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, 140 (5), 1272-1280

Meta-analyses and P-Curves Support Robust Cycle Shifts in Women's Mate Preferences: Reply to Wood and Carden (2014) and Harris, Pashler, and Mickes (2014)

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Meta-analyses and P-Curves Support Robust Cycle Shifts in Women's Mate Preferences: Reply to Wood and Carden (2014) and Harris, Pashler, and Mickes (2014)

Kelly Gildersleeve et al. Psychol Bull.

Abstract

Two meta-analyses evaluated shifts across the ovulatory cycle in women's mate preferences but reported very different findings. In this journal, we reported robust evidence for the pattern of cycle shifts predicted by the ovulatory shift hypothesis (Gildersleeve, Haselton, & Fales, 2014). However, Wood, Kressel, Joshi, and Louie (2014) claimed an absence of compelling support for this hypothesis and asserted that the few significant cycle shifts they observed were false positives resulting from publication bias, p-hacking, or other research artifacts. How could 2 meta-analyses of the same literature reach such different conclusions? We reanalyzed the data compiled by Wood et al. These analyses revealed problems in Wood et al.'s meta-analysis-some of which are reproduced in Wood and Carden's (2014) comment in the current issue of this journal-that led them to overlook clear evidence for the ovulatory shift hypothesis in their own set of effects. In addition, we present right-skewed p-curves that directly contradict speculations by Wood et al.; Wood and Carden; and Harris, Pashler, and Mickes (2014) that supportive findings in the cycle shift literature are false positives. Therefore, evidence from both of the meta-analyses and the p-curves strongly supports genuine, robust effects consistent with the ovulatory shift hypothesis and contradicts claims that these effects merely reflect publication bias, p-hacking, or other research artifacts. Unfounded speculations about p-hacking distort the research record and risk unfairly damaging researchers' reputations; they should therefore be made only on the basis of firm evidence.

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