Tag Archives: statistics

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

Posted in Nature of Science, Rules of Logic | Tagged , , , | 7 Comments

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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Understanding the reported risks of medicines, foods, toxic chemicals, etc.

We are constantly bombarded with news reports and claims like, “A new study found that chemical X increases your risk of disease Y by 100%” or “doing X makes you twice as likely to have Y,” but what do those … Continue reading

Posted in Nature of Science, Vaccines/Alternative Medicine | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

The hierarchy of evidence: Is the study’s design robust?

People are extraordinarily prone to confirmation biases. We have a strong tendency to latch onto anything that supports our position and blindly ignore anything that doesn’t. This is especially true when it comes to scientific topics. People love to think … Continue reading

Posted in Nature of Science | Tagged , , | 6 Comments