I want to calculate effect sizes for running a meta-analysis. I am interessted in the difference between two groups after a treatement. In the papers included for the meta-analysis I often find the mean and standard deviation for each group, as well as (for example) t-values. In this case, the estimated effect size for the study varies - depending if I use the means and standard deviations for calculation of the t-test.

Which one would be the appropriate estimate - the one calculated based on means or the one calculated based on the t-value?


  • $\begingroup$ Can you edit to give us some more detail? At the moment it is not clear what calculations you are doing to derive the standardised mean difference via either route. $\endgroup$ – mdewey Nov 24 '20 at 12:12
  • $\begingroup$ Sure (and thanks for responding). $\endgroup$ – Martha Nov 24 '20 at 12:55
  • $\begingroup$ I would like to calculate Hedge g from the mean, standard deviation and group size. I use the package esc in R to calculate effect sizes. $\endgroup$ – Martha Nov 24 '20 at 12:56
  • $\begingroup$ Its just that I have sometimes the mean, standard deviation and group size and additionally the authors also report the t-values. It is possible to calculate Hedge g via mean, standard deviation and group size as well as thorugh the reported t-value. So I was wondering which values to choose for effect size calculation. $\endgroup$ – Martha Nov 24 '20 at 12:57
  • $\begingroup$ They should give the same value although if they are not reported with many decimal places they may differ due to rounding error. $\endgroup$ – mdewey Nov 24 '20 at 13:26

Sample size, mean, and standard deviation should be prioritized over other statistics (e.g., t-test or ANOVA values) to estimate standardized mean differences (e.g., Hedges' g).


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