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Turning the Lens of Science on Itself

Perspectives on Psychological Science 9(5)
Schooler, J.W. University of California,
Santa Barbara, CA, USA
2014 Consciousness, Foundations

This issue of Perspectives on Psychological Science reports an unprecedented replication effort entailing numerous independent laboratories conducting two versions of the verbal overshadowing paradigm (Schooler & Engstler-Schooler, 1990) using different timing intervals.

The results (Alogna et al., 2014, this issue) provide unequivocal support for the existence of verbal overshadowing—the finding that describing a previously seen face can impair its subsequent recognition—while simultaneously revealing a number of factors that may have contributed to challenges in replicating verbal overshadowing in the past.

In this commentary, I review my participation in this process and consider the implications of the results of this replication effort for verbal overshadowing, the decline effect, and the general goal of metascience: turning the lens of science onto itself.

The article was published in: Perspectives on Psychological Science 9(5): 579-584.

Full article

This work was supported (in part) by the Fetzer Franklin Fund of the John E. Fetzer Memorial Trust.