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assessing research quality

UndeniableReality
Posts: 1,897
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2/5/2015 4:41:55 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 2/3/2015 7:00:51 PM, Garbanza wrote:
What's the best way of assessing research quality? Does anyone know?

It depends on the field, but generally, get a PhD in the field you're reading about =P

A degree or solid education in statistics will make you realize how crappy a lot of papers are in a lot of fields. Generally, scientists are pretty well educated, so those papers don't get a lot of traction.

All in all, your question is much to vague for a more specific answer, in my opinion.
Garbanza
Posts: 1,997
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2/5/2015 9:52:54 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 2/5/2015 4:41:55 PM, UndeniableReality wrote:
At 2/3/2015 7:00:51 PM, Garbanza wrote:
What's the best way of assessing research quality? Does anyone know?

It depends on the field, but generally, get a PhD in the field you're reading about =P

A degree or solid education in statistics will make you realize how crappy a lot of papers are in a lot of fields. Generally, scientists are pretty well educated, so those papers don't get a lot of traction.

All in all, your question is much to vague for a more specific answer, in my opinion.

Yes it was vague. At my university it's assessed based on publications, citations, impact factors etc., and I think a lot of people find that system really undesirable for lots of reasons. So I was wondering if anyone knew of a better way.
UndeniableReality
Posts: 1,897
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2/5/2015 11:21:33 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 2/5/2015 9:52:54 PM, Garbanza wrote:
At 2/5/2015 4:41:55 PM, UndeniableReality wrote:
At 2/3/2015 7:00:51 PM, Garbanza wrote:
What's the best way of assessing research quality? Does anyone know?

It depends on the field, but generally, get a PhD in the field you're reading about =P

A degree or solid education in statistics will make you realize how crappy a lot of papers are in a lot of fields. Generally, scientists are pretty well educated, so those papers don't get a lot of traction.

All in all, your question is much to vague for a more specific answer, in my opinion.

Yes it was vague. At my university it's assessed based on publications, citations, impact factors etc., and I think a lot of people find that system really undesirable for lots of reasons. So I was wondering if anyone knew of a better way.

The quality of a researcher is sometimes assessed H-index and similar measures , but it is generally understood to convey only a surface level assessment. To some extent, the quality of a paper can be measured by journal, citation count and the quality of papers that cite it. But again, this is not what defines the quality of a research paper.

There is no standard way of assessing research quality. As one gains more expertise in a field, they become better at assessing the quality of research involving that field.

If you're asking how a layperson can assess research quality, using the measures above are a good start. A layperson would also want to educate themselves Popperian scientific philosophy, and for most scientific disciplines, statistics (study mathematical statistics if you want to understand it at all), so that you can better judge the strength of the methods and results versus the strengths of the conclusions. The ideal scientific paper will make all of its claims and findings precise and sufficiently qualified. The claims should be made conservatively and with respect to the conditions under which they were tested.
UndeniableReality
Posts: 1,897
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2/7/2015 2:29:35 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 2/6/2015 4:40:32 AM, Garbanza wrote:
Thanks. That's an interesting answer. I might have been thinking about it in the wrong way.

I hope it was helpful. It's not an easy question to answer.