Describe the three main views about the development of science: reductionism, falsificationism and relativism.
In our everyday life we follow a specific procedure when trying to find out how something works. Normally, one makes a prediction of what will happen to something, and then analyze the result of the happening. The same practice is used in scientific research, though much more detailed and complex. To verify or falsify a theory, there are three philosophical theories about the nature of scientific development. This essay tries to describe these theories, and decide which one is best suited for today’s research.
Reductionism is used to resolve diverse problems of scientific knowledge. It is said to consist of linear, cumulative and convergent factors. In other words, science is concerned with testing and verifying, incorporating old theories into a correct body of science, and aiming towards an ideal as science progresses.
Reductionism affirms that complex terms can be described with the help of simpler notions. For instance arithmetic could be reduced to logics, and mental processes could be described as physics-related processes. The idea of where the boundary goes for a reductionist is not so clear. If a person that has caused a traffic accident, a person that wants to explain the accident describe it as a problem with the law system, while another person can describe the incident in terms of psychology. A third person thinks that psychology is a broad term and that it is about reaction patterns in the neurons. A fourth person might suggest that chemical processes lie behind the accident, while a fifth person means that all that has been said is irrelevant because the only thing that has actually happened is a physical process where atoms or pure energy has moved around according to the unpredictable rules of quantum mechanics.
Psychology is commonly defined as ‘scientific’ study of human behaviour and cognitive processes. Broadly speaking the discussion focuses on the different branches of psychology, and if they are indeed scientific. However, it is integral in this to debate to understand exactly the major features of a science, in order to judge if psychology is in fact one. There must be a definable ...
A statement cannot be tested, or even considered scientific, if it is not falsifiable. Popper came up with the basic requirement that states: to view something as scientific, one needs to falsify the hypothesis, until the “mystery” is solved. Sometimes, it can be the case that the hypothesis stays undefeated, leading to accepting the fact that there is no way to verify or falsify a subject, according to Popper. The statement: “Elvis Presley is alive, he works at a bar in the West Indies” can be falsified through scientific research. The statement: “Science will give us all answers as time goes by” cannot be falsified, because it is an unscientific claim.
Relativism is the theory developed by Thomas Kuhn. According to him, researchers operate an issue within their paradigm at first, then deal with the irregularities. Later there is the stage where scientists begin to give up on the accepted paradigm. Questions arise, and new theories are eventually created. A new paradigm then replaces the previous one, causing a so-called paradigm shift. There is no absolute truth according to relativism. The truth is always a by-product of a particular framework.
Reductionism, falsificationism and relativism are terms that might be difficult for the average student to fully grasp. To conduct a scientific experiment, there must be specific procedures to follow. What I mostly got out of the three theories is how unnecessary it is to dwell on such complex issues. Analyzing the result of the task is what concerns me the most. However, the approaches are important to be able to understand the philosophical aspect of scientific experiments. Falsificationism sounds the most convincing to me. It seems to be a very long process, since the hypothesis cannot be clarified until factors that prove the falseness of the experiment are established. Despite the long procedure, falsificationism is the theory that is the most realistic in terms of pure scientific research, such as finding the boiling point of water. In my opinion, it would be easier to defeat the hypothesis using this method, although as previously stated, it would be a way to kill time.
Principles to scientific management and other theories Scientific management, as a classical management theory is a practice that deals with the careful selection of workers, the training of workers and supervising of workers for support. During the early 20th century a man called Fredrick. W. Taylor (also known as the father of scientific management) by then had a mechanical engineering ...