Moderating Role of the Format of Confidentiality Dilemma Presentation on the Relationship Between Utilitarianism and the Propensity to Waive Confidentiality
Although the study of moral judgment has gained in popularity in the field of psychology in recent years, little research has focused on confidentiality dilemmas in the context of moral judgment. Yet clinicians regularly face such dilemmas, which often arise in emotionally charged contexts. This study assesses the role of emotions in responses to these confidentiality dilemmas. A total of 186 participants studying psychology at different universities in Quebec were randomly assigned to one of three groups in an experimental design (dramatic audio modality, neutral audio modality, text modality) and responded to confidentiality dilemmas by choosing between protecting or lifting confidentiality. Also taken into consideration were participants’ positioning on a continuum ranging from deontology to utilitarianism, based on their response to sacrificial dilemmas. The hierarchical multiple linear regression model used indicates a significant contribution from responses to sacrificial dilemmas, perceived emotional intensity of confidentiality dilemmas and training obtained in the field of ethics and deontology. The analysis further reveals the moderating effect of exposure to the experimental condition on the relationship between the tendency towards utilitarianism and the propensity to waive confidentiality in a psychotherapeutic relationship. These results have practical implications for psychology curricula, where situation scenarios with ecological validity could enhance ethics training.
Copyright (c) 2023 Guillaume Chailler, Michael Cantinotti, Bastien Trémolière
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