Null Hypothesis Significance Testing and Czech Social Work – Mapping Review of Quantitative Research

Jan Kaňák

OBJECTIVES: The text aims to answer the question: How is used the NHST concept in Czech social work quantitative research papers? THEORETICAL BASE: Debate related to using the principles of Null Hypothesis Significance Testing is present since the 1920s’, particularly in the psychological and sociological framework. The recent development of the debate highlighted the problematic nature of this approach. In the Czech this debate is conduct also in the psychological and sociological areas, but not in the context of social work. The text would like to bring this issue into the context of social work. METHODS: The article conceives as a literature review, more specifically as a mapping review. Research papers included in the study were searched manually in selected professional journals according to chosen criteria. OUTCOMES: Quantitative studies account for the knowledge base of social work for about 1/6. Approximately half of the articles use elements of statistical inference (NHST, effect size, CI). However, 8 out of 108 analyzed papers used parts of alternative methods to NHST. SOCIAL WORK IMPLICATIONS: The outputs, as well as the theoretical part of the article, can be seen as a contribution to the discussion on research in social work, more specifically as a contribution to the debate on the use of quantitative research framework and NHST. It can serve practicing social workers in the context of strengthening the skill of being informed research readers.

social work, NHST, p-value, quantitative research

p. 107-126

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