Critical Appraisal of Physical Science as a Human Enterprise: Dynamics of Scientific Progress (Contemporary Trends and Issues in Science Education)

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9781402096259: Critical Appraisal of Physical Science as a Human Enterprise: Dynamics of Scientific Progress (Contemporary Trends and Issues in Science Education)

It is generally believed that doing science means accumulating empirical data with no or little reference to the interpretation of the data based on the scientist’s th- retical framework or presuppositions. Holton (1969a) has deplored the widely accepted myth (experimenticism) according to which progress in science is presented as the inexorable result of the pursuit of logically sound conclusions from un- biguous experimental data. Surprisingly, some of the leading scientists themselves (Millikan is a good example) have contributed to perpetuate the myth with respect to modern science being essentially empirical, that is carefully tested experim- tal facts (free of a priori conceptions), leading to inductive generalizations. Based on the existing knowledge in a field of research a scientist formulates the guiding assumptions (Laudan et al. , 1988), presuppositions (Holton, 1978, 1998) and “hard core” (Lakatos, 1970) of the research program that constitutes the imperative of presuppositions, which is not abandoned in the face of anomalous data. Laudan and his group consider the following paraphrase of Kant by Lakatos as an important guideline: philosophy of science without history of science is empty. Starting in the 1960s, this “historical school” has attempted to redraw and replace the positivist or logical empiricist image of science that dominated for the first half of the twentieth century. Among other aspects, one that looms large in these studies is that of “guiding assumptions” and has considerable implications for the main thesis of this monograph (Chapter 2).

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The objective of this book is to reconstruct historical episodes and experiments that have been important in scientific progress, and to explore the role played by controversies and rivalries among scientists. Although progress in science has been replete with controversies, scientists themselves either ignore or simply downplay their role. Such presentations lack the appreciation of the dynamics of ‘science-in-the-making’. This book provides methodological guidelines - based on a historical perspective of philosophy of science- that facilitate an understanding of historical episodes beyond that of inductive generalizations. These guidelines suggest that progress in science is not merely based on the accumulation of experimental data, but rather dependent on the creative imagination of the scientific community. This work shows that interpretation of experimental data is difficult and inevitably leads to alternative models/theories thus facilitating the understanding of science as a human enterprise.

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“The book is organized in 14 chapters and includes references, an author index and a subject index. ... The book does an excellent job in brining to the foreground the complexity that surrounds the development of ideas in science. ... Overall, the book is a valuable contribution in illustrating a face of science that is often ignored. ... The book will be useful for academics, researchers and students in history, philosophy and education of science.” (Sibel Erduran, Science & Education, June, 2010)

“This 14-chapter book devotes 10 chapters to historical episodes of scientific discovery and theory development in the physical sciences. ... for students of history and philosophy of science (HPS) and science education, this volume reports on important physical science episodes in the application of HPS to science education. ... Niaz’s monograph is a good source for gaining insights into how history of science influenced philosophy of science.” (Richard A. Duschl, Studies in Science Education, Vol. 47 (1), March, 2011)

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Book Description Springer-Verlag New York Inc., United States, 2009. Hardback. Book Condition: New. 2009 ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book. It is generally believed that doing science means accumulating empirical data with no or little reference to the interpretation of the data based on the scientist s th- retical framework or presuppositions. Holton (1969a) has deplored the widely accepted myth (experimenticism) according to which progress in science is presented as the inexorable result of the pursuit of logically sound conclusions from un- biguous experimental data. Surprisingly, some of the leading scientists themselves (Millikan is a good example) have contributed to perpetuate the myth with respect to modern science being essentially empirical, that is carefully tested experim- tal facts (free of a priori conceptions), leading to inductive generalizations. Based on the existing knowledge in a field of research a scientist formulates the guiding assumptions (Laudan et al. , 1988), presuppositions (Holton, 1978, 1998) and hard core (Lakatos, 1970) of the research program that constitutes the imperative of presuppositions, which is not abandoned in the face of anomalous data. Laudan and his group consider the following paraphrase of Kant by Lakatos as an important guideline: philosophy of science without history of science is empty. Starting in the 1960s, this historical school has attempted to redraw and replace the positivist or logical empiricist image of science that dominated for the first half of the twentieth century. Among other aspects, one that looms large in these studies is that of guiding assumptions and has considerable implications for the main thesis of this monograph (Chapter 2). Bookseller Inventory # LIB9781402096259

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Book Description Springer-Verlag New York Inc., United States, 2009. Hardback. Book Condition: New. 2009 ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book. It is generally believed that doing science means accumulating empirical data with no or little reference to the interpretation of the data based on the scientist s th- retical framework or presuppositions. Holton (1969a) has deplored the widely accepted myth (experimenticism) according to which progress in science is presented as the inexorable result of the pursuit of logically sound conclusions from un- biguous experimental data. Surprisingly, some of the leading scientists themselves (Millikan is a good example) have contributed to perpetuate the myth with respect to modern science being essentially empirical, that is carefully tested experim- tal facts (free of a priori conceptions), leading to inductive generalizations. Based on the existing knowledge in a field of research a scientist formulates the guiding assumptions (Laudan et al. , 1988), presuppositions (Holton, 1978, 1998) and hard core (Lakatos, 1970) of the research program that constitutes the imperative of presuppositions, which is not abandoned in the face of anomalous data. Laudan and his group consider the following paraphrase of Kant by Lakatos as an important guideline: philosophy of science without history of science is empty. Starting in the 1960s, this historical school has attempted to redraw and replace the positivist or logical empiricist image of science that dominated for the first half of the twentieth century. Among other aspects, one that looms large in these studies is that of guiding assumptions and has considerable implications for the main thesis of this monograph (Chapter 2). Bookseller Inventory # LIB9781402096259

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