Essay Example on Little Albert Experiment

Published: 2023-05-28
Essay Example on Little Albert Experiment
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Psychology
Pages: 2
Wordcount: 547 words
5 min read


Little Albert experiment is a well-known psychology study carried out by John B. Watson and a scholar known as Rosalie Rayner. In the past, a Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlov had steered experiments indicating the conditioning manner in dogs. Watson had an interest in taking the Pavlov's research further. He wanted to show that emotional responses could be characteristically conditioned in human beings. The element in the experiment was a child that Rayner and Watson referred to as Albert B. popularly referred to as Little Albert.

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The child, at the age of 9 months, got exposed to several stimuli, including a bunny, a rat, a monkey, burning newsprint, and masks. After presenting the boy to these stimuli, they observed his reactions. At first, the boy displayed no fear of any of the objects. After a while, he was exposed to a rat, and Watson produced a loud noise after hitting a metal cylinder using a hammer. The child eventually began to cry. After a series of pairing the loud noise with the rat, the baby started to cry just after seeing a rat. According to the research, a conclusion on how classical training can be employed to give an emotional reply.

Guidelines and Procedures in Conducting a Research

In the past years, there were few guidelines that researchers would use to conduct their research. However, advancement in the research centers, new procedures, and guidelines have been rolled out to guide researchers. The procedures include:

  • Recognizing and developing a topic.
  • Conducting a preliminary quest for the information.Locating the materials and evaluating the sources.
  • The most challenging part of conducting research is selecting a topic. It is always the first step while conducting research, which is very important. One should choose an item that is within the parameters of the assignment. Before commencing on your essay, one is required to conduct a preliminary search to find out whether there is sufficient information and set the research context.

Did the Experiment Follow Ethical Guidelines?

The experiment carried out on Little Albert did not follow the ethical guideline. At the moment, Raynor and Watson were doing their work; they were neither ethical guidelines nor a committee. Though it is wrong to measure historical research using modern-day research, it is to terminate the experiment as being unethical.

It is because they violated the terms that include, do no harm, the participant has a right to withdraw, the participant has to be offered the time to make a decision, and the researcher has to have competency in the research field. The Little Albert would suffer life-long damage following the experiment. It was contrary to the fact that the psychologists were required to eliminate or reduce the potential harm that the participant would face during the trial or afterward.

Little Albert - Research and Children

Following the ethical guidelines put in place to control how research is conducted, it is to conclude that the experiment conducted on Little Albert was unethical. It is because Watson and Raynor violated all the guidelines. It is evident where Watson uses a mask. A thing could bring any child distress. He, too, could have healed Albert's phobia but chose not to since they wanted to carry on the experiment. It happened until Albert's mother came to pick him.

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