Why is BBC Lab UK doing the 'Test Your Morality' experiment?
Scientists are trying to explain why humans experience moral responses to certain situations. They want to know what factors (like background and life circumstances) affect a person’s view of right and wrong, and why it is that people differ in their perception of how ‘wrong’ different types of moral offence are. By taking part in the experiment, you will be helping scientists answer these questions.
You can find out more in our article: About 'Test Your Morality'.
Who designed 'Test Your Morality?'
The experiment was designed by Dr Val Curtis and Dr Robert Aunger of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine in collaboration with BBC Lab UK.
Find our more about the origins of the test on the 'Test Your Morality' credit page.
Who will have access to my data?
The data gathered through the 'Test Your Morality' experiment will be analysed by Dr Val Curtis and Dr Robert Aunger of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. The data they receive will contain no personally identifying information such as names, email addresses or full postcodes. It will be completely anonymous.
The results from BBC Lab UK tests and experiments are a valuable resource for science and education. In the future, BBC Lab UK may allow access to data by trusted scientists and academics for educational and non-commercial research purposes. In all cases, the data received will be anonymous and contain no personally identifying information.
When and how will the results of the experiment be made available?
The full results of the experiment will be published on the BBC Lab UK website by Spring 2013.
Why do I have to be over 18?
The scientific measures used in this experiment are only valid for people aged 18 and over.
Can I drop out of the 'Test Your Morality?' experiment
You can end your participation at any time by simply closing your browser or navigating away from 'Test Your Morality.' If you wish to go further and delete data stored in the BBC Lab UK database you can email us, and your data will be excluded from the test immediately and deleted permanently within 28 days of your request.
However, it will not be possible to remove your data once it has been collected and sent in its anonymous format to the scientists for analysis. This is because once the data is passed over to the scientists, there remain no means of identifying the individual to whom the data belongs.
How were the scenarios in 'Test Your Morality' chosen?
The 'Test Your Morality' experiment is designed to look at a new theory – based on something called ‘Human Superorganism Theory’. These theories states that human society behaves like a single, huge organism with a range of different functions such as reproduction, communication and waste removal. All the scenarios in the test involve someone either damaging or failing to support one of these functions. They were chosen so that all the different functions are covered.
The scenarios vary in other respects such as how many people are involved and whether the offence is committed in public or private. These variations will allow our scientists to discover more about what features of a situation affect a person’s moral response to it.
The scenarios were chosen by Dr Val Curtis and Dr Robert Aunger of the London School of Hygeine and Tropical Medicine in collaboration with BBC Lab UK.
What else is being measured?
Our scientists want to find what other factors are associated with a person’s perception of right and wrong. For example, our scientists would like to find out whether a person’s occupation or where they live is related to the type of act which they find morally offensive.
So that they can do this, the test includes some questions about your background and life circumstances.
Getting background information is also important because it will allow our scientists to determine whether their results apply generally, or only to particular groups.
What should I do if I’m worried about my results?
'Test Your Morality' may help you better understand your own moral code, but it is not designed to be used for identifying or diagnosing personal problems. If, however, you are concerned by anything your have read or heard in your results, you can seek help or advice by following this link:
What is BBC Lab UK?
BBC Lab UK is a BBC website where you can participate in groundbreaking scientific experiments online. BBC Lab UK works with leading scientists to conduct experiments that can only work with a very large number of participants. We promise to:
Find our more on the Lab UK homepage .
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