The Little Albert Experiment By John B. Watson And Rosalie Rayner

Decent Essays

The ‘Little Albert’ experiment was a psychological experiment conducted by John B. Watson and Rosalie Rayner. This experiment was inspired by Ivan Pavlov’s experiment ‘Pavlov’s dog’ which studied the conditioning process in dogs. The Little Albert experiment was created to bring Pavlov’s research further to show how emotional reactions could be classically conditioned in people. In the experiment, Little Albert was presented with various animals including a rabbit, a monkey, and a white rat as well as other stimuli such as masks and burning newspapers. Initially, Albert showed no fear to any of the stimulus. However, the next time Albert was presented the white rat Watson made a loud noise by hitting a metal pipe with a hammer, this …show more content…

Little Albert didn’t nor did his mother give permission to participate in this study. Albert was not of legal age to provide consent for himself and his mother was unaware of the study. They were also not explained withdrawal rights. The experimenter took advantage of Albert being unable to communicate permission or withdrawal rights, he would not have had the physical nor mental capacities to withdraw himself from the study. Watson may not have asked for consent from the mother because he knew there was a chance she wouldn’t give permission and the study couldn’t be conducted. Watson couldn’t ask for permission or explain withdrawal rights to Albert because he was an infant who could not understand or speak with Watson. To do this experiment again and follow this ethical consideration the experimenter should ask for permission from the child’s mother as well as explain withdrawal rights. The mother should also be observing the experiment and be able to withdraw her child whenever she wanted to. An older child who can talk could be selected to be tested on so they can give their consent and be able to withdraw themselves. Little Albert and his mother weren’t informed of the purpose of this study. Albert was too young to speak and understand English and so explaining the purpose would be pointless. The purpose of the study wasn’t explained to the mother because she was unaware the experiment was taking place. If this experiment would

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