Posts Tagged ‘ science ’

How to train undergraduate psychologists to be post hoc BS generators

April 3, 2016
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How to train undergraduate psychologists to be post hoc BS generators

Teaching undergraduate psychology is difficult for a variety of reasons. Students come in with preconceived notions about what psychological research is and are sometimes disappointed with the mismatch between their preconceptions and reality. Much of ...

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How to check Likert scale summaries for plausibility

March 30, 2016
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Suppose you are reading a paper that uses Likert scale responses. The paper reports the mean, standard deviation, and number of responses. If we are -- for some reason -- suspicious of a paper, we might ask, "Are these summary statistics possible for t...

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Sitting still against the myth that sitting kills

March 23, 2016
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The fad of standing while working may die hard but science is catching up to it. The idea that standing at work will make one healthier has always been a tough one to believe. It requires a series of premises: Using a standing desk increases the amount of standing Standing longer improves one's health The health improvement is measurable using a well-defined metric The incremental standing is of sufficient amount…

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The state of the art of interactive graphics

March 10, 2016
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The state of the art of interactive graphics

Scott Klein's team at Propublica published a worthy news application, called "Hell and High Water" (link) I took some time taking in the experience. It's a project that needs room to breathe. The setting is Houston Texas, and the subject...

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Continuum between anecdote and data

March 4, 2016
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Continuum between anecdote and data

The difference between anecdotal evidence and data is overstated. People often have in mind this dividing line where observations on one side are worthless and observations on the other side are trustworthy. But there’s no such dividing line. Observations are data, but some observations are more valuable than others, and there’s a continuum of value. I believe […]

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Showing three dimensions using a ternary plot

February 4, 2016
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Showing three dimensions using a ternary plot

Long-time reader Daniel L. isn't a fan of this chart, especially when it is made to spin, as you can see at this link: Like other 3D charts, this one is hard to read. The vertical lines are both good...

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Reproducible randomized controlled trials

February 1, 2016
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Reproducible randomized controlled trials

“Reproducible” and “randomized” don’t seem to go together. If something was unpredictable the first time, shouldn’t it be unpredictable if you start over and run it again? As is often the case, we want incompatible things. But the combination of reproducible and random can be reconciled. Why would we want a randomized controlled trial (RCT) to […]

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New digital feature editorship at the Psychonomic Society

January 19, 2016
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As of January 1, 2016, I am the new methods editor for the Psychonomic Society digital features. Steve Lewandowsky has written an introductory post with a bit of background, and my first post -- about Arsenault and Buchsbaum's recent article in Psychon...

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The failure to replicate scientific findings

January 19, 2016
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Andrew Gelman and I have published a piece in Slate, discussing the failure to replicate scientific findings, using the recent example of the so-called power pose. The idea of the "power pose" is that people develop psychological and hormonal changes by making this "power pose" before walking into business meetings, whereupon these changes make them more powerful. As you often read here and at Gelman's blog, the fact that someone…

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Asymmetric funnel plots without publication bias

January 9, 2016
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Asymmetric funnel plots without publication bias

In my last post about standardized effect sizes, I showed how averaging across trials before computing standardized effect sizes such as partial \(\eta^2\) and Cohen's d can produce arbitrary estimates of those quantities. This has drastic implications...

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