Chapter 2 Principles Of Science And Systems

Chapter 2
Principles Of Science And Systems
What Is Science?
• Science Depends On Skepticism And Accuracy
• Deductive And Inductive Reasoning Are Both
– Deductive: Use Existing Knowledge to Find New
– Inductive: Generalize from Observations
• Testable Hypotheses And Theories Are
Essential Tools
Basic Principles of Science
• Empiricism: Experiment and Observation
• Uniformitarianism
– Physical Laws Uniform in Space and Time
– This is a Finding, Not An Assumption
• Parsimony (KISS: Keep it Simple, Students)
– Simple isn’t Automatically Right
– Unnecessarily Complex is Usually Wrong
Basic Principles of Science
• Uncertainty
– Theories always open to correction or
– Reality Check: Atoms are Real
• Repeatability
– When in Doubt, You can Repeat Observations
• Testable Questions
Testable Hypotheses And Theories
• Testable Hypotheses And Theories Are
Essential Tools
– Commonly Used as a Criterion for Whether an
Idea is Scientific
– Repeat Observations, Logical Consistency
– Has to be “Risky”
What Are Statistics, And Why Are They
• Exploring Science Understanding Probability
Helps Reduce Uncertainty
• Statistics Can Indicate The Probability That
Your Results Were Random
• Experimental Design Can Reduce Bias
• Models Are An Important Experimental
• Need to Understand Common Statistical
A Few Common Statistical Fallacies
• Confusing order and probability
• Long runs do not make an event less probable
• Long negative runs do not make an event more
• Spurious patterns
• Clusters don’t make events more or less probable.
• After-the-fact probabilities
• Treating non-random events as chance events
• Poor memory and fakery
• Systems Describe Interactions
• Systems Can Be Described In Terms Of Their
• Systems May Exhibit Stability, Cyclic Behavior
or Instability
• Scientific Consensus And Conflict
• Detecting Pseudoscience Relies On
Independent, Critical Thinking