[Rasch] [FRIENDS-OF-PP] Fwd: Do Positive Psychology Exercises Work? A Replication of Seligman et al.

Michael Lamport Commons commons at tiac.net
Wed Aug 15 18:12:33 EST 2012


Tan important point but there are other kinds of controls, such as 
matched ones.  But more importantly is the size of the improvement.  
This can be measured fundamentally different ways.  Traditionally, one 
would use regression and treatment or not as predictors and get an r.  
Following test theory, one would design an outcome measure and collect 
and Rasch analyze the results for the two groups. The size of the change 
can be expressed in logits or the mean difference in logits divided by 
the SD logit

My Best,

Michael Lamport Commons, Ph.D.
Assistant Clinical Professor

Department of Psychiatry
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
Harvard Medical School
234 Huron Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138-1328

Telephone   (617) 497-5270
Facsimile   (617) 491-5270
Cellular    (617) 320–0896
Commons at tiac.net
http://dareassociation.org/


On 8/14/2012 10:31 PM, wjencke wrote:
> sorry only half message went through
>
> second half is
>
> that way you are comparing oranges with oranges - not oranges with lemons
>
> On 15/08/2012, at 12:28 PM, wjencke <wjencke at IINET.NET.AU 
> <mailto:wjencke at IINET.NET.AU>> wrote:
>
>> the problem is the placebos used by pp are inert - with a pill there 
>> is expectancy that it will work
>>
>> that was the plus of the study - a positive placebo
>>
>>
>>
>> On 15/08/2012, at 11:32 AM, Jeremy McCarthy 
>> <jeremymccarthy at HOTMAIL.COM <mailto:jeremymccarthy at HOTMAIL.COM>> wrote:
>>
>>> I'm not a scientist, so take what I say with a grain of salt, but it 
>>> seems to me that Wayne and Acacia are both correct.  A placebo 
>>> control works really well when you are trying to determine the 
>>> difference between an external intervention (like a pill) and the 
>>> body's ability to self-heal.  You administer the physical 
>>> intervention (e.g. a pill) to one group, and a psychological 
>>> intervention (a pill with inert physical effects) to the other 
>>> group.  But when you are trying to measure the effect of a 
>>> psychological intervention you are forced to compare one 
>>> psychological intervention to another.  So now you are comparing one 
>>> type of self-healing to another, so the distinctions will never be 
>>> as clear (to Acacia's point, it is messier than we would like it to 
>>> be).  PP is kind of like a placebo because it drives self-healing 
>>> and now the messy part is to determine which interventions create a 
>>> stronger "placebo effect" than others.  This all depends on how you 
>>> define a "placebo," but I'm just not sure you can define something 
>>> as an inert placebo in a psychological intervention, you can only 
>>> compare different conditions and look for different outcomes.
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> Jeremy McCarthy
>>> twitter: @jeremymcc <http://twitter.com/jeremymcc>
>>> blog: http://psychologyofwellbeing.com
>>>
>>>
>>> > Date: Tue, 14 Aug 2012 16:42:28 -0400
>>> > From: acaciaparkssheiner at GMAIL.COM 
>>> <mailto:acaciaparkssheiner at GMAIL.COM>
>>> > Subject: Re: [FRIENDS-OF-PP] Fwd: Do Positive Psychology Exercises 
>>> Work? A Replication of Seligman et al.
>>> > To: FRIENDS-OF-PP at LISTS.APA.ORG <mailto:FRIENDS-OF-PP at LISTS.APA.ORG>
>>> >
>>> > I wouldn't go that far. I think it's more evidence that the transition
>>> > between the lab and the real world is messier than we would like. What
>>> > works in the lab may not work in the real world the first time we try
>>> > it for myriad reasons, including:
>>> >
>>> > 1) It isn't that engaging so people don't do it without an incentive
>>> > (class credit, money, candy, social capital, etc.)
>>> >
>>> > 2) People may do it incorrectly (for example, in the iPhone dataset,
>>> > we found goal setting was popular but not that helpful to people,
>>> > despite lots of literature that suggests that it should be helpful; we
>>> > speculated that this might be because in the absence of oversight,
