Human resource development professionals' perceptions about the Academy of Human Resource Development Standards on Ethics and Integrity

Silvana Ianinska, Florida International University


Professional standards of ethics proclaim the core values of a profession, describe expected professional duties and responsibilities, and provide a framework for ethical practice and ethical decision-making. The purpose of this mixed, quantitative and qualitative, survey study was to examine HRD professionals' perceptions about the AHRD Standards on Ethics and Integrity, how HRD professionals used the Standards for research and decision-making, and the extent to which the Standards provided guidance for ethical decision-making. Through an on-line survey instrument, 182 members of AHRD were surveyed. The open-ended questions were analyzed using thematic analysis to expand on, inform, and support the quantitative findings. The close-ended questions were analyzed with frequency distributions, descriptive statistics, cross tabulations, and Spearman rank correlations. The results showed a significant relationship between (a) years of AHRD membership and level of familiarity with the Standards, (b) years of AHRD membership and use of the Standards for research, and (c) level of familiarity with the Standards and use of the Standards for research. There were no significant differences among scholars, scholar practitioners, practitioners, and students regarding their perceptions about the Standards. The results showed that the Standards were not well known or widely used. Nevertheless, the results indicated overall positive perceptions about the Standards. Seventy percent agreed that the Standards provided an appropriate set of ethical principles and reflected respondents' own standards of conduct. Seventy-eight percent believed that the Standards were important for defining HRD as a profession and 54% believed they were important for developing a sense of belonging to the HRD profession. Fifty-one percent believed the Standards should be enforceable and 61% agreed members should sign the membership application form showing willingness to adhere to the Standards. Seventy-seven percent based work-related ethical decisions on personal beliefs of right and wrong and 56% on established professional values and rules of right and wrong. The findings imply that if the professional standards of ethics are to influence the profession, they should be widely publicized and discussed among members, they should have some binding power, and their use should be encouraged.

Subject Area

Adult education

Recommended Citation

Ianinska, Silvana, "Human resource development professionals' perceptions about the Academy of Human Resource Development Standards on Ethics and Integrity" (2008). ProQuest ETD Collection for FIU. AAI3319005.