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Issues and Debates – The Replication Crisis

5. Issues of Replicability

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About this Lecture


In this fifth lecture, the interrelated nature of validity and reliability is introduced. The first part of this lecture explores the ways in which researchers can replicate studies to test reliability. The afore challenged example link between pizza toppings and psychopathy is used to outline exact and conceptual replication types, before expanding on this with real-world study examples. One hugely famous example of manipulation in replication is Sherif’s Robber’s Cave study. Dr Bouguettaya describes how this failed to find the desired results in its first form, causing Sherif to replicate the study under different conditions as he believed the original result was due to a failure of the experiment. The last part of this lecture highlights a wealth of famous psychology studies which failed the test of either exact or conceptual replication, highlighting the failure of psychological science to update its theories in light of these new outcomes.


In this course, Dr Ayoub Bouguettaya (University of Birmingham) explores a key shortcoming in the field of psychological science – replication. The course starts by introducing the concept of replication and defining science in terms of three key criteria: reliable and valid theory which can predict outcomes, theories that can be disproven by quantifiable experimentation, and theories that are altered or withdrawn in the light of new findings. Lecture two explores reliability and outlines three core issues facing psychological science: quantifiable measures, theories that cannot be disproven, and unrefined theories. Lectures three and four explore the definition of validity, its variety of forms, and the challenges associated with formulating valid research. The fifth lecture highlights the interrelatedness of validity and reliability, as well as returning to this idea of replication and the many famous studies which have failed either conceptual or exact replication. The sixth and final lecture addresses the ways in which the field of psychology is tackling these problems and concludes on two different perspectives on whether psychology can be considered a true science.


Dr Ayoub Bouguettaya is a lecturer in the School of Psychology at the University of Birmingham. His research centres around social psychology and how knowledge from that field can be applied to others, particularly health. Dr Bouguettaya is interested in how we can apply social identity theory to societal problems, as well as investigating the different perspectives one might taken on those issues. His recent publications have spanned a breadth of topics including social identification, eating behaviours, conspiracy theories, and behavioural economics.

Cite this Lecture

APA style

Bouguettaya, A. (2021, November 24). Issues and Debates – The Replication Crisis - Issues of Replicability [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

Bouguettaya, Ayoub. "Issues and Debates – The Replication Crisis – Issues of Replicability." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 30 Nov 2021,