Tag Archives: statistics

When can correlation equal causation?

“Correlation does not equal causation.” It is a phrase that everyone has probably heard, but many people seem to ignore or misunderstand it. Indeed, although useful, the phrase itself can be misleading because it often leads to the misconception that … Continue reading

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Basic Statistics Part 6: Confounding Factors and Experimental Design

The topic of confounding factors is extremely important for understanding experimental design and evaluating published papers. Nevertheless, confounding factors are poorly understood among the general public, and even professional scientists often fail to appropriately account for them, which results in … Continue reading

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No, homeopathic remedies can’t “detox” you from exposure to Roundup: Examining Séralini’s latest rat study

One of my main goals for this blog is to help people learn how to evaluate scientific studies. To that end, I have written several posts that dissect papers and explain either why they are robust or why they are … Continue reading

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Basic Statistics Part 5: Means vs Medians, Is the “Average” Reliable?

To many people, this may seem like the most boring topic in the world, but it is actually vitally important not only for understanding scientific results, but also for understanding much of the data that we are presented with on … Continue reading

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Most scientific studies are wrong, but that doesn’t mean what you think it means

When faced with scientific studies that disagree with them, many people are prone to claim that they don’t have to accept those studies because most scientific studies are actually wrong. They generally try to support this claim by either citing … Continue reading

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Science doesn’t prove anything, and that’s a good thing

It is often the case that the most fundamental concepts in science are the ones that are the most misunderstood, and that is certainly true with the concept of “proof.” Many people accept the misconception that science is capable of … Continue reading

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Does Splenda cause cancer? A lesson in how to critically read scientific papers

Last week, researchers published a paper suggesting that sucralose (Splenda) causes cancer in male mice. This has re-sparked an old debate, and various media outlets have been quick to pounce on the results and flood the internet with articles like, … Continue reading

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