Philosophy: Scientific Method Essay

Submitted By campbecm
Words: 1278
Pages: 6

ce, which was both highly praised and heavily criticized.
Godfrey smith sets up Kuhn as popular in culture
Initiated the word paradigm. A heavily influential concept in society.
While popper has had an enormous influence on science his philosophy is heavily misunderstood. “all science is an attempt to refute”- the scientific community only sees the importance of falsifiability, science is permanently open minded. Popper has the idea that if we don’t take his claim, we are closed minded. But he faces the problem of wholsm- the theory or hypothesis has observational conseuences on it’s own-
Scientists who endorse Popper do not fully understand the radical refutation of Popper- it indicate there is never a sense of confirmation..
It seems in practical day that not all of science is an attempt to refute. It seems like confirmation is a goal of science – Provblem with Popper.
Scientists do not actually appear to think of science this way
What does seem attractive is the open mindedness of Poppers theory. Science seems to be more about the world tell us, ie observation ought to have the power to convince us to give things us
But Kuhn argues that there is much success in the history of science of having a closed mind.
So prior to Newton the concept of action at distance was a problem- but Newton said that was just a consequence of gravity – rejected the idea that it was something he needed to account for. Someone might have worried about tha fact there was no observable movement or agent.

What is a paradigm? (in Kuhn sense)
The dominant way of thinking about something at a time. A way of doing science, a package of ideas, includeds claims about the nature of the world, theories of gravity for example, also includes methods for gathering and analyzing data.

Beyond these times of methods Kuhn says paradigms include habits of thought, standards for what counts as a question, standards for evaluating answers. What this means is that notions like rationality and progress make a lot of sense from within a paradigm. The standards for accessing whether progress has been made are part of a paradigm says Kuhn. (problem what about inter paradigm cross paradigm progress).
But on Kuhn’s account it does not make sense to say there has been progress between / cross paradigms.
But there is progress within normal science within paradigms.
Working within a period during normal science Kuhn says it does not show that we have been trying to refute everything, and if we were we would never be making any progress.
Thinks instead we should look for times when our theories are not working and attempt to look for external influecnces or factors that may be acting upon it
What Kuhn is working on is a theory of scientific change.
What we call revolutions are just spectacular refutations or spectacular conjectures.
Kuhn says no if you want to understand scientific change, (understand difference between kuhns theory of scientific change and the pistmological rationality of science advocated by the postivists/empiriscits)
What we need to do to understand science as a rational process we must look at the history of science and change to understand what is going on in the scientific change.
Scientific change being the main impotant factor
How does the history of science inform Kuhn’s account of rationality in science?
What kind of beef would the positivists have with Kuhn?
To the positivists we might say to give those abstart observations we are providing a normative evaluation of their proceedures.
--better—Kuhn lets look at history look at the actual sequence of events in the theories. If we look at the way theories have come about and been replaced it has not occurred through the way popper advocated or the way empiricists said it ought to work. The positivists had a deep problem with Kuhn’s account it is to descriptive of past events, Kuhn thought the where and when you are , physcological aspects of the researchers…