30 November 2018
Replicating a study isn’t easy. Just knowing how the original was conducted or having access to a similar sample of experimental participants isn’t enough.
As psychological researchers have known for a long time, all sorts of subtle cues can affect how individuals respond in experimental settings. A failure to replicate, then, doesn’t always mean that the effect being studied isn’t there – it can simply mean the new study was conducted a bit differently.
Many Labs 2, a project of the Center for Open Science at the University of Virginia, embarked on one of the most ambitious replication projects in psychology yet – and did so in a way designed to address these sorts of critiques, which have in some cases hampered past efforts.