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Assent, Children’s, in Research

In 1947, the Nuremburg Code stated that the consent of human subjects is essential in research. This code was a response to international outrage over the treatment of individuals in the Nazi concentration camps just before and during World War II. Much subsequent work on consent has its basis in this code, yet children were excluded in what was the first international guidance on ethics in research. Children were not considered to be of sufficient age or maturity to give full consent to research. This assumption is explored and problematized in this entry, which teases out the difference between the terms assent and consent, often used synonymously, highlighting some problems with the issue of assent.

Despite the often interchangeable use of the two terms in research, ...

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