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Calibrated Bayes factors should not be used: a reply to Hoijtink, van Kooten, and Hulsker

Morey, Richard D. ORCID:, Wagenmakers, Eric-Jan and Rouder, Jeffrey N. 2016. Calibrated Bayes factors should not be used: a reply to Hoijtink, van Kooten, and Hulsker. Multivariate Behavioral Research 51 (1) , pp. 11-19. 10.1080/00273171.2015.1052710

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Hoijtink, Kooten, and Hulsker (2016 Hoijtink, H., van Kooten, P., & Hulsker, K. (2016). Why Bayesian psychologists should change the way they use the Bayes factor. Multivariate Behavioral Research, 51, 1--9. doi: 10.1080/00273171.2014.969364. [Taylor & Francis Online], [Web of Science ®], , [Google Scholar] ) present a method for choosing the prior distribution for an analysis with Bayes factor that is based on controlling error rates, which they advocate as an alternative to our more subjective methods (Morey & Rouder, 2014 Morey, R.D., & Rouder, J.N. (2014). Bayesfactor: Computation of Bayes factors for common designs. R package version 0.9.9. Retrieved from [Google Scholar] ; Rouder, Speckman, Sun, Morey, & Iverson, 2009 Rouder, J.N., Speckman, P.L., Sun, D., Morey, R.D., & Iverson, G. (2009). Bayesian t-tests for accepting and rejecting the null hypothesis. Psychonomic Bulletin and Review, 16, 225–237. doi: 10.3758/PBR.16.2.225 [Crossref], [PubMed], [Web of Science ®], , [Google Scholar] ; Wagenmakers, Wetzels, Borsboom, & van der Maas, 2011 Wagenmakers, E.-J., Wetzels, R., Borsboom, D., & van der Maas, H. (2011). Why psychologists must change the way they analyze their data: The case of psi. A comment on Bem (2011). Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 100, 426–432. doi: 10.1037/a0022790 [Crossref], [PubMed], [Web of Science ®], , [Google Scholar] ). We show that the method they advocate amounts to a simple significance test, and that the resulting Bayes factors are not interpretable. Additionally, their method fails in common circumstances, and has the potential to yield arbitrarily high Type II error rates. After critiquing their method, we outline the position on subjectivity that underlies our advocacy of Bayes factors.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
ISSN: 0027-3171
Date of Acceptance: 16 February 2016
Last Modified: 02 Nov 2022 11:53

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