[BERG] 6th April- Replication Crisis Discussion

Eoin O'Sullivan eoin.osullivan at stir.ac.uk
Tue Apr 5 10:44:55 BST 2016

Dear BERGers,

We don't have a speaker scheduled this week so we have a nice opportunity to discuss a topic Louise Heron touched upon in her discussion of the "watching eyes effect" last week. As many of you know, there is currently a lot of discussion in the field of psychology (and other scientific fields) about the reliability of supposedly well established psychological phenomena. Much of the debate has focussed on the field of social psychology, but the practices thought to contribute to this "replication crisis" seem to be equally common in many areas of animal research/evolutionary psychology/etc (e.g. underpowered studies, file drawer problem, overreliance on null hypothesis testing, etc.). With this in mind, it might be interesting to discuss some of these factors from the perspective of our own fields. If you would like some more information on this topic here is a short news article which provides plenty of links to other resources:


I have also attached a recent article (Spellman, 2015), and see below for a few questions we might talk around:

1. Could your field face a "replication crisis"?
2. What are the hurdles preventing reliable research and what can we do to overcome them?
3. Is there an important finding in your field that you have found difficult to replicate? Have you published it? If not- why?
4. If you were to organise a "Reproducibility Project" what studies/effects should be considered (https://osf.io/ezcuj/wiki/home/)?

As usual, we will be meeting from 5:20pm in the psychology common room. I look forward to seeing you there!

All the best,

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