American Journal of Applied Psychology
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American Journal of Applied Psychology. 2019, 7(1), 1-10
DOI: 10.12691/ajap-7-1-1
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Prediction of Protocol Approval in a Mock Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee: Evaluation of Type of Research Protocol, Species, and Evaluator Characteristics

David M. Compton1, , Kerri L. Dietrich2, Victoria A. Randall1, and Rachel E. Green1

1Department of Psychology, Palm Beach Atlantic University, West Palm Beach, FL, USA

2Department of Mathematics, Paxton School, Paxton, FL, USA

Pub. Date: January 15, 2019

Cite this paper:
David M. Compton, Kerri L. Dietrich, Victoria A. Randall and Rachel E. Green. Prediction of Protocol Approval in a Mock Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee: Evaluation of Type of Research Protocol, Species, and Evaluator Characteristics. American Journal of Applied Psychology. 2019; 7(1):1-10. doi: 10.12691/ajap-7-1-1


Research concerning using animal models that may ultimately benefit the health and well-being of human beings continues to receive substantial but not unequivocal support. Rather, considerable ambivalence driven by attitudes, personality characteristics, and misperceptions about animal research continue to exist. In the present study, individuals comprising various sectors of the academic community (undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, and staff) as well as recruits from the general population were presented with a mock research proposal that varied by goals and species. As part of a fictitious Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC), the participants were asked to review the protocol and render a decision to either approve or reject the research proposal. In addition, the participants were queried about the perceived importance of the project, the suffering of the animals, and the amount of perceived scientific detachment from the animals. Lastly, the participants answered a series of items from a research-derived Perceptions about the Use of Animals Scale and the Emotional Intelligence Scale (EIS). Consistent with other research, female respondents were much less accepting of the research protocols than males. Protocol approval rates varied by the research objectives and the species, with research projects seen as having lower biomedical value such as psychology student training and the use of certain species (chimps & cats), generally receiving less support. The ethical issues associated with the use of animals in experiments is briefly considered as well as the need for additional messaging on role of animal research, particularly in the behavioral sciences.

animal research animal rights emotional intelligence biomedical research behavioral research attitudes

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