In the Read

Ethically researching with children and young people

This week’s In the Read is on ethical research and ethics approvals for research with children and young people. A recent Child Family Community Australia article discussed the main ethical considerations for incorporation into research or evaluation projects involving children: consent and assent; informed consent; the power dynamics between adults and potential child research participants; and that consent is an ongoing not one-off event in which the child must know they can withdraw as well as how to withdraw from the research. There are links to papers and other resources, including a handbook that provides guidance on understanding consent in research with children.

There is also a link to an article about demystifying ethical review, but applies to researching with children. Information is provided about the ethical review process and how it may apply to those outside of a ‘research organisation’. The principles of conducting ethical research – respect, research merit, justice, beneficence – are described and examples are given about how to apply the principles and when to seek ethical review and approval for involving humans in research. Again links are included, for example, to the National Health and Medical Research Council’s (NHMRC) National Statement on Ethical Conduct in Human Research.

The Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services (AHRECS) offer commentary on a foundational consideration, Ethical research with young children: Whose research, whose agenda?. The article asserts that while much child research claims to be with children rather than onfor or about them, the research is “typically driven by agendas of research productivity, performativity and empirical leverage of research within policy and provision for young children – by and for adults.” Consequently some children, families and communities experience the over-burden of research.

Another AHRECS article considers the ethics and the participation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in social research. Noting the absence of a comprehensive and unified framework beyond the National Statement on Ethical Conduct in Human Research, the NHMRC’s Values and Ethics: Guidelines for Ethical Conduct in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Research, and the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies Guidelines for Ethical Research in Australian Indigenous Studies, readers are referred to the author’s thesis which offers a child rights-based approach informed by Indigenous research methodologies using child friendly and culturally sensitive social research methods.

Anti-Poverty Week 2022

Anti-Poverty Week 2022 has seen the release of numerous publications reporting on poverty in Australia and its impact. Take the…

Read More

A path forward for anti-discrimination law in Queensland

The final report and recommendations of the QHRC’s Review of Queensland’s Anti-Discrimination Act were tabled in state parliament on 1st…

Read More

Report into institutional child sexual abuse reforms

On Friday, 8th April 2022, the Queensland Government tabled its fourth annual report into the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual…

Read More

Submit a Comment

Young voices needed to shape Queensland’s Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy

If your organisation has a youth reference or advisory group, this is a great opportunity for their voices to be…

Read More

Care experienced Youth Advisory Group to be appointed in Queensland

Youth Advisory Group to be appointed as key outcome of Queensland’s Residential Care Review, updated HSQF soon applicable, PeakCare’s new…

Read More

DCSSDS Motor Vehicle Safety Guidelines – FAQs and Clarifications

In late 2023, the Department of Child Safety, Seniors and Disability Services released the Motor Vehicle Safety – Guidelines for Child…

Read More