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Posted by on Jun. 9, 2013 at 2:31 PM
  • 37 Replies
3 moms liked this

I'm getting tired of seeing people "research" on here. Its quite painfully obvious that half of you are ignorant to the subject so here I've writen a "how to."

I think the first step is realzing the difference between fact and opinion. 

Fact: "something that actually exists; reality; truth"

You can not argue with facts. Of course there are gray areas when it comes to certain topics. Refer to below where I will show you how to find legitimate studies. 

Opinion:  "a belief or judgment that rests on grounds insufficient to produce complete certainty. 

Opinions are beliefs with no facts to back them up. You can have opinions, thats fine but don't get mad when someone shows you facts to prove you wrong.


How to Research Properly:

"Properly" being the key word here. To start lets list the no no's. If you want to find fact to back up your opinion this is what not to do:

-Do not use wikepedia. Though its a great source to know "what happened when" and "who did this" it just can not be used in an argument. Even elementry school students are not allowed to use it.

- Do not use blogs. Blogs are opinion based. Enoguht said?

- If you are convincing people that drugs are "Bad" do not use drugsarebad.com. Those websites are bias. They chose and pick studies to prove their point. They often miss key information.

- You should not use studies or research that is older than 5 years. Science is constantly changing. Its not the worst to use something a little older but I would not go past 2004.

- Do not use govrenment websites. Although govrenment websites can have awesome information they do have flaws. The reccomendations they have must apply to the masses. One of the reasons they cannot reccoment co-sleeping is because its not safe for everyone. Therefor people automatically assume it is unsafe which is not always the case. Think about it.

- If an anti drug research campain is done by a cigarette company or an alchohol company I would probably avoid it. They do not want competition in the money making world so they will come from a bias stand point.

-One of the my biggest recommendations is do not use google. If you are attending university use dtatabases for research. If you are not use google scholar. Everything else is not nessisarily correct.

-Do not use articles with no citations (or citations that are very outdated)

- Do not use studies where they used a very small sample size (under 1000 people) or a very shor period of time (less than a year)

- Do not use studies where they only looked at one area such as a school district in Vancouver Washington. 

- Do not use articles that are not scholarly or peer reviewed.

-Try to avoid studies where the author is not an expert in the feild 


^^ if you avoid doing all this than you can probably find a legit study to prove your opinion is fact.


One of my biggest pet peeves on here is when people say that we cannot trust studies because science is always changing ans studies can be easily manipulated. We can trust science we just have to know how to read studies and analyize research. Sometimes that means giving up everything you learned and were taught. If there is a huge amount of studies all pointing to the same thing it is fact. 


If you have any more pointers add them :) I had to di this quickly so I probably left out a lot!!

by on Jun. 9, 2013 at 2:31 PM
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Replies (1-10):
Retrokitty
by Jasmyne on Jun. 9, 2013 at 2:33 PM
Sorry for all the spelling mistakes!
Kmakksmom
by Stefanie on Jun. 9, 2013 at 2:38 PM
This is good to know. I just want to point out that not all schools think like that about Wikipedia. It is always the first source that our daughters' schools put when giving examples of reliable sources for essays and reports. We have elementary, middle, and high school students in our family.
Delila12
by Gold Member on Jun. 9, 2013 at 2:38 PM
You can still find studies on google. You would just have to pay for most of them.
momo3fgr8tteens
by on Jun. 9, 2013 at 2:40 PM

Lol, unfortunately what you said is true. I laugh when I read something and then go to the source and it is a bias or unreliable source. Research can be slanted one way or another though, unless it is empirical research using measurable research data.  Statistics can often be misleading as well, so you have to understand statistics in order to understand research.

Delila12
by Gold Member on Jun. 9, 2013 at 2:40 PM
That's somewhat true. Wikipedia is more of a secondary or third source. My professors use to tell us to scroll down to the bottom of the page where they list references and use those.

Quoting Kmakksmom:

This is good to know. I just want to point out that not all schools think like that about Wikipedia. It is always the first source that our daughters' schools put when giving examples of reliable sources for essays and reports. We have elementary, middle, and high school students in our family.
Elle.tea.22
by Emerald Member on Jun. 9, 2013 at 2:41 PM
Love this post.
Retrokitty
by Jasmyne on Jun. 9, 2013 at 3:23 PM
I know Wikipedia ha changed a lot and there is now "verifiable" articles.

I do use Wikipedia it is just not valid research. For example when I was studying attachment theory the articles were a but hard to read so I studied it on Wikipedia first and then wrote my paper with reliable articles. In elementary and middle I think its an okay source but in high school they should be giving more reliable sources but I know its not always possible.


Quoting Kmakksmom:

This is good to know. I just want to point out that not all schools think like that about Wikipedia. It is always the first source that our daughters' schools put when giving examples of reliable sources for essays and reports. We have elementary, middle, and high school students in our family.
Retrokitty
by Jasmyne on Jun. 9, 2013 at 3:28 PM
That's what I was told to.

Quoting Delila12:

That's somewhat true. Wikipedia is more of a secondary or third source. My professors use to tell us to scroll down to the bottom of the page where they list references and use those.



Quoting Kmakksmom:

This is good to know. I just want to point out that not all schools think like that about Wikipedia. It is always the first source that our daughters' schools put when giving examples of reliable sources for essays and reports. We have elementary, middle, and high school students in our family.
Retrokitty
by Jasmyne on Jun. 9, 2013 at 3:45 PM
Bump
idunno1234
by Gold Member on Jun. 9, 2013 at 3:47 PM
2 moms liked this

Any study, any statistics can be skewed in unknown ways.   Most people do not have the time or inclination to examine in detail every study's methodologies and variables to try to come to any accurate conclusion regarding validity.   Most people also don't have the time and inclination to even read most studies because most of them are a lot of words and statistical analysis to prove something that most of us would think is common sense.  Few studies claim as fact anything but the interpretation of the limited scope of that particular study, even as they may extrapolate.

A lot of times I google just to find an article that refutes something that someone posted, just to show them that as strongly as they believe they posted something that proves their point, there is something out there almost inevitably that will refute it.  Its a way of casting doubt on the black and white that some tend to paint things and make people realize (to those who are actually open to the idea) that all information from any source is open to scrutiny. 

Casting doubt on entrenched ideas, even if its just a little bit can only be a good thing.  Maybe, just maybe it will open minds to other possibilities and allow more people to question, rather than letting them keep the luxury of thinking they have to be right, no matter how much evidence there may be to the contrary.

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