Articles on Scientific method

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Announcement of the Nobel Prize in Economics to Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo and Michael Kremer (from left to right on the screen) during a press conference held at the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences in Stockholm on 14 October 2019. Jonathan Nackstrand/AFP

2019 Nobel Prize in Economics: the limits of the clinical trial method

The 2019 Nobel Prize in Economics pays tribute to randomized control trials, but can they really help us fight poverty?
Putting scientific results under the microscope before they are even collected could help improve science as a whole. Konstantin Kolosov/Shutterstock

Predicting research results can mean better science and better advice

Researchers rarely collect information that lets them to compare their results with what was believed beforehand. If they did, it could help spot new or important findings more readily.
George Christensen and Bob Katter seem to be using the science replication crisis to cast doubt on research findings that farmers don’t like. Mick Tsikas/AAP Image

Real problem, wrong solution: why the Nationals shouldn’t politicise the science replication crisis

Across science, only around half of published results can be successfully replicated. But while this is a serious problem, the proposed public audit looks like a political bid to cast doubt on science.
Caesarean delivery alone does not contribute to the odds of a child developing autism or ADHD. Aditya Romansa

There’s no evidence caesarean sections cause autism or ADHD

A new study has found a link between being born by caesarean section and having a greater chance of being diagnosed with autism or ADHD. But there's no evidence caesarean sections cause them.
Some studies don’t hold up to added scrutiny. PORTRAIT IMAGES ASIA BY NONWARIT/shutterstock.com

The replication crisis is good for science

Rising evidence shows that many psychology studies don't stand up to added scrutiny. The problem has many scientists worried – but it could also encourage them to up their game.
Doubting Thomas needed the proof, just like a scientist, and now is a cautionary Biblical example. Caravaggio/Wikimedia Commons

Yes, there is a war between science and religion

An evolutionary biologist makes the case that there's no reconciling science and religion. In the search for truth, one tests hypotheses while the other relies on faith.
Scientists are facing a reproducibility crisis. Y Photo Studio/shutterstock.com

How big data has created a big crisis in science

Science is in a reproducibility crisis. This is driven in part by invalid statistical analyses that happen long after the data are collected – the opposite of how things are traditionally done.
A new statistical test lets scientists figure out if two groups are similar to one another. paleontologist natural/shutterstock.com

The equivalence test: A new way for scientists to tackle so-called negative results

A new statistical test lets researchers search for similarities between groups. Could this help keep new important findings out of the file drawer?
Most people never have the chance to see how animals live in laboratories. from www.shutterstock.com

Is it time for Australia to be more open about research involving animals?

Since 2012, more than 120 of Britain’s universities, research institutions and pharmaceutical companies have signed a public pledge committing them to greater openness in their animal research programs.
Scientific pursuits need to be coupled with a humanist tradition — to highlight not just how psychedelics work, but why that matters. (Shutterstock)

The real promise of LSD, MDMA and mushrooms for medical science

Once associated with mind-control experiments and counter-cultural defiance, psychedelics now show great promise for mental health treatments and may prompt a re-evaluation of the scientific method.
Academic journals rely on peer review to support editors in making decisions about what to publish. from www.shutterstock.com

When to trust (and not to trust) peer reviewed science

There's peer review – and then there's peer review. With more knowledge you can dive in a little deeper and make a call about how reliable a science paper really is.

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