Comment on Meehl's (1978) "Theoretical risks and tabular asterisks: Sir Karl, Sir Ronald, and the slow progress of soft psychology"

William M. Grove

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debatepeer-review

Abstract

A serious problem with Popperian falsificationism in the presence of auxiliary hypotheses and experimental conditions, in addition to a theory under test, is raised by Meehl. In brief, a negative result endangers both the theory in question, and the auxiliary hypotheses; which should we reject? I discuss how considering series of studies, rather than a single study, helps make this problem somewhat more tractable. I treat situations where negative results are in hand, as well as situations where positive results may be discounted by skeptics who question auxiliary hypotheses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)31-34
Number of pages4
JournalApplied and Preventive Psychology
Volume11
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2004

Keywords

  • Risky tests
  • Significance tests
  • Soft psychology

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