The scientific method

This outline discusses the definition of the scientific method, its central role in founding a scientific epistemology, the demarcation of science from pseudoscience, and other epistemological topics concerning the methods and philosophy of science. The metaphysical implications of science are discussed in the outline on scientific realism.

Contents

  1. Issues and positions
    1. History of science
    2. Rationalism vs empiricism
    3. Induction
    4. Abduction
    5. Is there a universal scientific method?
    6. Statistical measurement
    7. Scientific knowledge and realism
    8. Naturalism, monism, and reductionism
    9. Pseudoscience
  2. My thoughts
  3. Annotated bibliography
    1. Hume, D. (1748). An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding.
    2. Sellars, W. (1963). Empircism and Philosophy of Mind.
    3. Pigliucci, M. (2010). Nonsense on Stilts: How to Tell Science From Bunk.
    4. French, S. (2007). Science: Key Concepts in Philosophy.
    5. More articles to do
  4. Links and encyclopedia articles
    1. SEP
    2. IEP
    3. Wikipedia
    4. Others
  5. References

Issues and positions

History of science

Rationalism vs empiricism

TODO.

Early Empiricists:

Rationalists:

British empiricists:

Other important synthesizers:

Induction

TODO:

Abduction

TODO.

Is there a universal scientific method?

TODO:

Statistical measurement

TODO.

Scientific knowledge and realism

TODO.

Figure 3: Knowledge = JTB - G (philosophy-in-figures.tumblr.com).

Figure 3: Knowledge = JTB - G (philosophy-in-figures.tumblr.com).

The Stopped Clock:

You’re walking by a clock that you’ve always known to be accurate in the past. You glance up at it and see that it reads five o’clock; on the basis of this you believe that it’s five o’clock. Your belief is justified, and as it happens it is five o’clock. But unbeknownst to you, the clock stopped exactly twelve hours ago.

– from Russell’s “Human Knowledge: Its Scope & Limits”

Naturalism, monism, and reductionism

TODO.

Pseudoscience

TODO.

My thoughts

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Annotated bibliography

Hume, D. (1748). An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding.

1. Of the different Species of Philosophy

2. Of the Origin of Ideas

3. Of the Association of Ideas

4. Sceptical Doubts concerning the Operations of the Understanding

5. Sceptical Solution of these Doubts

6. Of Probability

7. Of the Idea of necessary Connexion

8. Of Liberty and Necessity

9. Of the Reason of Animals

10. Of Miracles

11. Of a particular Providence and of a future State

12. Of the academical or sceptical Philosophy

My thoughts


Sellars, W. (1963). Empircism and Philosophy of Mind.

My thoughts


Pigliucci, M. (2010). Nonsense on Stilts: How to Tell Science From Bunk.

TODO.

My thoughts


French, S. (2007). Science: Key Concepts in Philosophy.

1. Introduction

Do not become archivists of facts. Try to penetrate to the secret of their occurrence, persistently search for the laws which govern them.

– Ivan Pavlov

The important thing in science is not so much to obtain new facts as to discover new ways of thinking about them.

– W.L. Bragg

TODO:

2. Discovery

3. Heuristics

4. Justification

5. Observation

6. Experiment

7. Realism

8. Anti-realism

9. Independence

10. Gender Bias

My thoughts


SEP

IEP

Wikipedia

Others

References

Descartes, R. (2008). Meditations on First Philosophy. (M. Moriarty, Trans.). Oxford: Oxford University Press. (Originally published in 1641).

Hume, D. (2007). An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding. (P. Millican, Ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press. (Originally published in 1748).

Newton, I. (2016). The Principia: Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy. (I. B. Cohen, A. Whitman, & J. Budenz, Trans.). Berkeley: University of California Press. (Originally published in 1687).


  1. Descartes (2008).

  2. Hume (2007).

  3. Newton (2016).

  4. Hume (2007).