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Ethical dilemmas in psychological practice : a survey of clinical psychologists.

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This study explored a sample of clinical psychologists' preferred resolutions to a series of hypothetical ethical dilemmas and their primary reasons for these choices. The relationship of various professional characteristics to choices and reasons was assessed. Ethical dilemmas volunteered by respondents were analyzed. Results indicated a general lack of consistency in decision making among psychologists in both actions taken to resolve dilemmas and reasons chosen to justify these actions. On the whole, psychologists with different characteristics did not differ in their choice of response to ethical dilemmas or their reasons for these choices. It is argued that diversity in professional decision making, and the ethical dilemmas volunteered by the profession, may serve as useful indices of those ethical issues that pose difficulties for professionals. These results are discussed in the light of similar findings and in the context of current ethical regulations.


Thesis (M.A.)-University of Natal, Pietermaritzburg, 1997.


Psychologists--Professional ethics., Decision making., Theses--Psychology.