Promises and Pitfalls of Modern Meta-Analysis

Amy Dent, Ph.D.

Research Assistant Professor, MAP Academy
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2014-2015 Methodology Applications Series

Presentation 6

Meta-analysis provides a unique opportunity to systematically and objectively integrate decades of research asking the same broad question, reconciling previous findings by uncovering factors that influence their magnitude or even direction. From selecting a research question to interpreting results, even subtle methodological decisions during a meta-analysis can have important substantive implications. Methodological and substantive researchers should thus work closely together to ensure these decisions are appropriate in both regards. This presentation will introduce the essential steps for conducting a methodologically rigorous and substantively sound meta-analysis by discussing some of its innovative promises and common pitfalls.