By Ridge and Will
- In order to experiment with animals, a researcher must hold a licence from the Home Office.
- Alternatives should always be looked for, to see where other experimental objects can be used instead of animals.
- Principles include: only trained anaesthetists administering anaesthetics (substance that induces insensitivity to pain); studies being supervised by senior staff; caging and social environments suiting the species; suffering kept to a minimum; and having time between experiments to allow the animals to recover.
A decision cube can be used when considering whether or not an
experiment is worth carrying out: i.e. whether the outcome benefit
of the experiment justifies the cost of using animals within the
Bateson (1988) suggested using a decision
cube when carrying out a cost-benefit analysis.
Conducted an experiment on attachment using monkeys. Harlow found that for a monkey to develop normally he or she must have some interaction with an object to which they can cling during the first months of life.
Randrup and Munkvad (1966)
Conducted a experiment on schizophrenia in which they found out that inducing rats with amphetamines resulted in them being schizophrenic.
Pavlov showed the existence of the unconditioned response by presenting a dog with a bowl of food and by measuring its salivary secretions. He uncovered classical conditioning.
Randrup and Munkvad (1966)
+Drugs have been developed that would not have without the use of animal studies.
+ Ryder (1973) suggested humans should do everything to improve their own qualities of lives, this is called pro-speciesism), therefore animal studies are good.
- Animals are likely to be stressed by experiments as they:
- are confined more than usual.
- are likely to be in an unfamiliar environments specifically bred for experimental use.
- Not treated well and face a high death risk.
- Singer (1976) suggested though that humans are also animals, so speciesism is like racism.
Reliability and Validity Evaluation.
+ Some such as rats have brain structures similar to humans which increases validity.
+ It is useful to be able to study more than one generation in a short time, which is possible in animals with short gestation periods, but not in humans.
+ Many can be acquired at once so performing the same experiment on them increases reliability and concurrent validity.
- Brain differences in structure and function
- Different genetic structure
- Human lives are complex and rarely occur in isolation
- Diseases being studied have to be artificially replicated in animals which mean they might be different than the actual disease which decreases validity.