Quick Thoughts

Confirmation bias in JAMA Psychiatry article concerning neighborhood-level variation in risk of psychosis

This article represents a good teaching example of confirmation bias, whereby weak findings are interpreted as consistent with the dominant view in the literature.

Evaluating personality and social psychology research as clinical trials

We could better keep bad science out of an already untrustworthy literature if there were clearer and more widely disseminated standards for conducting and reporting research

The RCT of tango dancing versus mindfulness meditation for depression

If you aren't happy with your life, should you take up mindfulness meditation or some other activity – like tango dance?

Unlocking paywalled research papers: Two big steps forward, two steps back

Some innovations make easier to get open access versions of paywalled articles. But for-profit publishers want to keep readers dependent on paywalled articles and pay for access.

A bad abstract is good enough to be published in Journal of Experimental Psychology: General

Readers deserve an informative abstract, but uninformative abstracts that leave out key details of a study can often succeed in getting published in prestigious journals.

Null trial of cognitive behavioral therapy for psychosis given positive spin in British Journal of Psychiatry

Study of cognitive behavioral therapy for schizophrenia with null findings spun as positive in British Journal of Psychiatry

CBT versus psychodynamic therapy for depression: One sentence changes the whole story

One sentence changes the whole story of a comparison between cognitive and psychodynamic therapy for depression.

Too much ado about church attendance and suicide rates among women

Widely publicized study of church attendance and suicide is less impressive than it first looks.

Needed: more informative and trustworthy abstracts. Recommendations for some simple reforms.

An analysis of an uninformative, seriously spun abstract chosen from PLOS One shows why we need guidelines for writing and interpreting abstracts.  With so much to read, and so little time, readers need to be able to quickly screen abstracts and decide whether articles are worth putting further effort into retrieving them.  More informative, trustworthy […]