This should be pretty straight forward. Be a good person in life following an ethical and moral code of conduct and all will be right in the world.
However, when one is studying a subject that requires interaction with interview participants, online surveys, primary and secondary research it is not so straight forward.
Yes a Netiquette guide should be followed where one is always courteous and mindful of others while conducting any communication online, but proof needs to be shown and approved to a board of ethics that ALL mental and physical well being has been taken into account, Data protection rules need to be followed. the proposed questions for any in person interviews or online surveys should be presented, as well as reasons for choosing those methods of research. Informed consent needs to be given from willing participants, all demonstrating a sound knowledge of why these steps are needed and how they will be achieved
There is a three step process after submission and only after all three steps have been completed and approved, will permission be granted and approval to start the project along with research may begin.
There are several dates throughout the academic year to apply to the Ethics board, however it is recommended the applications are submitted sooner rather than later allowing for as much time as possible to do the research, fitting in with the SMART plan mentioned in previous blogs.
The application that accompanies this blog was submitted and passed in November of 2021 on the second meeting of the board.