In a groundbreaking study that involved about 100 scientists from countries around the world who have tried to replicate the findings of 270 findings that found mention in highly ranked psychology journals. Only 36% turned up with the same results. In other words, it meant that half the studies, when researchers tried to replicate using the same methodology, did not give similar results.
The report published in the journal Science evoked a wide response on social media, and internet was deluged with remarks like how ‘social’ and ‘science’ did not belong in the same sentence.
The response from within the scientific community was varied. There were small pockets of dissatisfaction and indignation there was a sense of relief. One of the many reasons put by psychologists was that the mentors of the study were new and fellow researchers and not critics.
Alan Kraut, who is the executive director of the Association for Psychological Science, feels that it looks like we are coming out clean. Such corrections are something that has to happen across the science and it is heartening that psychology is leading the charge.
Jelte Wicherts, Associate Professor in the department of statistics and methods at the University of Tilburg in the Netherlands, felt that some of the results were too good to be true and this fact was well known to everyone.
Jelte added that today researchers share all the data on request without any checks and put everything on the web before sending out their papers for review.
Stricter procedure for submitted papers was put into place by the Association for Psychological Science and the Psychonomic Society after a well-known Dutch social psychologist was caught faking data in 2011.
An effort has been started by some journals including Perspectives on Psychological Science to redo some of the studies to check if they come up with the same results.