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Friday, January 24, 2020

Psychology accused of ‘collective self-deception’ over results

Image result for psychology as scienceJack Grove
The Times Higher Education
Originally published 10 Dec 19

Here is an excerpt:

If psychologists are serious about doing research that could make “useful real-world predictions”, rather than conducting highly contextualised studies, they should use “much larger and more complex datasets, experimental designs and statistical models”, Dr Yarkoni advises.

He also suggests that the “sweeping claims” made by many papers bear little relation to their results, maintaining that a “huge proportion of the quantitative inferences drawn in the published psychology literature are so inductively weak as to be at best questionable and at worst utterly insensible”.

Many psychologists were indulging in a “collective self-deception” and should start “acknowledging the fundamentally qualitative nature of their work”, he says, stating that “a good deal of what currently passes for empirical psychology is already best understood as insightful qualitative analysis dressed up as shoddy quantitative science”.

That would mean no longer including “scientific-looking inferential statistics” within papers, whose appearance could be considered an “elaborate rhetorical ruse used to mathematicise people into believing claims they would otherwise find logically unsound”.

The info is here.