Many Labs 5: Registered Replication Report of LoBue & DeLoache (2008)

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Across three studies, LoBue and DeLoache (2008) provided evidence suggesting that both young children and adults exhibit enhanced visual detection of evolutionarily relevant threat stimuli (as compared with nonthreatening stimuli). A replication of their Experiment 3, conducted by Cramblet Alvarez and Pipitone (2015) as part of the Reproducibility Project: Psychology (RP:P), demonstrated trends similar to those of the original study, but the effect sizes were smaller and not statistically significant. There were, however, some methodological differences (e.g., screen size) and sampling differences (the age of recruited children) between the original study and the RP:P replication study. Additionally, LoBue and DeLoache expressed concern over the choice of stimuli used in the RP:P replication. We sought to explore the possible moderating effects of these factors by conducting two new replications—one using the protocol from the RP:P and the other using a revised protocol. We collected data at four sites, three in Serbia and one in the United States (total N = 553). Overall, participants were not significantly faster at detecting threatening stimuli. Thus, results were not supportive of the hypothesis that visual detection of evolutionarily relevant threat stimuli is enhanced in young children. The effect from the RP:P protocol (d = −0.10, 95% confidence interval = [−1.02, 0.82]) was similar to the effect from the revised protocol (d = −0.09, 95% confidence interval = [−0.33, 0.15]), and the results from both the RP:P and the revised protocols were more similar to those found by Cramblet Alvarez and Pipitone than to those found by LoBue and DeLoache.

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Lazarević, L. B., Purić, D., Žeželj, I., Belopavlović, R., Bodroža, B., Čolić, M. V., Ebersole, C. R., Ford, M., Orlić, A., Pedović, I., Petrović, B., Shabazian, A., & Stojilović, D. (2020). Many Labs 5: Registered Replication Report of LoBue & DeLoache (2008). Advances in Methods and Practices in Psychological Science, 3, 377-386. doi.org/10.1177/2515245920953350