The Enriching Experience

Samuel M. Turner and Deborah C. Beidel

in Diversity in Human Interactions

Published in print September 2003 | ISBN: 9780195143904
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199848171 | DOI:
The Enriching Experience

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When people think about research, different images may come to mind. Despite the differences in these images, those who conduct research share a common endeavor — the pursuit of knowledge. In school, children are taught that science is objective. However, scientific discoveries are the work of scientists and thus, science has a human face. Despite the often quoted dictum that science is a purely objective process, nothing could be further from the truth, as scientific pursuits are embedded within a cultural context and are influenced by all the associated cultural values, beliefs, and biases. In the case of psychology, conducting research involves many different decision points, ranging from study design, to participant selection, to instrumentation, and to the interpretation and presentation of results. Each of these involves a human decision, which is, in turn, influenced by prior knowledge as well as the scientist's values, personal style, and particular worldview. This chapter addresses the process of research and how the current status of psychological science has been influenced by researchers' decisions regarding issues of diversity.

Keywords: research; science; cultural values; beliefs; biases; diversity; worldview; psychology

Chapter.  4681 words. 

Subjects: Clinical Psychology

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