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Research practices that can prevent an inflation of false-positive rates

Murayama, K., Pekrun, R. and Fiedler, K. (2014) Research practices that can prevent an inflation of false-positive rates. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 18. pp. 107-118. ISSN 1532-7957

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1177/1088868313496330

Abstract/Summary

Recent studies have indicated that research practices in psychology may be susceptible to factors that increase false-positive rates, raising concerns about the possible prevalence of false-positive findings. The present article discusses several practices that may run counter to the inflation of false-positive rates. Taking these practices into account would lead to a more balanced view on the false-positive issue. Specifically, we argue that an inflation of false-positive rates would diminish, sometimes to a substantial degree, when researchers (a) have explicit a priori theoretical hypotheses, (b) include multiple replication studies in a single paper, and (c) collect additional data based on observed results. We report findings from simulation studies and statistical evidence that support these arguments. Being aware of these preventive factors allows researchers not to overestimate the pervasiveness of false-positives in psychology and to gauge the susceptibility of a paper to possible false-positives in practical and fair ways.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Department of Psychology
Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Language and Cognition
Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Social
ID Code:34935
Uncontrolled Keywords:Type 1 error, false-positives, optimal stopping, replication
Publisher:Sage

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