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  • Marcel A. L. M. van Assen
Degrees of Freedom in Planning, Running, Analyzing, and Reporting Psychological Studies: A Checklist to Avoid p-Hacking
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CC BY
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The designing, collecting, analyzing, and reporting of psychological studies entail many choices that are often arbitrary. The opportunistic use of these so-called researcher degrees of freedom aimed at obtaining statistically significant results is problematic because it enhances the chances of false positive results and may inflate effect size estimates. In this review article, we present an extensive list of 34 degrees of freedom that researchers have in formulating hypotheses, and in designing, running, analyzing, and reporting of psychological research. The list can be used in research methods education, and as a checklist to assess the quality of preregistrations and to determine the potential for bias due to (arbitrary) choices in unregistered studies.

Subject:
Psychology
Material Type:
Reading
Provider:
Frontiers in Psychology
Author:
Coosje L. S. Veldkamp
Hilde E. M. Augusteijn
Jelte M. Wicherts
Marcel A. L. M. van Assen
Marjan Bakker
Robbie C. M. van Aert
Date Added:
08/07/2020
Degrees of Freedom in Planning, Running, Analyzing, and Reporting Psychological Studies: A Checklist to Avoid p-Hacking
Unrestricted Use
CC BY
Rating

The designing, collecting, analyzing, and reporting of psychological studies entail many choices that are often arbitrary. The opportunistic use of these so-called researcher degrees of freedom aimed at obtaining statistically significant results is problematic because it enhances the chances of false positive results and may inflate effect size estimates. In this review article, we present an extensive list of 34 degrees of freedom that researchers have in formulating hypotheses, and in designing, running, analyzing, and reporting of psychological research. The list can be used in research methods education, and as a checklist to assess the quality of preregistrations and to determine the potential for bias due to (arbitrary) choices in unregistered studies.

Subject:
Psychology
Material Type:
Reading
Author:
Coosje L. S. Veldkamp
Hilde E. M. Augusteijn
Jelte M. Wicherts
Marcel A. L. M. van Assen
Marjan Bakker
Robbie C. M. van Aert
Date Added:
11/25/2016
Journal Data Sharing Policies and Statistical Reporting Inconsistencies in Psychology
Unrestricted Use
CC BY
Rating

In this paper, we present three retrospective observational studies that investigate the relation between data sharing and statistical reporting inconsistencies. Previous research found that reluctance to share data was related to a higher prevalence of statistical errors, often in the direction of statistical significance (Wicherts, Bakker, & Molenaar, 2011). We therefore hypothesized that journal policies about data sharing and data sharing itself would reduce these inconsistencies. In Study 1, we compared the prevalence of reporting inconsistencies in two similar journals on decision making with different data sharing policies. In Study 2, we compared reporting inconsistencies in psychology articles published in PLOS journals (with a data sharing policy) and Frontiers in Psychology (without a stipulated data sharing policy). In Study 3, we looked at papers published in the journal Psychological Science to check whether papers with or without an Open Practice Badge differed in the prevalence of reporting errors. Overall, we found no relationship between data sharing and reporting inconsistencies. We did find that journal policies on data sharing seem extremely effective in promoting data sharing. We argue that open data is essential in improving the quality of psychological science, and we discuss ways to detect and reduce reporting inconsistencies in the literature.

Subject:
Psychology
Material Type:
Reading
Provider:
Collabra: Psychology
Author:
Coosje L. S. Veldkamp
Jelte M. Wicherts
Jeroen Borghuis
Linda Dominguez-Alvarez
Marcel A. L. M. Van Assen
Michèle B. Nuijten
Date Added:
08/07/2020