Next Article in Journal
Fiscal Challenges in Multilayered Unions: An Overview and Case Study
Previous Article in Journal
Migrant and Non-Migrant Families in Chengdu, China: Segregated Lives, Segregated Schools
Article Menu

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Soc. Sci. 2015, 4(2), 361-372; doi:10.3390/socsci4020361

Persistent Confusions about Hypothesis Testing in the Social Sciences

Department of Mathematics, Texas A&M University-Central Texas, 1001 Leadership Place, Killeen, TX 76549, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Martin J. Bull
Received: 24 December 2014 / Revised: 11 March 2015 / Accepted: 27 April 2015 / Published: 12 May 2015
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [240 KB, uploaded 12 May 2015]

Abstract

This paper analyzes common confusions involving basic concepts in statistical hypothesis testing. One-third of the social science statistics textbooks examined in the study contained false statements about significance level and/or p-value. We infer that a large proportion of social scientists are being miseducated about these concepts. We analyze the causes of these persistent misunderstandings, and conclude that the conventional terminology is prone to abuse because it does not clearly represent the conditional nature of probabilities and events involved. We argue that modifications in terminology, as well as the explicit introduction of conditional probability concepts and notation into the statistics curriculum in the social sciences, are necessary to prevent the persistence of these errors. View Full-Text
Keywords: statistics; hypothesis testing; inference; p-value; significance; conditional probability; conditional event statistics; hypothesis testing; inference; p-value; significance; conditional probability; conditional event
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

SciFeed Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Thron, C.; Miller, V. Persistent Confusions about Hypothesis Testing in the Social Sciences. Soc. Sci. 2015, 4, 361-372.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Soc. Sci. EISSN 2076-0760 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top