- What points do you agree or disagree with in your peers’ assessments of the issues?
- What about their proposed resolutions?
- What other connections do you see between their future career visions and the ethical principles, standards, and codes of conduct you reviewed?
Be sure to provide substantive responses to help your peers build on their learning. Reference any relevant assigned readings, additional resources, or professional literature to support your response.
For this week’s discussion post, I reviewed Situation 2 below the Child and Adolescent Psychology category.
“Manny, a skinny and short 9-year-old, is very quiet in class, which is unusual. Mrs. Sykes notices a bruise on his arm and asks him about it. He says that he walked into a door. When she persists in asking questions, he asks her not to do anything, because he is afraid of what will happen to him. She agrees and lets it go.”
The ethical concern in this situation is that Mrs. Sykes did not find out more information about the bruises and did not report the injuries to child services. According to the American Psychology Association (2020) psychologists should be working to keep their clients safe, and in turn avoid harm. This responsibility is documented in section 3.04 (American Psychology Association, 2020). The bruises on Manny, as well as his fearful reaction indicate that he has been, and will likely continue to be in harm’s way. By not reporting this, Mrs. Sykes is keeping Manny in a harmful situation, which goes against the standards set by the American Psychology Association (2020). This situation is also unethical because when working in a school system, which appears to be the case for Mrs. Sykes, you are a mandated reporter. When a mandated reporter, it is required that you document and report any signs of harm and abuse. Therefore, Mrs. Sykes is required to call child services and report what she saw on Manny.
To resolve this unethical situation, Mrs. Sykes would need to call child services and report the bruises and his fearful demeanor. This ethical standard relates closely to my future career in psychology. Since it is a goal of mine to work in the school system, the idea of mandated reporting is very important for me to understand. The standard of keeping the clients out of harm’s way will also be applicable to my future career since it should always be my goal to keep my students away from any situations which would knowingly bring them harm. This situation was interesting to me because I have some similar past experiences from when I was working in a group home. My role there also required me to report any signs of harm or abuse, so I was curious how a psychologist’s role compared to my previous role.
American Psychological Association. (2020). Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of
Conduct. Retrieved from https://www.apa.org/ethics/code/index