Definition: A questionable research practice termed ‘Hypothesizing After the Results are Known’ (HARKing). “HARKing is defined as presenting a post hoc hypothesis (i.e., one based on or informed by one’s results) in a research report as if it was, in fact, a priori” (Kerr, 1998, p. 196). For example, performing subgroup analyses, finding an effect in one subgroup, and writing the introduction with a ‘hypothesis’ that matches these results.

Related terms: Analytic Flexibility, Confirmatory analyses, Exploratory data analysis, Fudging, Garden of forking paths, P-hacking, Questionable Research Practices or Questionable Reporting Practices (QRPs)

References: Kerr (1998), & Nosek and Lakens (2014)

Drafted and Reviewed by: Beatrix Arendt, Matt Jaquiery, Charlotte R. Pennington, Martin Vasilev, Flávio Azevedo

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