Ethical Issues in Teacher Research
by Floyd M. Hammack — 1997
This article identifies and examines the ethical issues surrounding teacher research, especially when the participants of the research are the teachers' own students. I first explore the movement to increase the relevance and applicability of research on and for teachers, and then address ethical issues in teaching and in research, especially as they stem from federal regulation requiring the protection of human subjects. The article then turns to the specific issues that arise in teacher research. Dual-role conflicts are described, as are the difficulties of assuring unfettered informed consent. The article relates these problems to the difficulties of deciding what is research and what is normal educational practice in the classroom setting, especially when qualitative research methodologies are used. Suggestions as to how the potential conflicts and ethical problems can be addressed are provided, but teacher researchers are cautioned that work with their own students raises particularly thorny issues.
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