Regression to the Mean Does Not Explain Away Nonconscious Processing: A Critical Review of Shanks 2017

Asael Y. Sklar*, Ariel Goldstein, Ran R. Hassin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

In studies that use subliminal presentations, participants may become aware of stimuli that are intended to remain subliminal. A common solution to this problem is to analyze the results of the group of participants for whom the stimuli remained subliminal. A recent article (Shanks, 2017) argued that this method leads to a regression to the mean artifact, which may account for many of the observed effects. However, conceptual and statistical characteristics of the original publication lead to overestimation of the influence of the artifact. Using simulations, we demonstrate that this overestimation leads to the mistaken conclusion that regression to the mean accounts for nonconscious effects. We conclude by briefly outlining a new description of the influence of the artifact and how it should be statistically addressed.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)130-136
Number of pages7
JournalExperimental Psychology
Volume68
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Hogrefe Publishing GmbH. All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • Regression to the mean
  • nonconscious processes
  • subliminal

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