Subject Pool Policies in Undergraduate-Only Departments: Results from a Nationwide Survey

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Contribution to Books

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Psychology has long relied on and been committed to empirical research. Indeed, empiricism is the foundation and hallmark of the discipline. Psychologists' understanding of human behavior has come largely from the study of humans -- oftentimes student recruits from a college or university human subject pool (HSP). Although the estimates vary (see Kulich, Seldon, Richardson, & Servies, 1978), it seems clear that the great majority of results of human studies published in the literature has come from subject pool participants. Given the dual responsibility on this resource and the protection of human subjects, it seems prudent to understand in better detail the policies and procedures that lead to the availability of this resource -- opportunity, and also to understand how the HSP policies and procedures may affect the outcomes of the studies conducted.

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