• How to interpret science reports more easily.

    Asked by TXHills on Tuesday, May 10, 2016

    How to interpret science reports more easily.

    Confused about what causes cancer? Or climate change? Or what cures it?
    This might help.

    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2016/05/10/john-oliver-teaches-us-how-to-interpret-medical-and-scientific-studies/

    6 Answers from the Community

    6 answers
    • barryboomer's Avatar
      barryboomer

      This is Fantastic...Thanks..

      over 5 years ago
    • geekling's Avatar
      geekling

      Thanx! I adore John Oliver.

      How are you?

      over 5 years ago
    • Sharlie's Avatar
      Sharlie

      I love John Oliver's show. I don't get HBO so I just have to catch stuff when it's shared somewhere. Thanks for this bit of fun today!

      over 5 years ago
    • BoiseB's Avatar
      BoiseB

      I have enjoyed John Oliver on YouTube I think I am subscribed to his channel or some other channel that posts his segments a day or two later.

      over 5 years ago
    • Ejourneys' Avatar
      Ejourneys

      I also love JO -- there's been a lot going on this week, so I have yet to check his YouTube channel. But I will! Thanks for the link!

      over 5 years ago
    • Ejourneys' Avatar
      Ejourneys

      Looooooved the segment! Was nodding throughout (have I mentioned I have a Master of Science degree? One of my favorite experiences in grad school was critiquing published studies that had faulty experimental designs). I have also transcribed expert elicitations, in which several scientists are grilled separately and anonymously for a full day on social policy matters under consideration, and they have at times critiqued each other's work. And trying to align scientific studies with social policy is a whole other can of worms.

      Recommendations:
      Tools for understanding scientific journal articles, from the American Association for Cancer Research:
      http://www.aacr.org/AdvocacyPolicy/SurvivorPatientAdvocacy/Pages/tools-for-understanding-scientific-journal-articles-___2BC59C.aspx#.VzT-IuSzniB
      "Odds Are, It's Wrong" -- terrific article in Science News:
      https://www.sciencenews.org/article/odds-are-its-wrong
      That replication problem Oliver talked about is something my former mentor and I were screaming about 20+ years ago at a conference. Another big problem is that all the studies that prove the null hypothesis (another way of saying no effect was found) tend not to be published at all -- only if something is "found."

      I also recommend the AWESOME Health News Review, which grades all those news stories and press releases:
      http://www.healthnewsreview.org/

      over 5 years ago

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