Statistical Inference and the Replication Crisis

Review of Philosophy and Psychology 12 (1):121-147 (2018)
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The replication crisis has prompted many to call for statistical reform within the psychological sciences. Here we examine issues within Frequentist statistics that may have led to the replication crisis, and we examine the alternative—Bayesian statistics—that many have suggested as a replacement. The Frequentist approach and the Bayesian approach offer radically different perspectives on evidence and inference with the Frequentist approach prioritising error control and the Bayesian approach offering a formal method for quantifying the relative strength of evidence for hypotheses. We suggest that rather than mere statistical reform, what is needed is a better understanding of the different modes of statistical inference and a better understanding of how statistical inference relates to scientific inference.

Author's Profile

Lincoln Colling
Cambridge University


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