Observing Anger and Aggression Among Preadolescent Girls and Boys: Ethical Dilemmas and Practical Solutions
Underwood, Marion K.
Ethics and Behavior 2005; 15(3): 235-245
To understand how children manage anger and engage in various forms of aggression, it is important to observe children responding to peer provocation. Observing children's anger and aggression poses serious ethical and practical challenges, especially with samples of older children and adolescents. This article describes 2 laboratory methods for observing children's responses to peer provocation: 1 involves participants playing a game with a provoking child actor, and the other involves a pair of close friends responding to an actor posing as a difficult play partner. Both methods are described in detail, ethical safeguards are discussed, and evidence is presented to show that children understand their research rights in these types of investigations.
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