Doctoral Training in Statistics, Measurement, and Methodology in Psychology: Replication and Extension of Aiken, West, Sechrest, and Reno's (1990) Survey of PhD Programs in North America

Leona S. Aiken, Stephen West, Roger E. Millsap

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

93 Scopus citations

Abstract

In a survey of all PhD programs in psychology in the United States and Canada, the authors documented the quantitative methodology curriculum (statistics, measurement, and research design) to examine the extent to which innovations in quantitative methodology have diffused into the training of PhDs in psychology. In all, 201 psychology PhD programs (86%) participated. This survey replicated and extended a previous survey (L. S. Aiken, S. G. West, L. B. Sechrest, & R. R. Reno, 1990), permitting examination of curriculum development. Most training supported laboratory and not field research. The median of 1.6 years of training in statistics and measurement was mainly devoted to the modally 1-year introductory statistics course, leaving little room for advanced study. Curricular enhancements were noted in statistics and to a minor degree in measurement. Additional coverage of both fundamental and innovative quantitative methodology is needed. The research design curriculum has largely stagnated, a cause for great concern. Elite programs showed no overall advantage in quantitative training. Forces that support curricular innovation are characterized. Human capital challenges to quantitative training, including recruiting and supporting young quantitative faculty, are discussed. Steps must be taken to bring innovations in quantitative methodology into the curriculum of PhD programs in psychology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)32-50
Number of pages19
JournalAmerican Psychologist
Volume63
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2008

Keywords

  • measurement
  • quantitative curriculum
  • research design
  • statistics
  • training

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)

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