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Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)



First Advisor

Teresa Bergman

First Committee Member

Qingwen Dong

Second Committee Member

Jon Schamber


The Federal Policy for the protection of human subjects in research is built on a positivist ideology which effects Institutional Review Boards (IRB) and the research it reviews. An ideological criticism of the regulations through a positivist and postmodernist perspective reveals its initial purpose for biomedical research and its negative effects on research not discussed during its development. Such effects are a shift in focus on regulation over ethics in IRBs, extended oversight of regulations, revisions in research design and objectives, and self-regulation through the punishment of noncompliance.





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