and also teaches postgraduate courses in epidemiology and biostatistics.

Prior to joining Deakin, Chris worked for the Australian Bureau of Statistics and the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare where he helped design, implement and evaluate Australia’s national cancer screening programs. He also managed the national cancer monitoring program – which included developing new methods for monitoring cancer data.

He is a passionate teacher with a commitment to blending cutting-edge research with the education of future public health professionals.

If you haven’t already, follow your lead educators for course updates, feedback and discussions. Simply click on their profile and select ‘follow’.

Your task

Select the comments link below to start a conversation. In this first post we’d like you to share what you’re most hoping to learn in the course. Liking and replying to comments that interest or challenge you is an important way of contributing to the conversations that will make this course a vibrant experience; not only for you, but also for other learners.

When you have completed your task, select ‘Mark as Complete’ to help you track your progress through the course.

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This video is from the free online course:

Why Ethics Matter: Ethical Research

Griffith University