But will it help?
Reproducing the results of research studies is a vital part of the scientific process. Yet for a number of reasons, replication research, as it is commonly known, is rarely published. Now, a leading journal is adopting a novel way to promote and publish well-designed replications of psychological studies.
Perspectives on Psychological Science, published by the Association for Psychological Science, is launching an initiative aimed at encouraging multi-center replication studies. One of the innovative features of this initiative is a new type of article in which replication study designs are peer-reviewed before data collection.
The new approach is designed to give researchers more incentive to pursue replications, which involve repeating a study using the same methods as the original experiment, but with different subjects. Scientists traditionally have garnered far more credit for publishing novel results rather than verifying earlier published findings.
The goal of the new Perspectives initiative is to help make replication a valued part of daily scientific practice.
According to Barbara A. Spellman, Professor of Psychology at the University of Virginia and Editor of Perspectives, "Some research findings are so important that we should publish high quality replications of them regardless of the outcome. When multiple laboratories coordinate with original study designers to do multiple replications, we can learn about the robustness, generalizability, and effect sizes of noteworthy research.