A 2-Day Seminar Taught by Noel Card, Ph.D.

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Meta-analysis is a systematic and statistically defensible approach to synthesizing empirical research literature. This methodology involves comprehensively searching for relevant studies, systematically coding effect sizes and study features, and then combining and comparing results across studies. Meta-analysis is used to advance theory, resolve conflicts, and identify directions for future research.

Meta-analysis is a methodological tool that has become increasingly important since it was developed in the late 1970s. With greater attention to replication and an ever-increasing volume of research results, meta-analytic synthesis has become an essential skill for scholars and scientists across disciplines.

This course will cover the five basic steps of meta-analysis:

  • Selecting a topic appropriate for meta-analysis
  • Searching for relevant literature
  • Evaluating and coding the literature
  • Quantitatively analyzing study results
  • Presenting findings.

In this seminar, we will discuss methods of searching for published and unpublished studies to obtain a set of studies that is as unbiased as possible; we will discuss ways of computing effect sizes from a wide range of reported results; we will consider possibilities for systematically coding study methodology, sample characteristics, and measurement properties; we will discuss fixed- and random-effects models for combining results; finally, we will discuss ANOVA, regression, and more advanced techniques for comparing study results.

By the end of this seminar, participants will learn the necessary tools to conduct a publishable meta-analysis. Participants will also be equipped to understand and critically evaluate meta-analyses that they read. Finally, this seminar can serve as the foundation for learning more advanced topics in meta-analysis.

This is a hands-on course with opportunities for participants to practice the methods they learn. 

Who should attend?        

This course will be valuable for researchers in any field in which meta-analysis is used, including psychology, education, human development, business, and medicine.

Despite misconceptions held by many who are unfamiliar with meta-analysis, the statistical background necessary for performing meta-analytic reviews is fairly minimal (although advanced applications exist). Therefore, the prerequisites for this course are only a sound grasp of ANOVA and correlation/regression techniques.


Students are encouraged to bring a laptop with basic spreadsheet (e.g., MS Excel) and analysis (e.g., SPSS, R) programs installed, as well as copies of a small number of studies that might be part of a meta-analysis they hope to conduct. Although it will not be practical for participants to complete an entire meta-analysis during the seminar, they will have the opportunities to practice the various skills necessary.

Location, Format and materials

The seminar meets Friday, October 23 and Saturday, October 24 at Temple University Center City, 1515 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103. The class will meet from 9 to 5 each day with a 1-hour lunch break. 

Participants receive a bound manual containing detailed lecture notes (with equations and graphics), examples of computer printout, and many other useful features. This book frees participants from the distracting task of note taking. 

Registration and Lodging

The fee of $995 includes all course materials. The early registration fee of $895 is extended until September 25.

Lodging Reservation Instructions

A block of rooms has been reserved at the Club Quarters Hotel, 1628 Chestnut St., Philadelphia, PA at a nightly rate of $147 for a Standard room. This hotel is about a 5-minute walk from the seminar location.  To register, you must call 203-905-2100 during business hours and identify yourself with Statistical Horizons and give the group code STA122 . The room block will expire when it is full or on Tuesday, September 22, 2015. 

Course outline

  • Introduction to meta-analysis
  • Questions that can be answered through meta-analysis
  • Searching the literature
  • Coding study characteristics
  • Effect size computation
    • Basic effect size computation
    • Artifact correction
    • Alternative effect sizes
  • Combining effect sizes
    • Fixed-effects mean
    • Heterogeneity
    • Random-effects mean
  • Comparing effect sizes
    • Categorical moderators
    • Continuous moderators
    • Multiple moderators
    • Mixed-effects
  • Publication bias
  • Writing meta-analysis results 


“I entered this workshop having a limited understanding of meta-analysis. The depth and breadth of the material covered has helped me understand the principles of MA and given me the confidence to try it out.”
  Edward Wahesh, Villanova University 

“This is my first course on meta-analysis. It stressed the advantages of meta-analysis and was a good, stimulating introduction. 
  Finn Von Eyben, Center for Tobacco Control, Denmark