Abstract
Metaanalysis typically involves the analysis of summary data (e.g., means, standard deviations, and sample sizes) from a set of studies via a statistical model that is a special case of a hierarchical (or multilevel) model. Unfortunately, the common summarydata approach to metaanalysis used in psychological research is often employed in settings where the complexity of the data warrants alternative approaches. In this article, we propose a thought experiment that can lead metaanalysts to move away from the common summarydata approach to metaanalysis and toward richer and more appropriate summarydata approaches when the complexity of the data warrants it. Specifically, we propose that it can be extremely fruitful for metaanalysts to act as if they possess the individuallevel data from the studies and consider what model specifications they might fit even when they possess only summary data. This thought experiment is justified because (a) the analysis of the individuallevel data from the studies via a hierarchical model is considered the “gold standard” for metaanalysis and (b) for a wide variety of cases common in metaanalysis, the summarydata and individualleveldata approaches are, by a principle known as statistical sufficiency, equivalent when the underlying models are appropriately specified. We illustrate the value of our thought experiment via a case study that evolves across five parts that cover a wide variety of data settings common in metaanalysis.
Original language  English (US) 

Pages (fromto)  8193 
Number of pages  13 
Journal  Advances in Methods and Practices in Psychological Science 
Volume  3 
Issue number  1 
DOIs  
State  Published  Mar 2020 
Keywords
 Betweenstudy variation
 Heterogeneity
 Hierarchical model
 Metaanalysis
 Multilevel model
 Open data
 Open materials
 Random effects
ASJC Scopus subject areas
 Psychology(all)
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McShane_Rev_Supplemental_Material – Supplemental material for Enriching MetaAnalytic Models of Summary Data: A Thought Experiment and Case Study
McShane, B. (Contributor) & Bockenholt, U. (Creator), SAGE Journals, 2019
DOI: 10.25384/sage.11282357, https://sage.figshare.com/articles/McShane_Rev_Supplemental_Material_Supplemental_material_for_Enriching_MetaAnalytic_Models_of_Summary_Data_A_Thought_Experiment_and_Case_Study/11282357
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Enriching MetaAnalytic Models of Summary Data: A Thought Experiment and Case Study
McShane, B. (Contributor) & Bockenholt, U. (Creator), SAGE Journals, 2019
DOI: 10.25384/sage.c.4761131, https://sage.figshare.com/collections/Enriching_MetaAnalytic_Models_of_Summary_Data_A_Thought_Experiment_and_Case_Study/4761131
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