[R-meta] Question regarding non-linear effects in meta-regression

Jens Schüler jens.schueler at wiwi.uni-kl.de
Tue Apr 24 13:38:10 CEST 2018

Hi all,


I am currently investigating the possibility of assessing non-linear effects
in a meta-regression.

For example, I am interested in the relationship between risk-taking and
performance, and I want to assess whether the mean score of risk taking has
a non-linear moderating effect on that relationship.


I had a look at Wolfgang’s previous examples on adding restricted cubic
splines to mixed effects models via the rms package e.g. 




and looked a bit into Frank Harrell’s book concerning the adequate number
and location of nodes.


My question now is, how do I determine/test whether the plotted spline is
actually significant/meaningful?

I am a bit unsure what I should make of the mixed effects model results in
that regard or if I have to perform additional tests.





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