>>> > people were choosing goals that were either too easy to be inspiring
>>> > or so difficult that they were discouraging).
>>> >
>>> > 3) People may change the activity in ways that reduce its efficacy
>>> > (practicing it not often enough, for example)
>>> >
>>> > The list goes on. Nobody takes an intervention to the real world and
>>> > has it translate perfectly. Dissemination is an iterative process.
>>> >
>>> >
>>> > On Tue, Aug 14, 2012 at 3:53 PM, wjencke <wjencke at iinet.net.au 
>>> <mailto:wjencke at iinet.net.au>> wrote:
>>> > > its worth reading the paper that acacia kindly provided. the 
>>> attrition rate is important but the broader issue is superiority of 
>>> the replication.
>>> > >
>>> > > reading this my takehome message is that pp might be nothing 
>>> more than a well thought through placebo
>>> > >
>>> > > On 15/08/2012, at 4:50 AM, Acacia Parks 
>>> <acaciaparkssheiner at GMAIL.COM <mailto:acaciaparkssheiner at GMAIL.COM>> 
>>> wrote:
>>> > >
>>> > >> In the particular dataset I am referencing (the replication 
>>> study that
>>> > >> was part of my dissertation), retention (i.e. who actually 
>>> completed
>>> > >> their surveys) for the control group was consistent with the 
>>> average
>>> > >> across conditions (about 75% from pre-post, with things getting 
>>> worse
>>> > >> as time goes on out to the 1-year follow-up, where average 
>>> retention
>>> > >> was around 35%). Some PP activities had higher retention, and 
>>> some had
>>> > >> lower, but the early memories control was right in the middle.
>>> > >>
>>> > >> When it comes to actual compliance (i.e. who reported actually 
>>> DOING
>>> > >> the activity), the control group was definitely lower than the rest
>>> > >> (57.1%; PP activities ranged from 62.5-89.1%). Perhaps people 
>>> had read
>>> > >> the news articles and seen that it was a control, so they knew. Or
>>> > >> perhaps people were just benefitting less so they didn't use it.
>>> > >>
>>> > >> One thing I didn't mention before is the pattern of data in the
>>> > >> control group. Data in the control condition bounced all over the
>>> > >> place. They got better, then worse, then better, then worse 
>>> across the
>>> > >> time points. My in-person datasets look pretty calm by comparison -
>>> > >> the control group just stays the same. This control group was much
>>> > >> noisier than that. Way more variation among controls than in 
>>> any other
>>> > >> condition. And not less data, interestingly. They did their
>>> > >> questionnaires as well as everyone else.
>>> > >>
>>> > >>
>>> > >> On Tue, Aug 14, 2012 at 2:36 PM, Tim LeBon <timlebon at gmail.com 
>>> <mailto:timlebon at gmail.com>> wrote:
>>> > >>> Acacia
>>> > >>> Was there a difference in drop-out depending on the intervention?
>>> > >>>
>>> > >>> Kind regards
>>> > >>> Tim
>>> > >>>
>>> > >>> On 14 August 2012 14:58, Acacia Parks 
>>> <acaciaparkssheiner at gmail.com <mailto:acaciaparkssheiner at gmail.com>> 
>>> wrote:
>>> > >>>>
>>> > >>>> These data are consistent with my own attempts to replicate 
>>> Seligman,
>>> > >>>> Steen, Park & Peterson (2005). I did what was, as far as I 
>>> can tell,
>>> > >>>> an exact replication of the study and got no significant 
>>> findings on
>>> > >>>> any of several measures (including the two measures used in the
>>> > >>>> original study). It's not that the exercises don't work as 
>>> expected -
>>> > >>>> they do. It's that the control groups "work," too. I found 
>>> this for
>>> > >>>> both the "early memories" and the "take the via by itself" 
>>> control
>>> >
>>> >
>>> >
>>> > --
>>> >
>>> > =================
>>> > Acacia Parks, Ph.D.
>>> > Assistant Professor of Psychology
>>> > Hiram College
>>> > P.O. Box 67
>>> > Hiram, OH 44234
>>> >
>>> > Associate Editor
>>> > Journal of Positive Psychology
>>> > email: parksac at hiram.edu <mailto:parksac at hiram.edu>
>>> >
>>> > Check out my blog at Psychology Today:
>>> > http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-science-self-help
>>> >
>>> > ---------------------------------------------------------------------
>>> >
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