Some Short Notes on Statistics

Gerd Gigerenzer writes (in a paper 10 years ago):

“Most researchers, [a prominent textbook author] argued, are not really interested in statistical thinking, but only in how to get their papers published.”

The article offers an idiosyncratic, interesting and to my mind an agreeable yet discomforting view of the historical development of the NHSTP–Null Hypothesis Significance Testing Procedure–and its perils.

It’s full of interesting historical trivia, such as R.D. Luce’s comment on NHSTP:

“[The NHSTP ritual represents] mindless hypothesis testing in lieu of doing good research: measuring effects, constructing substantive theories of some depth, and developing probability models and statistical procedures suited to these theories”


But that was 10 years ago. Now that research integrity is in the spotlight, things are much better. We all care about things like uncertainty and sampling variance. Scientists pursue the Truth relentlessly, ignoring trivialities like personal hygiene and careers; journalists convey accurate summaries of recent findings; and so forth.

Matti Vuorre
Postdoctoral Researcher

Postdoctoral Researcher at the Oxford Internet Institute