A Beginner's Guide to Scientific Method

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  • Edition: 4th
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2011-01-01
  • Publisher: Wadsworth Publishing

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This concise yet comprehensive guide provides an introduction to the scientific method of inquiry. You will not only learn about the proper conduct of science but also how to recognize and question factors such as pseudoscience, untestable explanations and fallacies. Compact enough to be used as a supplementary book, yet comprehensive enough in its coverage to be used as a core book, this book assists users in using the scientific method to design and assess experiments.

Table of Contents

Just What is Science?
Asking Why
Scientific Method
The Consequences of Science
Scientific Method in Daily Life
Things to Come
Making Accurate Observations
Anomalous Phenomena
Observing Anomalies
The Burden of Proof
Concept Quiz
Explanation, Theory and Hypothesis
Causal Mechanisms
Underlying Processes
The Interdependence of Explanatory Methods
Rival Explanations and Ockham's Razor
Explanation and Description
Ultimate Explanations
Concept Quiz
The Basic Method
Confirmation and Rejection
Designing a Good TeSt. Real World Experiments
How Not to Design a TeSt. Conceptual Vagueness
Testing Extraordinary Claims
Predictive Clarity
Bias and Expectation
Concept Quiz
Establishing Causal Links
Causal Studies
Ruling Out Chance
Multiple Causal Factors
Randomized, Prospective and Retrospective Studies
Reading Between the Lines
Concept Quiz
Fallacies In The Name Of Science
What is a Fallacy?
False Anomalies
Questionable Arguments by Elimination
Illicit Causal Inferences
Unsupported Analogies and Similarities
Untestable Explanations and Predictions
Empty Jargon
Ad Hoc Rescues
Exploiting Uncertainty
Science and Pseudoscience
Concept Quiz
Further Reading
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