BERD hosts a webinar to help investigators better understand the p-value in research

4/16/2021 11:00:00 AM Hannah Wirth

IHSI’s Biostatistics, Epidemiology, and Research Design (BERD) core team was excited to host its first webinar, “Towards Understanding the P-Value: Has It Lost Its Significance?” at noon on Thursday, April 15. The recording is now available.

In this webinar, Jesus Sarol, PhD, Senior Research Biostatistician in IHSI's BERD core, discussed the common ways that researchers misuse p-values and shared past and recent recommendations on alternatives to the reporting of study results in relation to the role of p-values. Though the webinar was intended for early career researchers who are not yet familiar with the p-value controversy and recent discussions around it, the topic also appealed to more seasoned researchers.

“The changes in the scientific community of their use of p-values are now palpable.  Let’s join the march toward a ‘world beyond p<0.05,’ ” said Sarol.

The BERD team believes the history, misinterpretation, and misuse of p-values is an important topic for the entire research community to understand in order to accurately report study results. More than 200 people registered for this event, including Illinois faculty, postdocs, staff, and students from 13 colleges and schools, 8 institutes, over 40 departments, and 20 non-Illinois participants, demonstrating the broad interest across campus and beyond.

Attendees had the opportunity to learn about using the p-value in the proper context and moving away from dichotomous thinking of significant versus non-significant results.

"Addressing the misinterpretation and misuse of p-values is the major, if not, the most effective way to address the “reproducibility crisis” and change science for the better! We hope that the research community found our reporting recommendations refreshing and abide by the A.T.O.M acronym when conducting research, analyzing data, inferring results, and reporting findings." said Amandeep Kaur, a BERD research biostatistician.

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