Tuesday, May 25, 2010

B - Science fails to face the shortcomings of statistics

Sigfried T. Odds are, it's wrong. Science fails to face the shortcomings of statistics. ScienceNews 2010; 177:7

Science has long been married to mathematics and mathematical methods have been secured science's fidelity to fact and given reliability to findings. Then science was seduced by statistics. The author says that even when performed correctly, statistical tests are widely misunderstood and frequently misinterpreted. The standard statistical system for drawing conclusions is, in essence, illogical. Staticians themselves caution against mistaking statistical significance for practical importance, but scientific papers commit that error often.

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