I have a quick question about the metafor package. I have been using the author's guide for stochastically dependent effect sizes (via github) to run a [multivariate meta-analysis] using multiple variables from the same treatment studies.
We have a special interest in looking at whether one variable decreases as the other(s) decrease. So we are very interested in the correlational output that metafor also supplies, while also controlling for some of the shared variance.
My question is how do you interpret the rho part of the output? Is this a simply a pearson correlation that attempts to estimate Rho at the population level or is this a rank-ordered Spearman's rho correlation? I need to test the significance of those correlations, hence I need to know how to interpret the rho columns.
This is the example output from the website above after running a 2-outcome multivariate meta-analysis:
rho.math rho.vrbl math vrbl math 1 -1.000 - no verbal -1.000 1 5 -
An example of my output is:
rho.a___ rho.d___ rho.e___ rho.em__ rho.i___ a___ d___ e___ em__ i___ a______ 1 0.825 0.541 0.878 0.717 - no no no no d_________ 0.825 1 0.921 0.935 0.822 57 - no no no e___________ 0.541 0.921 1 0.783 0.741 39 47 - no no em__________ 0.878 0.935 0.783 1 0.611 10 10 4 - no i_____________ 0.717 0.822 0.741 0.611 1 37 45 22 2 -
Any thoughts or help would be appreciated. Thanks!