Bras. Political Sci. Rev.. 01/Jun/2014;8(2):133-6.
Comments on When is Statistical Significance not Significant?
(FIGUEIREDO FILHO, Dalson. B. et al. When is statistical significance not significant? Brazilian Political Science Review. Vol. 07, Nº 01, 2013)
An article titled “When is statistical significance not significant?” was published in this journal. The study echoes countless others which have underlined the dangers of wrongly interpreting the p-value (see for an overview of such studies). The authors’ main goal is to provide a basis for understanding the logic behind tests of significance and their appropriate role in empirical studies within the social sciences. For this, the authors present four recommendations with universalistic intents: 1) to always graphically analyze data before interpreting the p-value; 2) it is pointless to estimate the p-value for non-random samples; 3) the p-value is highly affected by the sample size; and 4) it is pointless to estimate the p-value when dealing with data on population.