Ethics

Critical Thinking Questions

Some argue that animal research is inherently flawed in terms of being ethical because unlike human participants, animals do not consent to be involved in research. Do you agree with this perspective? Given that animals do not consent to be involved in research projects, what sorts of extra precautions should be taken to ensure that they receive the most humane treatment possible?

Hint:

In general, the fact that consent cannot be obtained from animal research subjects places extra responsibility on the researcher to ensure that the animal is treated as humanely as possible and to respect the sacrifice that the animal is making for the advancement of science. Like human research, the animals themselves should also receive some of the benefits of the research, and they do in the form of advanced veterinary medicine, and so on.

At the end of the last section, you were asked to design a basic experiment to answer some question of interest. What ethical considerations should be made with the study you proposed to ensure that your experiment would conform to the scientific community’s expectations of ethical research?

Hint:

The research should be designed in such a way to adhere to the principles described in this section depending on the type of study that was proposed.