Wednesday, July 4, 2007

List of sad things reviewers and journal editors say

Journal reviewers (and even editors-in-chief) sometimes say things that are jaw-dropping. Here are some examples (I paraphrase here, of course):

1. The p-value (for some paired comparison) is not low enough to justify publication of the result.
2. A previous experiment showed the opposite result from yours, hence your experimental result is not credible. Variant: do a second experiment, so that our confidence in your result increases.
3. Since the authors do not use a standard method for statistical analysis, and since I do not understand the new method, I recommend rejecting the paper.

We are lucky that we psycholinguists do research that cannot result in anyone actually dying.

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