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Thursday, October 12
Sponsoring, Disseminating, and Replicating Research in the 21st Century
Thu, Oct 12, 8:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Regency Ballroom IV
Statistical Training Needs to Address Cognitive Limitations and Biases

Statistical Training Needs to Address Cognitive Limitations and Biases (304110)

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*Sander Greenland, University of California, Los Angeles 
*Blake McShane, Northwestern University 

Methodologic training appears to aggravate or induce cognitive and motivational biases in statistical inferences. The extent of the problem is exhibited by persistent misinterpretations of "nonsignificant" hypothesis tests and confidence intervals as proving null hypotheses. Teaching correct definitions seems to have been insufficient to address this problem, and it can be argued that concepts from cognitive psychology are needed to reduce statistics abuse. Further improvements may include developing and teaching of correct interpretations for inferential statistics that do not rely on probability for their understanding. This session will present and discuss proposals for basic statistics based on these ideas, including coverage of biases implicit in conventional methodology and interpretations, and information-theoretic interpretation of inferential statistics.