ERIC Number: ED075473
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1972
Reference Count: N/A
The Ethical Issues of Privacy, Confidentiality and Privileged Communication.
Nunnelly, Diane T.
School psychologists and other educators should be concerned about the issues of confidentiality, privacy and privileged communication in regard to school records such as psychological reports and intelligence test scores. Confidentiality relates to matters of professional ethics, privileged communication refers to legal rights, and privacy is a more general term for some of the individual's rights. Violation of the clinet's professional confidences outside the courtroom can result in: (1) disciplinary action and professional sanctions by the APA; (2) disciplinary action by the State licensing authority; (3) legal action if damage to the client results; and/or (4) legal action if breach of confidentiality is construed as defamatory. Problems can be created in maintaining confidentiality through loss or theft of records or the misuse of computerized psychological data on individuals. It has been suggested that schools consider categorizing confidential data and periodically destroying certain data. The client legally has the right to obtain test information and records, as have parents, which is considered by some as a possibility for misuse. The protection of privacy in tests for experimental research involves relevance to the purposes of the testing and informed consent. The criticism of invasion of privacy has been aimed at personality tests used in nonclinical settings. The most frequent misuse of tests of minority group members stems from misinterpretation of scores. Ethical responsibilities should be emphasized in graduate training. (For related documents, see TM 002 548-550, 552-559.) (KM)
Descriptors: Civil Liberties, Confidential Records, Confidentiality, Ethics, Intelligence Tests, Legal Problems, Legal Responsibility, Literature Reviews, Psychological Testing, Seminars
Not available separately; see TM 002 548
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at Doctoral Seminar, University of Georgia, Fall 1971