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The Philosophy of Quantitative MethodsUnderstanding Statistics$
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Brian D. Haig

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780190222055

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190222055.001.0001

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Tests of Statistical Significance

Tests of Statistical Significance

(p.41) 3 Tests of Statistical Significance
The Philosophy of Quantitative Methods

Brian D. Haig

Oxford University Press

Chapter 3 provides a brief overview of null hypothesis significance testing and points out its primary defects. It then outlines the neo-Fisherian account of tests of statistical significance, along with a second option contained in the philosophy of statistics known as the error-statistical philosophy, both of which are defensible. Tests of statistical significance are the most widely used means for evaluating hypotheses and theories in psychology. A massive critical literature has developed in psychology, and the behavioral sciences more generally, regarding the worth of these tests. The chapter provides a list of important lessons learned from the ongoing debates about tests of significance.

Keywords:   statistical significance tests, null hypothesis significance testing, neo-Fisherian perspective, error-statistical perspective, statistical pragmatism

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