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Thoughts about how to use HIBAR (had I been a reviewer) in teaching.

December 12, 2013

In the spring, I’ll be teaching the advanced social psychology course again, with a handful of my colleagues. They are student led seminar classes – your basic grad school seminar style – and they are a lot of fun. The student responsible focus on part of the chapter (we are using Taylor & Fiske, which is great, but incredibly dense), and to bring in original literature in their presentation. The literature must be of empirical work – no reviews – as we want them to engage more with how things actually are done.

In the past (due to circumstances beyond our control – read the former dean of the social science faculty) we covered T & F in 2 weeks. Exhilarating and completely exhausting.

As we then wrested control back to ourselves, we now spread T & F over several weeks. So, I figure, it is time to get more serious about looking at the data. I want the students to not only present, but to pick apart and ask, is their conclusions really reasonable, given the evidence? Because one of the problems, I think, is that you get so into the narrative, and very little into the actual calibration, that it is easy to believe in what is really fairy-tales.

I think, as inspiration, I’m going to use Dan Simons HI-BAR idea.   Several of these critical looks at papers are collected in the HIBAR blog.

Two that have yet to make it onto that blog (but likely will) are this one from James Thompson  on whether talking to children really affects their intellect. (N = 29? Correlation? Vague controlling for IQ? Researchers, you have to get better at controlling for individual differences). And this one from Rolf Zwaan testing out the nifty p-hacking app. 

I actually suggested to the Masters Students group that they should use Rolf’s 50 question post, and the original paper, for a journal club meeting, and evidently that ended up being quite successful. If students can do this for themselves, we should be able to incorporate it in our classes.

From → Teaching

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