Essay Example on Scientific reproducibility is the extent to which scientific data and results can be Replicated








Scientific reproducibility is the extent to which scientific data and results can be replicated using the same methods outlined by the original researchers Reproducibility is important for adding support and meaning to scientific findings and is the reliability of a finding Significant results are meaningless if they cannot be replicated because that would imply that the original results were obtained due to error or chance Systematic and or random errors can result in the lack of reproducibility of a study If the methods and conditions that the original researchers utilized are not clearly specified this could also cause issues for replication of the study False positives and negatives are also possibilities and can jeopardize the integrity of the results The issue of reproducibility is not unique to Psychology but is a constant topic throughout all branches and fields of scientific research If the original researchers are not completely transparent in their methods this could result in problems with reproducibility Random and systematic errors present in a study can result in faulty data and the inability to replicate the results Other unforeseen factors such as environmental effects could impact the results obtained and the observation of the original finding Obtaining results that are actually false positives or negatives can also jeopardize the integrity of the results and their reproducibility Results that cannot be replicated can indicate that the original results were obtained due to error or that the original researchers were not entirely transparent in their methods

This could be due to such factors as selective reporting selective analysis and other factors that could bias results You can infer from a failed replication that something is amiss with the methods and conditions outlined in the original study or with the replication study You could also infer that there are unforeseen factors contributing to the observed results Failure to replicate a study could be due to a number of things In order to promote generalizability of the study and decrease selection biases the researchers established a sampling frame and selection process for determining which studies to replicate The selection frame included 2008 articles published in one of the three journals Psychological Science Journal of Experimental Psychology Learning Memory and Cognition and Journal of Personality and Social Psychology The sampling frame was determined in this manner to establish a quasi random sample and to minimize bias in the reproducibility estimates The three journals were chosen because they are very prestigious and important in the field of psychology and also because they would allow for studies across various disciplines in psychology to be chosen that would be inexpensive and realistic to replicate

The year 2008 was determined because it is current enough to allow for the original authors to be contacted and original materials obtained but also allowed for enough time to have passed to determine the influence of the article and findings The researchers and project coordinators also matched research teams with studies that aligned with their area of research proficiency For every article that was matched only one study and one research finding were replicated and analyzed The results of this report showed that the majority of studies that were replicated produced weaker results seen through comparison of effect sizes and P values compared to the original data For each article that was chosen for replication only one study and only one finding within that study were investigated for reproducibility Also it is possible that there may have been some selection bias since only feasible inexpensive and more simplistic studies were chosen for replication 

This article gave insight into the importance of reproducibility overall and the need for reliability of results It showed that significant results should not be taken at face value and that further studies should be conducted to try and replicate the results and provide further evidence These findings do not suggest that the original studies were correct or were incorrect Instead it shows that further investigation and exploration of these hypotheses and findings are necessary to determine the validity of the results Researchers can be transparent with their methods and all their data and try not to be selective in their analysis and reporting The article also emphasized the need for researchers and especially editors to not disregard studies that appear to be unoriginal because they focus on a topic or scientific question that has already been published There is a need for replicated results and studies to show the degree of reproducibility and reliability of the original results There is also a need for the publication of studies that do not produce significant results These findings would allow the scientific community to see what has been tried in the past and how to possibly improve and build upon these studies The publication bias that is present in all fields of science is limiting and deterrent to progress The authors of this article bring up a very profound point when they stated that there is a need for both innovation and replication within all aspects of scientific research If we are constantly in search of novel findings and not also in pursuit of supporting evidence of past findings then science will not progress

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