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Ethics and morality, Professional Practice, Research

Code of Ethics and Conduct

This Code of Ethics is designed to guide all members of the British Psychological Society in their day-to-day professional conduct.

08 December 2021

BPS Guidance

By BPS Ethics Committee

What is the Code of Ethics and Conduct?

This code, which has been produced by the Ethics Committee of the British Psychological Society, focusses on four primary ethical principles:

  • respect
  • competence
  • responsibility
  • integrity

Each of these principles is described by a statement of key values and accompanied by a set of standards which lay out the precise forms of ethical conduct and behaviour which The British Psychological Society expects of its members.

The British Psychological Society sets and upholds high standards of professionalism, and promotes ethical behaviour, attitudes and judgements on the part of members of the Society. Under the terms of its Royal Charter, the Society maintains a Code of Ethics and Conduct; which has been regularly updated prior to this current revision, most recently in 2009. The Society’s Member Conduct Rules require that all members act in accordance with the Code.

In formulating this Code, existing Codes, Society guidance and changes in societal expectations of professionals were considered. This Code is the overarching guidance document for all members of the Society; specific additional guidance is provided in the Code of Human Research Ethics and Practice Guidelines

Download the code

Download the code in Welsh

Undertaking activities on behalf of the BPS?

Many of the society’s members voluntarily contribute their time and expertise to support a wide range of activities. In order to support them, and to assist and guide them in understanding their roles while undertaking work on its behalf, the society has adopted a code of conduct for members undertaking activities on behalf of the society.

View our code for members