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<p>The goal of this project was to conduct high-powered and precise replications of key findings from Gervais & Norenzayen (2012) which showed both correlational and experimental evidence that analytic thinking decreases religious belief.</p> <p>Gervais, W. M., & Norenzayan, a. (2012). Analytic Thinking Promotes Religious Disbelief. Science, 336(6080), 493–496. doi:10.1126/science.1215647</p> <p>This project is now complete. A manuscript describing this project is now available here: </p> <p>Sanchez, C., Sundermeier, B., Gray, K., & Calin-Jageman, R. J. (2017). Direct replication of Gervais & Norenzayan (2012): No evidence that analytic thinking decreases religious belief. PLOS ONE, 12(2), e0172636. <a href="http://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0172636" rel="nofollow">http://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0172636</a></p> <p>The final data file for the experiment is here: <a href="https://osf.io/4xubj/" rel="nofollow">https://osf.io/4xubj/</a></p> <p>The manuscript reports <em>one</em> of our two replication attempts. Specifically, it reports our replication of Study 2: - Experimental study - visual priming - We replicated Study 2 from G&N (2012) with 4 different samples: online (MTurk), at a private Catholic university, at a private Lutheran university, and at a public community college. As in the original study, participants were primed for analytic thinking by presenting 4 visual stimuli for 30s each (images of the statue "The Thinker" or control images of "Discobolus"). Participants were then asked to rate their belief in G-d on a scale from 0 to 100. The key finding in the original study was that those who were primed for analytic thinking were substantially less prone to express a belief in god. In our replication we found little to no effect of priming analytic thinking on religious belief.</p> <p>The manuscript does <em>not</em> report our <em>conceptual</em> replication of G&N's correlational study. It ended up being too different from the original study, making it difficult to interpret. In addition, subsequent direct replications of this correlation have pretty conclusively shown that a weak negative correlation does exist between these two constructs. - Correlational study - alternative reasoning task -- we repeated Study 1 from G&N (2012) with an MTurk sample but using an alternative analytic reasoning task (syllogism task) because MTurk samples have a high familiarity with the analytic thinking task used by G&N (2012). This study is now complete. We found that performance on the syllogism task did not show the expected moderate negative correlation with intrinsic religiosity (r = -0.02, 95% CI [-0.12, 0.08], N = 383), nor with intiutive religious belief (r = -0.04, 95% CI [-0.14, 0.06], N = 383), nor with belief in supernatural agents (r = -0.10, 95% CI [-0.20, 0.001], N = 383). Note that although these correlations are in the expected direction, all of them are much much weaker than expected. The original findings were -0.22, -0.15, and -0.18, respectively. Only the correlation with supernatural agents has the original finding in its 95% CI. A limitation of this replication, though, is that it used syllogistic reasoning rather than the cognitive-reflection test...this was because the CRT has been tremendously over-used with MTurk and would not provide a valid measure. It is possible, though, that we obtained different results because of the change in measure, though this would raise questions about what it is, exactly, that is supposed to be negatively correlated with relgious belief. Our sample size was adequately powered to detect correlations of the expected magnitude, but did not reach the 2.5x standard suggested by Simonsohn to be informative even about the weakest correlations readily detectable in the original study (original N = 179, our ratio is 2.13x rather than 2.5x).</p> <p>This project initially planned to complete a direct replication of Study 1 (correlational study) with an online sample. This was not done however because a) the experimental findings show no effect, b) additional research has called into question the construct validity of the experimental manipulations, and c) replications of the correlational finding have been conducted and reported by others.</p> <h3>Current project stage -- Complete</h3> <p><strong>Completed:</strong> - Materials created - Replication checklist completed and uploaded to files section. - Materials sent to original authors for feedback and issues resolved - All materials posted to OSF</p> <p><strong>Resolved issues:</strong> - <em>Study 1: Anchors for religious belief scales</em>. Reported as 1-7 in email communication with lead author.</p> <ul> <li> <p><em>Study 2: Cover story for viewing images and for next task</em>. Updated to mini-studies and possible questions about images based on email from lead author.</p> </li> <li> <p><em>Study 2: Image pacing</em>. Updated to enforced 30s viewing based on email with lead author.</p> </li> <li> <p><em>Study 2: Measure of Belief in God from 0-100</em>. Updated question text and type based on email from lead author.</p> </li> <li> <p><em>Both studies: Exclusions</em>. Updated based on email with lead author.</p> </li> </ul>
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